Gonzales universal broadband service RFQ deadline extended

23 November 2017 by Steve Blum
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Internet service providers have four extra working weeks to respond to a request for quotes to provide universal broadband access to residents of the City of Gonzales, in California’s Salinas Valley. Following requests from potential respondents for extra time to submit quotes, and an inadvertent glitch that delayed answers to some of the questions they submitted, the City extended the deadline for responses to 22 December 2017.

That means the offers won’t be due on Cyber Monday, 27 November 2017, but that was a coincidental, albeit cool, deadline to begin with.… More

Gonzales requests quotes for universal broadband service

Bringing broadband service into every home has long been a goal of the City of Gonzales, a town of 8,500 residents located in California’s Salinas Valley. Yesterday, the City took a big step in that direction by releasing a Request for Quotes that asks broadband providers to put an offer on the table…

The City wishes to enter into an extended term contract with one Respondent to provide consistent, reliable access to basic internet service to each housing unit and household (collectively, “Residence”) at a fixed monthly cost to the City.


Gonzales, California putting broadband into every home, business

Basic broadband in every home and fast fiber for every business: that’s the goal endorsed on Monday by Gonzales city council members. The plan, as presented by staff, is to issue two requests for proposals.

The residential RFP is ambitious. There are 1,800 homes in Gonzales, which is located in California’s Salinas Valley. The city wants to provide a basic, lifeline-level of service to each one. As the report presented to the council explains

Staff has been exploring the possibility of entering into a bulk services agreement with a qualified Internet service provider (ISP) to deliver a basic level of Internet access to every home in Gonzales.


Muni broadband endorsed by Comcast, again

26 February 2017 by Steve Blum
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Comcast jumps on board.

Are you wondering whether or not you live in a place where Comcast will soon upgrade at least some of its broadband infrastructure and technology to the high speed, DOCSIS 3.1 standard? All you have to do is check to see whether there’s a municipal broadband project underway nearby. That’s a very reliable way to gauge the esteem that Comcast bestows upon your town.

According to a story by Daniel Frankel in FierceCable, Chattanooga, Tennessee is the next stop on Comcast’s DOCSIS 3.1 road trip, where it will begin offer much cheaper 1 gigabit service to homes and businesses…

Comcast had been delivering its pricey 10-gig fiber service to local Chattanooga businesses, and 2-gig fiber service to local residences.


Muni fiber build RFP issued by Union City, California

20 September 2016 by Steve Blum
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A lot of long haul fiber criss-crosses through Union City, a town of about 70,000 people tucked in between Hayward and Fremont in the East Bay area, just north of Silicon Valley. The City of Union City has issued a request for proposals from companies interested in bidding to “design and install a high-speed dark fiber network in City-owned conduit” to take advantage of that wealth, and to spur development of a new business and residential area…

The Union City Station District is a high-density development area located around the Union City BART Station.


Net neutrality decision boosts FCC muni preemption case, but not enough

21 June 2016 by Steve Blum
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Still not going anywhere.

The federal appeals court ruling that upheld the Federal Communications Commission’s common carrier and network neutrality rules for broadband did collateral damage to the State of Tennessee’s attempt to overturn the FCC’s preemption of state restrictions on local municipal broadband initiatives. But it doesn’t appear fatal, or even particularly serious.

At the same 2015 meeting where it voted to regulate broadband as a common carrier service, the FCC also decided to toss out state laws in Tennessee and North Carolina that prevented two muni fiber systems from expanding into neighboring jurisdictions.… More

AT&T's political troops muscle Tennessee into submission

28 March 2016 by Steve Blum
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Lobbyists, primarily from AT&T, won the day in the Tennessee legislature when they leaned hard enough on a handful of lawmakers and killed a bill that would have allowed municipal broadband utilities to expand beyond city limits. According to a story in the Chattanooga Time Free Press, a “platoon” of AT&T political operatives descended on the Tennessee capitol to convince a bare majority of a key subcommittee to kill a compromise bill that would have allowed one pilot project to move ahead.… More

Google might motivate taxpayers to back FTTH

From a city’s perspective, Google Fiber’s new business model – lease existing wholesale fiber, light it up and sell retail service to subscriber-dense buildings – is both an opportunity and a problem. The opportunity is clear: rapid deployment of fast, cheap fiber to the home (and business) service for the lucky few that can get it.

And that’s also the problem. The lucky few part anyway, particularly if municipally-owned fiber is involved. One of the fundamental tenets of city government is that municipal services are available to everyone.… More

Wheeler keeps muni broadband cards close to chest

10 February 2016 by Steve Blum
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Muni broadband? Never heard of it.

Eight republican senators, including presidential hopeful Marco Rubio, sent a letter to Federal Communications Commission chairman Tom Wheeler asking four questions about municipal broadband (h/t to the Baller Herbst list for the pointer). Or it might have been eight separate letters – doesn’t matter. Wheeler sent separately addressed but otherwise identical letters in reply.

If you take Wheeler’s letter at face value, the FCC has no plans to anything at all regarding municipal broadband.… More

Muni broadband debate heats up in Tennessee, because it can

8 February 2016 by Steve Blum
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Something you don’t see in Washington.

All or nothing federal policies are great when you’re getting it all, but when the political winds shift and you end up with nothing, it’s not so wonderful. That’s why I think the Federal Communications Commission’s preemption of state restrictions on municipal broadband is a bad idea: its current more is better policy will only last as long as three commissioners agree with it, but its authority to regulate muni broadband will live forever.… More