AT&T, cable lobbying drive Chattanooga’s EPB to shelve network expansion bill

Market Square in Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA, ...

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By Sean Buckley

EPB, the Chattanooga, Tenn.-based service provider known for its 1 Gbps service, and its supporters have decided to put on mothballs a new bill that would enable municipal broadband operators to expand outside of their service areas.

If the “Broadband Infrastructure for Regional Economic Development Act of 2011″ bill had gone through, municipal-run broadband providers like EPB would have been able to extend service up to 30 miles outside their service areas. One of EPB’s motivating factors to have the bill was to bring service to Bradley County, where Amazon.com is building a second distribution center.

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Controversial Broadband Bill Moving Forward in North Carolina

April 1, 2011 By Brian Heaton

Downtown Raleigh, North Carolina as seen from ...

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A bill that would place restrictions on the establishment of municipal broadband networks is gaining traction in North Carolina. The proposed legislation, House Bill 129, was passed by the state’s House of Representatives in an 81 to 37 vote on Monday, March 28, and is making its way through the state Senate.

The bill, which has sparked controversy across the state, is called the “Level Playing Field/Local Gov’t Competition” act. The legislation would require communities to alter the way networks are financed and deployed. One section of the bill mandates that a municipal network not price services below their actual costs. The intent of the language appears to be an attempt to protect companies from unfair competition, even though private companies regularly offer incentive deals to attract customers.

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Google fiber: Palo Alto loses out to Kansas City

Midwest community to get ultra high-speed Internet project instead of Silicon Valley

by Sue Dremann
Palo Alto Weekly Staff

The Official Seal of Palo Alto, CA

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A Midwest city has beaten out all Silicon Valley contenders, including Palo Alto, to become Google’s first fiber-optics-wired city, executives announced Wednesday (March 30).

Kansas City, with a population of 145,786, was chosen out of 1,100 cities that applied in 2010 for the “Google Fiber for Communities” project, sponsored by the Mountain View tech giant.

The ultra high-speed fiber-to-the-home connections will provide Internet access at 100 times faster than typical broadband services, the company said. Fiber transmits light over fiber-optic cable — a strand of glass as thin as a hair — to send and receive data. It is far faster than electric signals sent over metal wires.

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Ultra high-speed broadband is coming to Kansas City, Kansas

 

Google Fiber Logo As part of our overall goal to make the web better for users, last year we announced a new project: to provide a community with Internet access more than 100 times faster than what most Americans have today. The response was overwhelming—nearly 1,100 cities felt the need for speed—and we were thrilled by the enthusiasm we saw across the country for better and faster web connections. Thank you to every community and individual that submitted a response, joined a rally, starred in a YouTube video or otherwise participated.

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Who should build the next generation of high-speed networks?

by Jennifer Vogel, Minnesota Public Radio

Rural Minnesota

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Windom, Minn. — Dan Olsen, who runs the municipal broadband service in Windom, was just about to leave work for the night when he got a call. The muckety-mucks at Fortune Transportation, a trucking company on the outskirts of town, were considering shuttering their office and leaving the area.

“They said, Dan, you need to get your butt out here now,” Olsen recalls. “I got there and they said, ‘You need to build fiber out here. What would it take for you to do it?’”

Fortune, which employs 47 people in the town of 4,600, two and a half hours southwest of the Twin Cities, relies on plenty of high-tech gadgetry. Broadband Internet access figures into how the company bids for jobs, communicates with road-bound truckers, controls the temperatures in its refrigerated trucks and remotely views its office in Roswell, New Mexico. Fortune even uses the Internet to monitor where and to what extent drivers fill their gas tanks in order to save money.

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Florida (MA) Approves First Step For Broadband System

By Kathy Keeser

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FLORIDA, Mass. — Voters on Wednesday night approved the establishment of a municipal lighting plant, taking the first step in the development of a cooperative broadband system.

About 30 voters took time out to decide four articles at Wednesday’s special town meeting, deciding on school repairs, broadband and wind projects.

The first two articles gave town approval to the continuance of repairs to Gabriel Abbott Memorial School, including to the roof and to the water main. Both warrants quickly passed 28-0.

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Elblag Connects Municipal Sites Via Cisco Borderless Network Infrastructure

WEBWIRE – Thursday, March 10, 2011

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Polish City Builds a Network Platform to Deliver New and Enhanced Services to Residents and Visitors

ELBLAG, Poland – – Cisco today announced that the city of Elblag has chosen the Cisco® Borderless Network solution to build a municipal broadband network. Elblag is a port city in northern Poland with more than 120,000 inhabitants and access to the Baltic Sea.

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