More than 150 homes marked for inclusion in the fixed-line rollout of the National Broadband Network (NBN) in Coonabarabran will have to wait a further 12 months to be connected to the service.
Many local home and business owners have already switched over to the NBN, which was made available earlier this year.
NBN spokesperson, Marcela Balart, said there was a pocket of premises in Coonabarabran that required additional construction works to connect to the NBN network.
“Regrettably, this resulted in a delay in providing access to the NBN network to these premises when the wider area was switched on,” Ms Balart said.
“We are working to connect these as soon as we can and premises will be notified when they are eligible to order a service over the nbnTM network.
“We expect this will occur by mid-next year.”
In the meantime, Ms Balart said they did not anticipate any disruption to existing phone and internet services.
“We apologise for the delay while this important work is carried out,” she said.
“The rollout of the NBN network is one of the most complex and ambitious initiatives to be undertaken in any market across the world and we ask the community for its patience as we make the transition from the old to the new network.
“All Australian homes and businesses will have access to fast and reliable broadband by 2020 in line with our commitment to Australians.
“Nationally, more than one in two Australians can currently order a service over the NBN network through a retailer, with the rollout now past the halfway point.”
For Knight Street resident, Tamara-Lee O’Neill, who operates her own business from home, the delay has been frustrating.
“We have contacted NBN and they couldn’t explain why we haven’t got it or when we would get it,” Mrs O’Neill said.
“What I don’t get is the hospital is included in the “brown section” - wouldn’t this have been a priority when they were laying down the lines?
“The bad ADSL connection that we have at the moment drops in and out quite often and we usually resort to using 4G on our phones to do a lot of things.
“We are tired of paying premium prices for a service that is unreliable!”
In addition to the rollout issues, it appears there has been no movement on the topic of fixed- line NBN connections to businesses in the industrial area of town (Saleyards Road, Ulan Street, Gardener Street, Crane Street), or adjoining residential areas on Sutton’s Lane, Rifle Range Road, Reservoir Street and Hilton Place, despite ongoing concerns from the community.
A section of homes located in south-east Coonabarabran, identified above in brown, will not gain access to fixed line NBN until mid-2018.