CAEC hosted Broadband Access Survey Meetings

Central Alabama Electric Cooperative (CAEC) hosted broadband survey Q&A meetings on Sept. 13 (East Operations Center in Titus), Sept. 18 (Headquarters in Prattville) and Sept. 20 (West Operations Center in Verbena) to answer questions concerning its Broadband Access Survey.

The following information is a re-cap of the meetings. CAEC is nearing the end of its feasibility study. During the recent meetings, area residents had the opportunity to share the specific needs for broadband in their communities. CAEC President/CEO Tom Stackhouse stated, “We know that high speed internet is a necessity in today’s world, but hearing first-hand accounts of personal stories from the members helped to bring into perspective the reality of people’s frustration level with their lack of connectivity.”  Expressed needs in the community meetings ranged from home security systems and online schooling to working from home and streaming church services.

Not only were community needs discussed, but a portion of the meeting covered what initiated this research project – the needs of CAEC. The cooperative has a vast amount of data flowing back and forth, which helps better serve its members, and this data will only increase in the future. Because of these technological changes, CAEC is looking to build infrastructure for its own use, which would include installing fiber that would connect all of its facilities and substations.

If this project gets approved for CAEC’s own use, it could make it possible to serve homes and businesses in the area.

A project of this magnitude is expensive, but other cooperatives have been successful. Although federal and state grants are being explored, the business model will be built on a self-funded basis and the business would be self-supported. Any grants received, however, would help ease the overall investment.

As a reminder, part of this feasibility project involves determining community demand for service, which is why there is a survey available ( As part of the survey, a $25 commitment is required. This fee is refundable if the project is not implemented; however, if the project does move forward, the $25 will serve as the connection fee, which may be up to $300.

The feedback from the Broadband Access Survey will prove to be invaluable, as CAEC will weigh the survey results within its decision-making process. A decision on the broadband project is expected by the end of the year.

We strongly encourage interested members of the community to visit to learn more, sign up and receive updates on the project. They can also call or visit any of the cooperative’s offices or visit this page.