CPUC decides regional consortia grants on Thursday

by Steve Blum • , , ,


The final resolution and an alternate approving the first round of regional broadband consortia grants have been released by the California Public Utilities Commission. No major changes were made and it is now ready for a vote at the commission meeting on Thursday, 1 December 2011.

The commissioners will look at two proposed resolutions. The lead version gives Los Angeles County $1,346,927 in total funding over three years, the alternate proposes $2,310,000. Absent any surprises, the main point of discussion for commissioners will be picking a final number.

Besides LA, $150,000 in annual funding for three years ($450,000 total) for six other consortia is included in both drafts: Central Coast , East Bay, Redwood Coast, Northeastern California, Upstate (north-central), the Sacramento area and the San Joaquin Valley. Funding for seven additional consortia will be considered over the next couple of months.

During the initial 20-day review period, four organizations submitted comments. Three of the regional consortia endorsed the higher amount for LA and asked that all fourteen applicants be approved at once. The CPUC’s Division of Ratepayer Advocates favored the lower amountfor LA and asked that the decision on all fourteen be delayed for further consideration.

The comments are largely rejected by the resolutions that will be presented for consideration: the first seven consortia will come up for a vote, assuming the item isn’t pulled from the agenda, and it’ll be up to the commissioners to decide how much money LA gets.