Reviving and updating the Westchester Pathmaster tradition started in the 1700s, the Westchester Alliance For Telecommunications and Public Access (WATPA), a not-for-profit community organization, strives to coordinate development of a county-wide community network using on-line, interactive electronic communications. WATPA is dedicated to the establishment of a readily
accessible, communication based information infrastructure in Westchester County, New York to benefit citizens, educational organizations, business and government for community and educational purposes. This is especially
important for a large community with a population of nearly a million.
WATPA has focused on several areas in its almost fifteen years of existence::
- the direction of cable/telecommunications and information policy at various levels of government, including municipalities;
- the development of an inventory of telecommunications paths in the county as part of a broader planning effort;
- protection of the civil liberties and rights to inexpensive access to public data by the people of Westchester;
- support and advice for the increasing use of telecommunications and associated technology in the schools of Westchester County;
- the application of telecommunications and associated technology in health and human services;
- the application of telecommunications and associated technology in the arts and sciences;
- the impact of telecommunications and associated technology on human health, well being and the social fabric;
- the impact of telecommunications and associated technology on the county's economy.
WATPA's experience indicates that community networks are usually indigenous to central city metropolitan areas. Very few traditional media focus on Westchester County issues and needs; WATPA does.
WATPA welcomes as members anyone who lives, works or is otherwise concerned with the future of Westchester County. In a phrase from one of our sister organizations, all you need is the desire "to help make our corner of the digital world a civilized and flourishing place to live, work and visit."