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Viewpoints: Letters / Opinions

Vote ‘Yes’ on Proposition 2 – KPU Undersea Fiber Optic Cable to Prince Rupert

By Ed Cushing


September 28, 2019
Saturday PM

To the editor:

This letter is in support of voting ‘Yes’ on Proposition 2 (KPU Undersea Fiber Optic Cable to Prince Rupert). In part, this letter is also in response to David Hanger’s letter, regarding his opinion of Proposition 2.

Frankly, Mr. Hanger’s unfortunate personal attacks are not worthy of a response. However, Mr. Hanger’s letter makes some technical assertions that, in the interest of accuracy, are worth correcting.

Simply put, I appreciate Mr. Hanger’s interest in Proposition 2. However, with all due respect, every technical and/or theoretical assertion raised in his letter is incorrect, inaccurate, or simply untrue. Regarding Low Earth Satellites LEO – someday LEO will be a complementary service (especially for folks in very rural communities, cabins, on boats, etc.). However, as a practical technical matter, in the real world LEO will probably deliver 200 Megs at best. And we are rapidly approaching a world wherein most every home and business will require 1,000 Megs. LEO will not provide the very large bandwidth connection our community (and your home, and your business) will require between Ketchikan and Seattle.


Proposition 2 is as exactly as it has been advertised. Proposition 2 (because it is a Revenue Bond) cannot, will not, and does not affect property taxes. Upon ‘turning up’ the new undersea cable, KPU will ‘turn down’ capacity we presently rent from a competitor. We will then use the former ‘rent money’ to make the Revenue Bond payments. The Revenue Bond does not cost taxpayers anything and promises to cost our customers very little, if anything. From a financial perspective, Proposition 2 is a ‘no brainer’. Conceptually, we will simply stop paying our landlord over $1,000,000 per year in ‘rent’ – and instead will use the rent-money to build our own ‘house’.
As a strategic matter, the new undersea fiber will close the loop on creating the very best future-proofed local telecommunications network in the United States. As well, construction of the undersea fiber optic cable to Prince Rupert will physically connect our community to the mainland – equipping our network with a virtually unlimited capacity for broadband and/or Internet connectivity – no matter what the digital future might bring.

Perhaps most importantly, by virtue of KPU owning its own fiber to the mainland, for the first time in 80 years our community will finally be control of its telecommunications destiny. No longer will our community be required to purchase connections from a monopoly competitor – nor will we any longer be controlled by the for-profit whims of corporations in Anchorage, Denver, or New Jersey.
KPU Telecommunications truly is your company. Your vote determines whether KPU (and our community) has a vibrant future-proofed data-rich broadband/Internet future – or not.

Please vote Yes on Proposition 2.

Ed Cushing
Division Manager of KPU Telecommunications
Ketchikan, Alaska





Editor's Note:

The text of this letter was NOT edited by the SitNews Editor.


Received September 26, 2019 - Published September 29, 2019

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