UTOPIA cities may have to pay this year

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  • Disenchanted
    Dec. 21, 2009 4:11 p.m.

    I have Utopia installed in my home and have long since disconnected. The customer services is horrible! The video is very expensive and unreliable. They are dying a slow death which is totally inevitable. These cities will continue to dump millions down this hole until the bitter end just as they are in Provo.

  • comcast hater
    Dec. 13, 2009 2:30 p.m.

    comcast has been raping me for more than 20 years, and i have allowed that only because there has been no competing service, now that utopia is available in layton i was one of the first to DUMP COMCAST for my internet service, and as soon as utopia provides tv service i will dump comcast completely, GOOD RIDDANCE....i cant wait to tell comcast to come pick up their equipment, between 10:00 pm and 2:00 am on sunday morning when its convient for ME!

  • Centerville Resident For Utopia
    June 19, 2009 7:42 a.m.

    I live in Centerville and have access to only one "open" network: Qwest 1.5 Mb DSL. By "open" I mean the ability to connect to the ISP (Internet service provider) of my choice. This is an important feature for anyone trying to run a business from their home or workplace. Qwest, at anything above 1.5 Mb, and all Comcast connections are closed: they choose the ISP for you. UTOPIA is an open network and provides higher symmetrical speeds than what is offered by Qwest or Comcast. I want UTOPIA and I'm happy that Centerville made the decision to become and remain a UTOPIA city. If some of my taxes go to make UTOPIA a reality I'm OK with that.

  • Rick
    June 18, 2009 5:24 p.m.

    I live in Kaysville and pay $56 for Comcast, their cheapest Internet only connection. A friend living in Layton gets Utopia for $39 and several times the speed.

  • Against it from the start
    June 18, 2009 4:58 p.m.

    Now is the time for all the original UTOPIA directors to face civil charges for the mismanagement and theft of taxpayer funds! I'm not ready to accept an "Oh well..." from the current directors as punishment enough.

    Several professionals from both the technology and finance front warned the cities that UTOPIA was lying about the uptake rates and the real costs. It sounds like fraud to me.

  • Anonymous
    June 18, 2009 4:53 p.m.

    Is UTOPIA great? Maybe. Maybe not.

    One things sure, it's not great for people who don't want it and will never use it. But those people are going to be paying for it now, like it or not!

  • I wish.
    June 18, 2009 4:24 p.m.

    From BC, I need to use what you're using. I have Comcast (in SLC) and pay waayyyy more than the $24 UtopiaSmarts mentioned. I'd love to at least give Comcast a reason to lower their ridiculous prices, if not switch to a faster, cheaper (if UtopiaSmarts is correct) option. Competition is always good, it gives UTOPIA, Comcast, whomever a reason to work for the customer. I think it's been far too long since that happened, at least in SLC.

  • Can't affort UTOPIA
    June 18, 2009 4:22 p.m.

    The point that supporters of UTOPIA are missing is that you want what you cannot afford. The price you are paying for UTOPIA is being subsidized by taxpayers!

    You want to drive a new car, but you don't want to pay for it - you want taxpayers to pay for it.

    When do you think UTOPIA will have to raise rates to pay back the tax subsidies - or will you let taxpayers keep subsidizing your fast internet?

  • Tremontonite
    June 18, 2009 3:56 p.m.

    I voiced my concerns over this when it started & looked at it like it was the 'Simpsons Mono-Rail' ... & now it will be the 'Simpsons Mono-Rail'.

    Cities, (such as my Tremonton), should never go into a business of supplying/subsidizing a product or service that is already done by the private sector.

    All Aboard ... Tickets please!

  • Tremonton
    June 18, 2009 3:29 p.m.

    I can only speak regarding Tremonton, but there is no way UTOPIA is getting a 30% take rate!! Also, the Mayor of Tremonton liked his home service with UTOPIA so much that he switched BACK to the local phone company. Sounds like a great product!!!!

  • Lee
    June 18, 2009 3:00 p.m.

    Since when is it governments business to compete against the private sector. Why am I (a tax payer of WVC) asked to pay to support a services I don't want when I am receiving great services from Comcast? As to competition, there is Comcast, Qwest, Digis, Cell phone air cards, dial-up, etc. Comcast will have speeds at 50-100 Mbps by the end of the year, Qwest is rolling out speeds of up to 20 Mbps, and my Verizion air card gives me faster speed than I need for my computer. It seems when government tries to get involved in private sector business, all they do is end up costing residence more money for less service. (By the way, no service can get 30% coverage in just a few weeks for a normal neighborhood. I've worked in D2D sales for several years and hard to just get that many home in a neighborhood let alone convince them to make a switch.)

  • Centerville resident
    June 18, 2009 2:33 p.m.

    I live in Centerville and have never been asked to sign up for this even though the cable was put in about 2 years ago. (I'm sure that would not be the case if this was owned by a private company) I'm skeptical about this potential service and wondered when the cable went in how many years it would take before some kind of WIFI would be available and make all the dirt-moving obsolete. I'm on Comcast and it delivers everything I need fast enough. Please tell me why I should be needing the faster speeds.

