When the city first announced high speed, fiber optic internet service was coming to Hudson, I was excited. 100 mb/s and greater reliability at the same costs as 30 mb/s service, the city said. Too good to be true? My Canadian friends had high speed internet, but our local providers were lagging. I was eager for change.
Spectrum and Windstream soon caught up and began offering accelerated speeds at competitive rates.
Hudson city leaders have pushed Velocity Broadband as an economic development benefit to draw new business. To date, they have "loaned" Velocity $3.85 million of your money and used the resources of Hudson Public Power (HPP) to get this government-run business operating. The service is currently wired to 230 customers along a 60-mile fiber line throughout the city.
After 3 years, there has yet to be a full and accurate accounting. Neither the debt service on the loan nor the HPP subsidies (of manpower, equipment, and supplies) have been included in the accounting of Velocity's operations. When city staff reports Velocity is "cash flow positive", it is saying Velocity took in more cash that month than it had expenses. Not a single loan payment has been made.
Council agreed to open Velocity to some Hudson residents and to some businesses in the City of Stow (along Norton / Seasons Road). Meanwhile, you are responsible for the financial burden and HPP customers pay extra in their monthly utility bill to support this initiative. For some, its a double whammy!
While proponents say Velocity will generate revenue for the city, opponents counter saying the city is unnecessarily competing with private enterprise which has substantially more capital than the city has in its coffers.
Let's get back to basics with common sense governance.
Elect Craig Shubert, Hudson Mayor
Tuesday, November 5