SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska


By Scott Willis


April 29, 2008

So who owns KPU?

The City Of Ketchikan dba Ketchikan Public Utilities. It is the City registered voters that can sell or stop the transfer of KPU Telephone in an election.

How much money are we talking about?

Tough question Pete, you see, the Telephone division is one of the only Industries other than tourism that actually makes money on this Island. KPU Telephone Division brings in Millions of Dollars and subsidizes Electric and Water Divisions to help keep the total utility price down for the rate payers. So when telephone, TV and Internet users buy KPU services, the money is recycled from Telephone to Electric to Water and goes back into the Island economy. The City is very lucky to have this utility and this is Ketchikan's Golden Goose.

What about selling at a price that will pay all residential electrical, telephone and utility bills for the next 10 years at each residential location according to current usage?

At the current market rate Pete, the Telephone Utility is only worth about 10.6 million dollars current market value based on number of lines and complexity of equipment, etc. Consider KPU has burned up 2.6 Million in Diesel fuel for power generation already this year. How long do you think the remaining millions would last? There will be no ten years from now with the KPU Telephone sale, except Utility Bills that only wealthy and affluent jewelry vendors can afford. After the Brokerage Costs and Considerations are paid out to only a select few men that hope to sell KPU (oh, did I mention those men are planning to retire the moment they Sell KPU?) and once the Goose that lays the golden eggs is gone, the people of this community can expect the electric bills to go exponential, water bills to be ridiculous and for telephone, the "competition" can then sell service as high as they can get for it.

Have no fear, those "select few" who want to Sell KPU plan to retire and leave the Island. They will not be affected by the sale other than the cash-out they take with them.

Any person in the community left behind from the KPU Telephone Sale may be forced to turn the electricity off in the cold winter to afford things like food for the kids, gas to get to work and other things like that. You can ask your City Council Member not to sell you out. I did. The City Councilman I spoke with said he was against the sale then went in session and voted to sell.

Don't Sell KPU, It's Really Really Stupid. Yep! Same guy!

Based on the Voting activity of our current City Council's actions about selling KPU, Jobs and people are of no concern any more, it s all about getting that BIG money! I feel very ill thinking as a tax-paying citizen that my local government will cut me down and sell me like a cash crop just to kowtow to cruise ship visitors without regard to this town's future. What happens when Petrol costs soar and "Cruising Alaska" trickles off? Then What?

Scott Willis
Ketchikan, AK

About: "6 year KPU Journeyman Central Office Equipment Technician. Former Quest Systems Engineer, AT&T communications Engineer,15 year Telecom Technician"

Received April 27, 2008 - Published April 29, 2008


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Stories In The News
Ketchikan, Alaska