  • From BC
    June 18, 2009 12:58 p.m.

    Reply to Anonymous | 12:14 p.m. June 18, 2009, Where do you live? If not in Brigham then the 3K does not apply to you. I am only speaking of BC, I don't know what the conditions are anywhere else. It is spread out over many years, but would cost at least 1/3 more than what I am paying for Comcast.

  • Re: ALPINE City
    June 18, 2009 12:30 p.m.

    I live in Orem. Our City might be out almost $3 million a year for 30 years. There's no UTOPIA to my house. I can't sign up. So you and I are in the same boat, except my city services might have to be cut to pay for this albatross.

    Consider yourself lucky. I don't get the people who read this doomsday article about how all the worst fears about UTOPIA are becoming reality, even though we were assured it never would happen (these cities were actually told they would MAKE money on the system, and they believed it!!!), and your comeback is, "Shucks, I'm mad my city didn't get in on this."


  • UTOPIA, I want you back
    June 18, 2009 12:22 p.m.

    I used to have UTOPIA, but was forced to move and am now really missing it. I am not a heavy internet user, but when I needed the speed it was always there.

    I have tried the best offerings from Comcast and Qwest and they aren't even close. People don't realize what they are missing out on until they have actually had the service and the ability to compare.

  • Anonymous
    June 18, 2009 12:14 p.m.

    $3000 LOL. Yeah we are all paying $3000 to get hooked up. NOT

    UTOPIA is the best thing that ever happened to us in regards to tv, internet, phone.

    We get blazing fast internet. Great phone service. The TV has improved a ton. Plus with the new guys taking over, the price dropped $10 a month.

  • Fiber optics is obsolete?
    June 18, 2009 10:57 a.m.

    What planet do you live on?

    Fiber is still the best any day of the week. What do you think Microsoft has?


  • Here We Go!
    June 18, 2009 10:49 a.m.

    The chickens are coming home to roost! Hope the taxpayers enjoy there fiber optic system that they can't even use. What a joke. "Utahn's Taken Again," should be the next headline.
    Oh by the way, Verizon and Sprint are rolling out a new LTE 4G wireless option that will offer more than enough speed to its users. All at no cost to cities or taxpayers. Unless of course they buy it.

  • UTOPIASmarts
    June 18, 2009 10:47 a.m.

    I think you might be taking the $3000.00 per install out of context a bit. I have never heard of UTOPIA requiring any residential subscriber to pay $3000.00 for a hookup. So at most a monthly assessment would come to $24 a month over a 20 year period and with the ISPs(God Bless them) dropping there price by $24, it seems like a wash to me. And if I get some extra $$ in my pocket and just pay off the assessment I am sitting nicely with a low high speed option every month. Not to mention my house will be worth more than a house without fiber. There are so many indirect benefits to having fiber in a city. Wow! Sounds like a great deal to me. So if you just say $3000.00 for a hookup and can't comprehend what really will happen with all of this and can't see the future vision of communication it sure does sounds bleak and dark. I am just glad a solution like this is out here.

  • Alpine CITY
    June 18, 2009 10:37 a.m.

    I wish we had Utopia in Alpine. I live in city limits and I can't get DSL through Qwest. I can't get Comcast through cable (my neighbors 5 houses down the street can get it????). NEITHER of them have coverage at my house which was built 5 years ago. The neighborhood has been established for 7-10 years.

    Freakin ridiculous!!!!

    So I have to accepted Digis "wireless broadband" as the only option. They sell you "up to 7mbps" for 34.95 a month. True it is better than dialup but the average download speed is less than 1.5Mbps although I have the 7Mbps service. They are deceptive at best.

    ALPINE CITY ought to be ashamed they did not get better internet options for ALL their citizens.

    Utopia even with its difficulty, at least provides what I would call the ultimate internet when it finally gets done.

    Now ALPINE CITY provides ultimate frustration.

  • Pull the plug
    June 18, 2009 10:12 a.m.

    Does this hole just keep getting deeper and deeper?

    The infrastructure is almost obsolete and they still can't make it work.

    Time to pull the plug and let Qwest and Comcast take the risks.

    Are you listening Mayor?

  • To the defenders...
    June 18, 2009 10:10 a.m.

    To the UTOPIA apologists (including Speed is Everything):

    Imagine that your smooth-talking buddy told you he'd buy you a new $50,000 car and completely pay for it- no cost to you. All you had to do was co-sign the loan. Then it takes you way longer than expected to get the car, the car has all kinds of mechanical problems at first and is missing lots of parts, it ends up costing three times as much as anticipated, your buddy skips town, and you're on the hook for something you only bought because you thought you'd never have to pay for it, and actually can't pay for it without cutting tons of stuff from your normal budget.
    Yes, Speed is Everything, you still are left with a nice car. But would you really still be trumpeting what a great deal you got??? Can we get a reality check???

