Company pledges to bring improved internet, cable service to Salineville

SALINEVILLE — Salineville should soon have faster internet and a new cable system run off brand new fiber optic lines.

Robert Gessner, a second generation owner of MCTV, attended this week’s village council meeting to talk about the services his company will soon be providing to the areas of Salineville, Bergholz and Amsterdam.

Gessner told council MCTV recently purchased the local system from Crystal Broadband and he already knows the system is not where it needs to be. According to Gessner, plans are already being completed to bring fiber optic lines to the Salineville area. He said they will be building an entirely new system and until it is in place, he cannot see billing the current customers for the service.

“We’re not going to charge anyone until we have the new one up,” Gessner said. “It’s not up to our standards so we’re not going to charge you for it.”

Once they are in place, MCTV will offer both television service and internet. The internet will not slow down even when there is a number of people on it, Gessner said. The rate will be based on how large of a bandwidth the customer wants. He noted the current customers of Crystal Broadband will be the first to see the fiber optics heading in their direction.

Council member Sally Keating questioned whether those answering customer calls will speak English, to which Gessner replied they hire local people. According to the information he handed out to council members at the meeting, there are currently 169 local employees working for MCTV including 14 new ones hired in 2017. MCTV currently operates in Stark, Wayne, Summit, Holmes and Tuscarawas counties and is serving more than 49,000 customers.

Another concern brought up during the meeting was the channels. Although Gessner said Pittsburgh channels costs his company more, he listened to Keeting’s concerns that there are three Pittsburgh channels she watches regularly. Gessner said Salineville is actually in the Youngstown market, but is positioned between Youngstown, Wheeling and Pittsburgh.

In other matters:

— Council voted to pay a lump sum payout to Police Chief Matthew Devlin for 209.5 hours of comp time, which he has accumulated since he took the position. Devlin is being paid the hours at his normal hourly rate of about $15 per hour. In the future, council has decided to pay it out quarterly.

— Council approved $1,600 to cover the trash containers used for the cleanup day event held last month.

— Although the village did not receive the Community Development Block Grant money for the proposed walking trail in Kiwanis Park, Mayor Linda Adams said the grant application for grant money through the Ohio Department of Natural Resources has been submitted. Salineville received a similar grant through the ODNR several years ago, all of which was used to pay for the playground equipment. The village will not learn if it will receive the ODNR grant until sometime in the fall.

— Adams asked council to look at a letter she was sending looking for assistance for an emergency project where a hillside is slipping on Salineville Road West, also known state Route 39. The Ohio Department of Transportation has reportedly found some federal funding to cover 80 percent of the project, but the additional 20 percent would be $63,480. Adams noted the village’s current available funds would not even come close to covering that amount.