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Maine Telecommunications Education Access Fund
Advisory Board

Meeting Minutes for June 26, 2002


Members Present:             Phil Lindley, Joanne Steneck, Wayne Jortner for Bill Black, Linda Lord for Gary Nichols, Greg Scott, Barry Crommett, Gerry Dube, Reginald Palmer


Members Absent:            Scott Thibeau, Barry McCrum


  1. Approval of Minutes from May 15, 2002, meeting.


  1. Status of Connections.  Barry Crommett reported that standard 56 connections decreased to 490.  T-1 connections are up to 433 and ATM is the same at 66 (including shared sites).  Barry also reported five T-1s had been installed recently with another forty or so to be installed in July and August.  Twenty-four of the T-1 upgrades are for middle schools.  Sanford High School added four T-1s because of the size of the schools and lack of LAN bandwidth to access the ATM connection.  We discussed the Cable Company involvement in providing the LAN.

    The Board discussed the need for “guidelines” regarding bandwidth increases and the use of LAN/WAN technology to interconnect school campuses.  Cooperating local entities such as Cable Cos, Telephone Cos, or other private companies could provide such interconnections.  Access to MSLN could be by alternative technologies such as DSL, Cable, or fractional T-1.  The schools would likely have less cost in the long run and the impact on the MSLN would be less if fewer broadband connections (T-1 and ATM) were used.  Barry and Gerry volunteered to draft the guidelines.


  1. Status of Internet Service and Filtering.  Gerry Dube reported that the review of two filtering products, Xstop and Netsweeper, shows that neither is suitable for MSLN at this time.  Problems include lack of database maturity (results in over filtering) and difficult installation.  N2H2 (current filtering vendor) has a new product that appears to work well in “our environment.”  UNET is working closely with N2H2 to completely evaluate the product, which currently does not have full decentralized control – a major UNET requirement of any filtering product is effective distributed management, i.e. local control with no affect on bandwidth.  While Gerry does not expect to pay for now, pricing estimates are $3 per machine per year, for 50 to 70 thousand machines, approximately $150,000 per year.  Starting July 1, UNET will filter all schools and no libraries.  The evaluation, including the decentralized control piece should be completed by August.  UNET will inform Technical Coordinators of the filtering method.
  2. Federal E-Rate Status.  Edna Comstock reported that she would appeal the disputed amount of the Year 4 award, $27,000 for 41 libraries.  The dispute involves the urban/rural designation.  Edna also explained the reimbursement process for Verizon, who submitted full bills and UNET, who submitted discounted bills.


  1. Leaning Technology Initiative.  Joanne Steneck said that funding for the initiative was secure for this biennium, but succeeding years would be on a year-by-year basis.  Gerry reported that Apple would be meeting with UNET to discuss networking regarding the laptops.


  1. Other


·        Linda Lord discussed some of the recent library databases improvements and will report on the Fogler Library Digital Library project next meeting.


·        Next MSLN Advisory Board Meeting – August 14, 2002, 9:30AM, PUC Conf. Room C.