Another Small Michigan Community Will Vote to Provide Local Broadband, Shirking Big Telecom

Date: 8 Mar 2018 | posted in: MuniNetworks | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

When residents and business owners completed a survey in 2013 as the community considered what route to take, 70 percent of respondents said that their current ISP did not meet their needs; 95 percent expressed an interest in alternative choices for Internet access. Since then, community leaders have hired a consultant to develop a feasibility study and Sharon Broadband Yes, a grassroots group advocating for a fiber network, has formed to educate the public.

The group is asking voters to pass a broadband bond proposal to allow the community to issue $4.9 million in general obligation bonds to fund a fiber optic network project. … Read More

Want To Topple Telecom Oligopolies? Support Locally Owned Broadband

Date: 15 Feb 2018 | posted in: MuniNetworks | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Rural communities seeking better broadband have options beyond big telecom.
This past August, the residents of the Republican-leaning Michigan town of Lyndon Township overwhelmingly voted to raise their property taxes. What spurred this rural community to violate the core Republican tenant of minimal taxation?

Lack of high-speed internet access.… Read More

Commentary: Local Communities Deserve to Make their Own Choices

Date: 24 Nov 2017 | posted in: Media Coverage, MuniNetworks | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

This article was originally published in Port Huron Times-Herald on November 14th, 2017. Recently, a Michigan state lawmaker went viral on the Internet — but for the wrong reasons. Last month, state Rep. Michele Hoitenga filed a bill that would preempt local governments from spending public funds to build community broadband Internet networks. Across the country, high-speed … Read More

Protecting Communities from Gentrification

Date: 23 Oct 2017 | posted in: From the Desk of David Morris, The Public Good | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

We have a workable model for making housing affordable and protecting neighborhood residents from displacement: a Community Land Trust. Only one city to date has embraced it aggressively and, perhaps unsurprisingly, it began to do so when Bernie Sanders was its mayor. Now a coalition is pushing Baltimore to make a major investment in this model.… Read More

Federal Communications Commission Complaint Reveals AT&T is Accused of Digital Redlining in Detroit

Date: 18 Oct 2017 | posted in: MuniNetworks | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

In Detroit, AT&T is facing a formal FCC complaint accusing the telecom giant of deploying discriminatory “digital redlining” tactics. This is the second such complaint filed against the telecommunications giant since the first of the year. NDIA’s report does not specifically invoke race or ethnicity— opting for the phrasing ‘lower-income neighborhoods’. The socio-economic realities of these communities, a result of the banking industries mid-century redlining tactics, has become the impetus for new types of discriminatory investment in these same areas.… Read More

Anti-Municipal Broadband Bill In Michigan Pulls No Punches

Date: 16 Oct 2017 | posted in: MuniNetworks | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

Torpedo legislation aimed at municipal network initiatives don’t usually appear in October, but Michigan’s year-round legislature is making 2017 atypical. Last week, Freshman Representative Michele Hoitenga from the rural village of Manton in Wexford County introduced a bill banning investment in municipal networks. HB 5099 is short; it decrees that local communities cannot use federal, state, or … Read More

Verizon Will Cut Off Rural Subscribers In Thirteen States, You Listening FCC?

Date: 27 Sep 2017 | posted in: MuniNetworks | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

A recent proposal being considered by the FCC that has raised the loudest outcry has been the status of mobile broadband in rural areas. Now that Verizon is discontinuing rural subscriber accounts, the FCC will be able to see those concerns come to life. Dear John… The company has decided to cut service to scores of customers in 13 … Read More

Voters Say “Yes!” to Fiber-to-the-Home in Lyndon Township, Michigan

Date: 16 Aug 2017 | posted in: MuniNetworks | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

In a record high turnout for a non-general election, voters in Lyndon Township, Michigan, decided to approve a bond proposal to fund a publicly owned Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) network. The measure passed with 66 percent of voters (622 votes) choosing yes and 34 percent (321 votes) voting no.   Geographically Close, Technologically Distant The community is located only … Read More

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