Monday, July 25, 2005

WBS: "BellSouth, Cox Lose Battle Of The Bayous"

What's Being Said (WBS) Dept.

Except for a little bit of overreaching that trades in the mighty Vermillion River and our midsized city for bayous and small town status (they've been reading USAToday) this story is a pretty fun read. The blooper:
The small town in the bayous has been garnering national attention because of the battle, in which the incumbents attempted to convince residents that they would be better off waiting until the year – some unspecified time in the future – when BellSouth and/or Cox might be willing to put in their own FTTx installations. Lafayette – which had faced the same situation 109 years ago with electricity and, as a result, wound up building its own utility system – wasn’t willing to wait.

TelecomWeb news break tracked down an ebullient Lafayette City Parish President (the local equivalent of mayor) Joey Durel in Washington, D.C., where he was on unrelated municipal business. Durel notes that both the vote (12,481 “yes” votes vs. 7,621 “no” votes) and the turnout of 27 percent of the voters showed massive public support for the city to float the $125 million in bonds it will take to fiber the town. Original estimates had been that only about 15 percent of Lafayette voters would go to the polls, a typical turnout for a one-issue referendum with no political offices on the ballot.

“The message that (the vote results) sends to the incumbents should be pretty strong,” Durel told us.
They're also promising an "in depth" report in their subscription online magazine. They'll let you sample it for free though. Scroll down....

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