  • Speed is only something
    June 18, 2009 10:08 a.m.

    Most people CAN do everything they want using Comcast or Qwest. Comcast offers speeds up to 50mb/sec. in other systems and will do so in Utah when needed.

    There are very few people that need faster speeds than Comcast offers.

    There is no question that competition is good for all users, but that competition has to be a viable business venture to provide that benefit.

  • My tax dollars
    June 18, 2009 10:03 a.m.

    At least it's not a guarantee that I'll be paying taxes for UTOPIA for years to come. If they hadn't refinanced, we'd all be paying for a long time because there's no way UTOPIA would have made it. As it is now, it's a risk and we'll pay some, but it sounds like UTOPIA is doing better than ever before -- 30% of eligible customers. That's our one hope to get off these pledges. Better a few years than 30 for something that really is going to be needed.

  • John C
    June 18, 2009 9:47 a.m.

    Speed is everything: only for some, mostly the nerds.
    Technology changes daily, most folks would never need or use fiber optics.
    I don't see where putting those cities future revenues for some thirty years will benefit the naysayers, could you spell that out for us folks that can add and subtract?
    There was already plenty of competion in the market place,whose rates were already lower than when UTOPIA entered that market, simple economics is how people buys thing, just ask Provo.
    As long as someone else is paying for it, it was a good thing, now the sign up cost 3,000 dollars just to sign up, it has become an albatross.

  • Speed is everything
    June 18, 2009 9:20 a.m.

    The simple fact is you CAN NOT DO EVERY THING YOU WANT USING COMCAST OR QWEST. You need a fiber connection "it is the future" and you will be left behind if you do not have. Besides "County Fiber Man" If it was not for UTOPIA you would be paying higher rates for service. UTOPIA has helped every citizen in the northern Wasatch Front by creating competition. Not only have UTOPIA customers benefited so have all of the UTOPIA haters or Nay sayers.

  • County fiber man
    June 18, 2009 8:54 a.m.

    I've had Qwest fiber-to-the-node fast Internet (up to 20MB) for more than a year and don't need Utopia and glad I don't live in a Utopia city...cuz it ain't UTOPIA.

    To A_Chinese_American at 7:27: Charles Duell, Commissioner of the U.S. Patent office in 1899 purportedly said that, "Everything that can be invented has been invented." Who knows what is being worked on...Fiber-To-The-Home (FTTH) is just one tool in the toolbox and is not the "final resolution". However, Service delivery works most efficiently under American competition and not a government monopoly...as one can plainly read in the article.

  • A_Chinese_American
    June 18, 2009 7:27 a.m.

    Go UTOPIA! People don't be panic, Fiber-To-The-Home is the final resolution for your home telecommunication and entertaining needs. Look at Japan, South Korean and Sweden, we are behind already! United States have to catch up with that tech. UTOPIA is good for Utah's current development and the future of industries. I am an Fiber-optic Engineer for over 20 years, I can tell you UTOPIA is good. Many years later, people will say they are grateful to have UTOPIA. Period.

  • Surprise
    June 18, 2009 7:09 a.m.

    What a surprise. When this was first proposed a few years ago it didn't smell right. Subscribers are now going to be paying twice for the service, once in their monthly bill and a second time for an ill concieved financing mess. Just one of the reasons we moved out of Murray, local government with visions of greatness at the expense of its citizens.

  • John C
    June 18, 2009 6:53 a.m.

    Surprise!Surprise!Surprise!..Gomer Pile
    The numbers are skewered in my opinion, 30% take rate...HA! even in cities with much better service and availability it only hovers around 18-22%
    Not enough lipstick for this one, it will be a replay of iProvo,which cost the saps in provo a lot of money to try and compete with the private sector.
    UTOPIA as defined by webster..enjoying perfection.
    This thing has been an Albatross from the get go, poor planning, undintended delays,many obstacles not planned on, to name a few.
    My city of Murray will pay an estimated two million a year for the next 30 years or so for this so called effecency hi tech service, way to go mayor.
    All of the council members except Pat Griffiths voted for this money pit.
    Thank you Ms. Griffiths for having the foresight to vote against UTOPIA.

  • From BC
    June 18, 2009 6:20 a.m.

    Yeah, I was interested until I learned in Brigham there would be a $3000 fee to get connected! That is outrageous, my highspeed Comcast broadband works even better now. No way in H I am paying 3K for utopia.

  • Responsibility
    June 18, 2009 5:52 a.m.

    So who is responsible for all the sketchy financing plans? Why didn't they just get a fixed rate like I did on my home loan? It's almost like they took some weird interest only one year ARM and then did some crazy "swap" for it.

    And those sales tax numbers for the pledges don't add up to over $100+ million. Are those numbers only what has been pledged annually? Could WVC owe 3.5 million every year for this?

    Yick. Yuck. Ouch.