Rochester MN looks at municipal network – next decision to be made April 17 (today)

Rochester has been looking into a municipal network for a while. Back in 2010, the City Council thought about and then decided against a municipal network feasibility study. Then in 2015, Alcatel-Lucent has offered to do a broadband feasibility study for Rochester – for free. That report came out in 2016

The report included a capital investment of about $53 million on the city’s behalf, a cost that would have to be issued in bonds, raising the total investment to near $67 million.

And started a community-wide conversation. Now Gov Technology reports that another report is needed to help the community leaders makes a decision. And the price tag for that study is $47,000…

The further study would investigate whether a city-owned internet service could be sustained in the current market and what options exist for operating the service, which could include adding it to RPU’s lineup, creating a new department or seeking a private entity to provide oversight. …

The additional study discussed Monday would seek to determine whether the local market makes the effort feasible.

Council Member Ed Hruska said he was hoping to have more answers before spending additional city funds on the prospect of municipal broadband.

“I guess I was expecting a little bit more detail,” he said.

The council is expected to consider the funding request during its April 17 meeting [today].


This entry was posted in Community Networks, MN by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

I have a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science. I have been interested or involved in providing access to information through the Internet since 1994, when I worked for Minnesota’s first Internet service provider. I am pleased to be a part of the Blandin on Broadband Team. I also work with MN Coalition on Government Information, Minnesota Rural Partners, and the American Society for Information Science and Technology.

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