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Government Should Not Sell Retail Internet

As I’m frequently reminded, while certain people in Government feel they are the best at running everything, we the public know that’s not typically true. Sure they have their place in utilities like Water, Sewer, Police, Fire, parks, etc.. Things that are social in nature, but power or the Internet, that’s all private sector stuff.

Example after example comes back with cities, all dreamy eyed about providing Internet quickly see that it’s an expensive business, and takes constant reinvestment. A vast majority that we spend at Washington Broadband, is to put money back into our network both for maintenance, upgrades, and expansion.

The next time you hear of our government from the city to Yakima County plans to get into the Internet business, call and tell them NO! Here is a story that came out today:

City council takes first steps to sell off city’s cable TV, internet business


Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2023 — Tuesday night the Bardsdtown City Council approved a move that will lead to the sale of its cable TV and internet business known as Bardstown Connect.

A press release from City Hall explained that the city’s public utilities require ongoing infrastructure upgrades and those costs continue to increase each year.

And due to the community’s unprecedented growth, the costs of these upgrades will require more and more funding, nearly all of which would eventually need to be financed.

“This would lead to substantial increases in utility rates for our customers, going beyond the usual rise in cost of living and operating expenses. As a result, some much-needed projects could be delayed for years.”

Only a few Kentucky cities own and operate a cable and internet business like the City of Bardstown has operated for years. Big providers and Fortune 500 telecommunication companies dominate the internet and cable TV industry, and consumers here in Nelson County have a number of options available to them besides the city’s system.

Following the analysis of the city’s future utility needs and based on recommendations from a consultant, led the city council to vote Tuesday night to seek proposals to sell the cable TV and internet system.

Proceeds from the sale of Bardstown Connect will be used to provide needed capital to offset the debt the city will require to fund current and future utility investments.

According to the press release, this will serve to keep the city’s rates for its utilities competitive.

The funds can be used to help pay for other needs, which include an upgraded ore new police station, upgrades for the 911 Dispatch center, and needed funding for the Planning and Zoning Commission.

The City’s goal is to find a provider that can deliver the same or expanded services and maintain the City’s high level of customer service.

The transfer of ownership will not be a rapid one, the press release states. The process could take up to a year to complete.

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