$25 monthly FTTH tax proposal fades away in Utah

4 March 2016 by Steve Blum
, ,

Roads yes, fiber no.

An everyone pays, everyone gets plan to pay for completion of the Utopia fiber to the home network in Utah appears to be dead (h/t to Fred Pilot at the EldoTelecom blog for the pointer). The financing package was proposed by an Australian company, Macquarie Capital, as a way to finish building out the network in participating Utah cities. The deal that was on the table would have every home and business pay a mandatory utility fee of $25 a month – a tax, in other words.… More

UTOPIA tests everyone pays, everyone gets muni broadband model

9 March 2015 by Steve Blum
, , , ,

At a crossroads.

The latest report issued by Macquarie Capital as it pushes ahead with an effort to bail out the sinking multi-city UTOPIA municipal fiber-to-the-home project in Utah confronts an inevitable collision between public policy and profitability.

Good public policy requires muni FTTH service to be available to all, whether or not they want it now, or whether their neighbors want it. It’s a defining characteristic of any government-provided service. On the other hand, good business practice – indeed, the defining feature of capitalism – calls for money to be spent where the return on investment will be the highest.… More

Broadband UTOPIA starts at $23 a month for cities that remain in the game

5 March 2015 by Steve Blum
, , , ,

Click for the full report.

Only six of eleven Utah cities involved in the UTOPIA fiber-to-the-home system chose to move ahead with a bail out plan proposed by Macquarie Capital, an Australian investment company. As a result, the proposed monthly tax bill (characterised as a “mandatory utility fee”) for homeowners in the reduced project area has jumped from $18 to $20 per month to the current estimate of $22.60 and a cap of $25. That’s just to pay for building out the network to every home and business in those cities.… More

Aussies jump in with Utopia FTTH bid

20 December 2013 by Steve Blum
, , , , , ,

Spends just as well as a greenback.

Utopia’s saviour appears to be an Australian investment company, Macquarie Capital Group, that specialises in large public sector projects, including fiber optic networks. According to a story in the Salt Lake City Tribune, Macquarie is starting out with a feasibility study…

The goal, according to a senior Macquarie executive, would be to develop a private-public partnership with any of the UTOPIA cities that wanted to participate, with Macquarie paying to build out the municipal Internet grid and then running it under a 30-year revenue-sharing contract.