The Slow Death of Google Fiber? CEO out, expansion halted, employees fired

This article was originally posted at FreeUTOPIA.org. I’ve long maintained that Google isn’t in the ISP business for the long haul. I said over four years ago that the odds of your city seeing it were astronomically low. Well, now Google is basically saying the same thing. The CEO announced that they have halted the expansion of the network, let go employees in towns where they haven’t build, oh yeah, and he’s leaving for “other opportunities”. I’ve had multiple first-hand reports of users in Provo who have been unable to get signed…

The Macquarie Deal Sounds OK, But History Counsels for Caution [The Hub Debate]

This is  a Hub Debate on the proposed Macquarie acquisition of UTOPIA. Participate in the comments or submit a response for publication to UtahPoliticoHub@gmail.com. Resolved: “UTOPIA cities are being offered a lifeline by Macquarie and, despite the estimated $18 to $20 per household utility fee increase, should take the deal.” When I first moved to Layton in 2009, I looked around for good Internet service, and discovered that Layton was part of UTOPIA. I was told that the network build out was about three blocks from my home and would be there in no less than…

The meat of the Macquarie deal: pay less, get more [The Hub Debate]

This is  a Hub Debate on the proposed Macquarie acquisition of UTOPIA. Participate in the comments or submit a response for publication to UtahPoliticoHub@gmail.com. Resolved: “UTOPIA cities are being offered a lifeline by Macquarie and, despite the estimated $18 to $20 per household utility fee increase, should take the deal.” It’s not too often that you get a win-win scenario, but that’s exactly what Macquarie, an Australian investment bank, is bringing to the table for UTOPIA cities. The meat of the deal is that each household will be assessed a utility fee between $18 and…

Provo Sprawl

The Deseret News published an article this week titled “Utah among states with the greatest urban sprawl.” The article details the alarming trend to pave over and “build out” our rapidly dwindling open space, and it spurred some discussion on local social media. Brigham Young University employee Brigham Daniels posted on the Facebook group Provo Forward: Future growth seems almost certain. The only question is whether we will help guide that growth or whether it will guide us… Ignoring how we grow is one of the easiest ways to ruin our…

Utah Municipal Power Association’s “united front”

Most people who watch the state legislature agree that this year’s session was “Utah’s Clean Air Moment.” Everybody seemed to come to the same conclusion at the same time–  the air was bad, and something should be done about it. So in 2014, our elected representatives addressed a “record number of proposals designed to improve our air.”   Studies were done. A caucus was formed. Appropriations were made. Over 20 bills were introduced. Some actually passed. One of the contributing factors to the increased awareness of our air quality problems was Provo’s first place rating…