|The State of Oregon received a $125,000 TCSP grant to help create telecommunity centers in rural areas of the state. The goal of these centers is to create locally-based business opportunities for residents in rural areas while reducing long-distance travel to large cities. |
A telecommunity center uses technology to serve a wide variety of community needs, fulfilling a role as a telework center, a training and education opportunities center, and a provider of professional services such as secretarial assistance. Telecommunity centers are being selected through partnerships with the public and private sectors, including the county and businesses. Funding is performance-based; the centers will receive funding based on an individual community's needs and "willingness-to-pay" for select services. This approach is expected to result in self-supporting operations within three to five years. The project will include an analysis of costs and benefits of the approach and will result in information that can be used by other areas to establish telecommunity centers.