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West Virginia's Broadband Incompetence Balloons
Significantly Fewer Locations to Get Fiber
by Karl Bode 08:11AM Wednesday Jan 09 2013
West Virginia is one of the worst connected states in the nation, something that was supposed to be helped by a $126.3-million federal stimulus grant intended to improve state broadband. Instead, as a series of excellent reports in the Charleston Gazette have illustrated over the past year, state leaders doled out most of that money to Verizon, who convinced the (either corrupt or totally incompetent) state officials to spend it on ridiculously overpriced, overpowered and unused routers, and ridiculously overpaid consultants who haven't actually accomplished anything.

Gazette reporter Eric Eyre has done a great job digging through the state's incompetence and/or corruption, triggering a state investigation into state leaders and Verizon's role in the fiasco. His latest story digs into the dysfunction further, noting that after all the money spent on over-powered routers and over-paid consultants, significantly fewer anchor institutions will be getting fiber:
quote:
Two years ago, former Gov. Joe Manchin's administration promised to use the federal stimulus money to build fiber at 1,064 community anchors -- schools, libraries, health centers, State Police detachments, county courthouses, 911 centers and other public agencies, according to the state's grant application.

But the state is on pace to bring high-speed fiber to just 639 of those 1,064 public facilities. The remaining sites will only get routers, according to a Dec. 21 project report.
You have to assume the full deployment target would have been met if the state hadn't used Verizon to provide apparently useless consultants and routers so powerful many small libraries can't even use them. It's all particularly unfortunate given the fact that the funds really could have helped a state that drastically needs broadband infrastructure improvement.

It's also rather disgusting that Verizon's playing a starring role in all of this, given that a large portion of the state's broadband woes can be attributed to the telco, who for the last decade neglected state infrastructure before ultimately unloading it to Frontier Communications. Now they're providing the kind of "help" the under-connected state residents could probably do without.

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DataRiker
Premium
join:2002-05-19
00000

3 edits

Why do you even need consultants?

Simply tell the engineers where you want the service to go. In the end the engineers make all the decisions anyway.

I don't know why this is a surprise to anybody, ultra large corporations are about as inefficient as big government, and when you combine the two its just a big foul crap filled toilet.

elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·EarthLink

1 recommendation

Re: Why do you even need consultants?

The problem here is the expectation that a central government can be responsible to collect and then redistribute tax money in an appropriate manner.

Once you accept that premise, you are doomed to fail.

Let people keep their money in the first place, and decide for themselves how to spend it.

FFH
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

Re: Why do you even need consultants?

said by elray:

The problem here is the expectation that a central government can be responsible to collect and then redistribute tax money in an appropriate manner.

Once you accept that premise, you are doomed to fail.

Let people keep their money in the first place, and decide for themselves how to spend it.

Good philosophy; that our pols completely ignore. A pols reason for existence is wealth redistribution, with themselves taking a cut of every transaction.
--
A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the voters discover that they can vote themselves money from the public treasury.
Telco

join:2008-12-19
Reviews:
·Callcentric

1 edit
lol. Sure thing, we'll just pave our own roads and install our own FTTH network.

"The problem here is .. government ... collect ... redistribute tax money."

You said it right there. Rather than collect taxes and use it to build their own FTTH network, they are "redistributing tax money" to private companies who will charge them 5 to 100 times the price. In addition, you fail to accept that the private sector who is supposed to do eeeeevvvrything better, failed epically here.

You guys seem to assume that if you repeat these baseless talking-points and cherry-pick examples to suit the narrative, it will somehow come true.

BTW This is a classic Red state in play here, where they run the government inefficiently, and then use the imminent failure as an example to support their dogma against government.
elray

join:2000-12-16
Santa Monica, CA
Reviews:
·Time Warner Cable
·EarthLink

Re: Why do you even need consultants?

said by Telco:

lol. Sure thing, we'll just pave our own roads and install our own FTTH network.

