BREAKING: Midvale Approves Rebonding, Payson Rejects It

I attended the Midvale city council meeting tonight and the city council unanimously approved the new bonds for UTOPIA by a 5-0 vote, much to the dismay of many of those in attendance. I know I was somewhat ambiguous about the new bonds but after the presentation by Kirk Sudwicks (?), I knew they had put together a solid plan with high odds of success. The city council realized it too and I could tell they'd done their homework when they later explained their votes. Kudos for them to being willing to do what they thought was right in the face of so much hostility (and a fair number of folks speaking out of order). 

Payson, meanwhile, rejected the new bonds by a 4-1 vote. This came as a surprise as it was expected as recently as last week that they would pass the new bonds. Word on the street is that the Utah Taxpayers Association launched a blitz on their city council to talk them out of it. Payson residents, there's still time to talk to the council and have them reconsider the motion. I know that once I get a chance, I'll be opening a dialog with each of them to find out why they rejected it.

I haven't seen anything on the five other cities voting on the bond issue tonight, but I'll be sure to post more as it hits the newswire tomorrow. 

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6 Responses to BREAKING: Midvale Approves Rebonding, Payson Rejects It

  1. travis says:

    After a lengthy comment period and city council discussion, West Valley City voted 4-3 in favor of refinancing. Representatives from Qwest, Comcast and Utah Taxpayers were all there to suggest WVC vote against refinancing. I believe the Comcast representative was trying to make the case that adequate telco competition already exists without UTOPIA. In Q and A with the city council, however, he was asked whether Comcast would have any interest in providing services on UTOPIA in the northern or southern cities where Comcast has no infrastructure. Surprisingly, the representative said these areas are already served by local operators, and there is an implicit agreement among cable system operators not to compete in each others’ territories. I don’t know if this was picked up on by the city council members, but I felt it undermined his argument that the marketplace already ensures adequate competition!

  2. luminous says:

    ok so how does this work if some of the city’s approve of the rebonding but some don’t?

  3. Jesse says:

    Travis: Such candor from Comcast is surprising. Everyone knows that the cable and phone companies have a kind of gentleman’s agreement not to enter each other’s territories, but saying it out in the open is unheard of. I hope WVC records their meetings because playing that back for the FCC would raise a lot of eyebrows.

    luminous: If only some cities approve the new bonds, they may have to bond for less money or otherwise rework the bond structure.

  4. FGF says:

    Regarding the West Valley City hearings: it seems to me Comcast admitted collusion?

  5. Jesse says:

    FGF: Don’t think I won’t be bringing that up tomorrow at Layton’s city council meeting. Everyone needs to know that their cake is a lie.

  6. Luke says:

    I posted my comments from the Orem meeting on my blog.

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