$230 million and counting

At least $230 million in grant and loan proposals were sent to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) yesterday, and more is to come. I’ve seen a total of 29 projects from 15 different organizations. Most of the requests – almost $229 million – are for grants, but half a dozen also requested loans totaling nearly $2 million.

The CPUC doesn’t have that much money in the California Advanced Services Fund (CASF). They have something like $150 million left of their original authorization, but probably only about half that is in the bank. So the winnowing process is likely to be contentious.

As of 2 February 2013.

I’m expecting to see one other project in the $13 million range and there might be more. Information is coming via a email circulation list, and it’s not foolproof. One of the emails, from Shasta County Telecom, forgot to include the amount, but it looks like a small project, in the low six figures if that, so it won’t move the needle much.

If you assume that everyone made the maximum grant request of 60% of construction costs, we’re looking at $381 million in total project spending proposed.

Tellus Venture Associates is helping three of the applicants: Bright Fiber Network, Pinnacles Telephone Company and Surfnet. So I’m not exactly a disinterested source of information. But I’ll keep updating.

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