"The problem here is .. government ... collect ... redistribute tax money."

You said it right there. Rather than collect taxes and use it to build their own FTTH network, they are "redistributing tax money" to private companies who will charge them 5 to 100 times the price. In addition, you fail to accept that the private sector who is supposed to do eeeeevvvrything better, failed epically here.

Government has purpose. Limited purpose.

We can expect a central government to set standards for telecom and broadband interconnectivity, but beyond that, once you expect them to make everything "fair", the price goes up for everyone, and coverage doesn't happen, as the capital is taxed away, and the local entrepreneurs stand down, knowing that those with friends in the statehouse can squash them like a bug.

Not sure why you embrace government at all costs.

We would certainly be better off building (locally contracting) our own roads and FTTH.
MURICA

join:2013-01-03

Re: Why do you even need consultants?

Are you posting from an alternate universe where state subsidized 1 Gbps FTTH doesn't exist in Japan, South Korea, and Europe?
itguy05

join:2005-06-17
Carlisle, PA
said by Telco:

BTW This is a classic Red state in play here, where they run the government inefficiently, and then use the imminent failure as an example to support their dogma against government.

Actually, it's the blue states that are in financial troubles. And if you take it even further, Democratic local government also has a high bankruptcy rate. That has been proven here in the USA time and time again.

ropeguru
Premium
join:2001-01-25
Mechanicsville, VA

This should also...

Be prompting a Federal investigation as to how the stimulus money was spent. Then, the Federal government should be demanding that every penny be paid back out of State only funds so that we recover the wasted tax money we gave these retards.

And people wonder why WV is so backwards? Here is one of your reasons.

cableties
Premium
join:2005-01-27

Re: This should also...

Yeah, but if they need meth, they get it!
(reference Whites of WV)
--
Splat

jap
Premium
join:2003-08-10
038xx

Verizon should be banned from receiving fed monies

VZ has been the worst corporate actor in telco. They'll robber baron each and every project they can every time. So far all they get is public tongue lashings which, as a tax payer, is incredibly maddening. Individuals can and do deprive them of patronage but our little dollars can't compete with suckling the public money teat.

Total failure of governance at both State and Fed level here. And government can fix this one still but....
Sammer

join:2005-12-22
Canonsburg, PA

Re: Verizon should be banned from receiving fed monies

Actually AT&T, AT&T Mobility, Verizon, and Verizon Wireless not receiving any Universal Service Fund money (not a penny) would be the first step toward improving the USF.

diablo1892
Plough, sew, water, harvest. Repeat.

join:2011-04-21
Friendly, WV
Reviews:
·Frontier Communi..
·HughesNet Satell..

Don't care anymore

We already have a service here in WV, its called HughesNet by Satellite and its working just grand.. So if everyone would hock up to the satellite world we can all skip this and start depending on satellite. Also, we dont have to be reminded over and over that broadband internet here in our state sucks, yes that we already know thats cause we should just go with satellite end of story.
mlcarson

join:2001-09-20
Los Alamos, NM

Re: Don't care anymore

You're the first person that I ever heard tout satellite as a viable alternative to broadband internet.

CoolMan

join:2008-01-07
Tennessee
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Charter
·Suddenlink

Re: Don't care anymore

said by mlcarson:

You're the first person that I ever heard tout satellite as a viable alternative to broadband internet.

I think he is being sarcastic, just look at his review he gave HugesNet.

»Review of HughesNet Satellite Broadband by diablo1892

diablo1892
Plough, sew, water, harvest. Repeat.

join:2011-04-21
Friendly, WV
Reviews:
·Frontier Communi..
·HughesNet Satell..

