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Huntsville Utilities: “We Think We Made The Right Choice”

June 23, 2017

Earlier this month, the price for shares of Alphabet stock hit $1,000. The stock’s price is up more than 25 percent this year. Why does this matter in the debate about municipal broadband?  Because Alphabet owns Google. And Google owns Google Fiber. Google Fiber, as this blog has noted, uses taxpayer money to build high-speed …

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Economist: Opelika, Ala. Shouldn’t Expand Its Municipal Network

April 13, 2017

Earlier this month, an Alabama senate committee rejected a bill that would allow Opelika’s municipal broadband network to expand beyond its state-mandated footprint. According to George Ford, chief economist of the Phoenix Center for Advanced Legal & Economic Public Policy Studies, the Senate’s decision was the right one for taxpayers. In a column posted Sunday …

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Auburn Economics Professor: Opelika Network Shouldn’t Be Allowed To Expand

April 4, 2017

Alabama state lawmakers should not allow the city of Opelika in Lee County to expand its government-run internet system. That’s the opinion of Alan Seals, the director of graduate studies at Auburn University’s Department of Economics. Seals discussed his views in a column earlier this week at Yellow Hammer News, an Alabama news website devoted …

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Alabama State Senators Oppose Government-Owned Broadband

October 26, 2016

Last week the Florence, Ala. Times Daily published an op-ed by state Sen. Clay Scofield (R-Marshall) and state Sen. Rodger Smitherman (D-Birmingham) in which the two legislators oppose government-owned Internet Service Providers (ISPs). Instead of competing against private ISPs, the two legislators argue that, to expand broadband to more areas of their state, government must …

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State Senators: Alabama Better Off Without Municipal Broadband

September 21, 2016

As construction on Huntsville, Ala.’s municipal broadband network began last week, Alabama State Senators Clay Scofield and Rodger Smitherman continued their efforts to explain that the best way to enhance high-speed internet access is “to work with private sector internet service providers, not against them.” In their latest column on this issue, the senators used …

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Opelika, Ala. City Gigabit Network Has One Subscriber

September 14, 2016

Low subscribership is a problem that plagues many government-owned broadband networks. Worries about subscribership rates were one reason Seattle officials last year opted against building a citywide network. Just how bad can things get? To illustrate, readers should check out The American Spectator’s recent investigation into Opelika, Ala.’s network. As the Spectator explains, Opelika spent …

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In Alabama: What Is The Best Way To Promote Broadband Competition?

March 17, 2016

As the Coalition for the New Economy has reported over recent months, state lawmakers in Alabama currently are debating how to expand broadband access and adoption in their state. So far, policymakers have two, and perhaps three, very different approaches from which to choose. Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley wants to use federal and state tax …

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