Re: Don't care anymore

Actually I am not being sarcastic, and that review i did a long time ago, it was when Hughes was only providing us 170kb/s but now we upgraded and now getting over 1mb/s I don't see broadband coming through my area in a million years or if our governor had a bunch of money now to do it, its not going to happen today, not this year or next, in fact it will never happen and all of us in my neighborhood know it. I was told that we will get high speed connection last year in spring, the guy said 9 months (roughly) so we waited and still nothing.. We call and call but we get the same answer again and again, your area dont support or capabilities, bye.
--
HT1000/ BeamID 32/ Power Max plan/ 4 pcs on a D-Link wired switch/ wireless D-Link router with password
Support only the gaming company's that matter the most, pay for something that actually is worth buying
or has a good reason for how much it's worth.
dekerfman

join:2004-10-07
Weirton, WV

Good service is available in WV

I'm enjoying my 50Mbps, TV and one of those new fangled telephones here in WV. WV may be red in presidential elections, but very blue in others. By the way, I even have an indoor toilet and running water.

CoolMan

join:2008-01-07
Tennessee
kudos:2
Reviews:
·Charter
·Suddenlink

Re: Good service is available in WV

said by dekerfman:

I'm enjoying my 50Mbps, TV and one of those new fangled telephones here in WV. WV may be red in presidential elections, but very blue in others. By the way, I even have an indoor toilet and running water.

Yes, the parts of WV that can receive Comcast or Suddenlink do have a viable broadband solution.
PX Eliezer7
Premium
join:2008-08-09
Hutt River
kudos:13
Reviews:
·callwithus
·voip.ms

1 edit

Incompetent state government

WV has an incompetent state government.

Another example, of all the land-grant colleges in all the 50 states (such as Purdue, Auburn, Cornell, Michigan State, Texas A&M), the ONLY one to EVER be stripped of land-grant status was West Virginia State University in Charleston. This was due to the state legislature cutting off funds, after that Federal funding was terminated.

This lasted from 1957 to 2000, a long time considering that they had Senator Byrd to help fix it!
Beezel

join:2008-12-15
Las Vegas, NV

Re: Incompetent state government

said by PX Eliezer7:

WV has an incompetent state government.

Another example, of all the land-grant colleges in all the 50 states (such as Purdue, Auburn, Cornell, Michigan State, Texas A&M), the ONLY one to EVER be stripped of land-grant status was West Virginia State University in Charleston.

WV. State University is in Institute WV., WV. University is in Morgantown WV., and Charleston University is in Charleston. Formally called Morris-Harvey.
PX Eliezer7
Premium
join:2008-08-09
Hutt River
kudos:13
Reviews:
·callwithus
·voip.ms

Re: Incompetent state government

said by Beezel:

WV. State University is in Institute WV.

Yes, thank you. This is indeed the school being discussed.
»www.wvstateu.edu/about-wvsu/history

However, Institute WV is part of the Charleston metropolitan area.

RAZ Black

join:2001-10-04
Mansfield, TX
Reviews:
·Charter

what a waste...

that federal stimulus was a huge waste and did nothing to improve anything except:

* make a few corporate executives richer
* make a few government programs fatter and look really stupid

here's an example from Forbes...

»www.forbes.com/sites/nickschulz/···program/

yes, that's right... for the low low price of 350,000$ USD.. you too can get cable TV.

what a bunch of dimwits...
--
-= ok, who turned out the lights? =-
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY
Reviews:
·ooma
·Optimum Online
·Verizon FiOS

cliff notes, harumph

Now you know why the country's going broke.. money that could be going to build a better future if it were spent wisely instead goes to corrupt and incompetent municipalities which are co-conspirators in allowing profiteers to plunder the treasury to little benefit of the American people. Anybody with a 12th grade education should know that a $10,000+ piece of networking equipment is the equivalent of the $10k hammer.. and the $500 band-aid at the hospital.

Every now and then you see some watchdog type news report of graft, waste and profiteering and the people go harumph to do something about it.. but they are looking a the mole-hill.. look at the WHOLE MOUND for a change..

»www.youtube.com/watch?v=JN99jshaQbY