Correcting Misinformation about the Fiber Optics Network Project

 

Delburne your success logo - transparent background.png       
VILLAGE OF DELBURNE
P.O. Box 341, 2111 20th Street
PH: (403) 749-3606
www.delburne.ca
 

 

July 10, 2020

CORRECTING MISINFORMATION ABOUT THE FIBER OPTICS NETWORK PROJECT

At the Village of Delburne, honesty and transparency are of the utmost importance. We strive to be the first and main source of information to people with questions and concerns. We are imploring the community to contact us directly with any inquiries. We have an open door policy and we will make time to address any concerns. We also ask that you trust the information that we provide to you as we pride ourselves on our authenticity.

We have been informed that there are many rumours being spread around the community regarding the Fiber Optics Network project. We have been accused of being dishonest when answering questions about financing the project. Please know that we have not provided any false information to those who have inquired about the financial aspect of the fiber optics network.  We would like to address these accusations and clear up any misinformation.

How is the fiber optics network project being funded?                            

The total cost of the fiber optic network is estimated to be $1,150,000. The municipality estimates the following grants and contributions will be applied to the project:

Capital Reserves
$84,578
Provincial Grants
$270,422
Debenture(s)                                                                                           
____$795,000
Total Cost                                                                                                   
$1,150,000

In order to complete the project it will be necessary to borrow $795,000.  A borrowing bylaw was proposed which went to a public hearing on July 9, 2020. Afterwards Council passed the second and the third and final reading of the Borrowing Bylaw #1165/2020.  

Some residents have been concerned about Section 4 of the Borrowing Bylaw which states that “The Municipality shall levy and raise in each year municipal taxes sufficient to pay the indebtedness”.  Legislatively, this clause must be in the bylaw. A municipality is responsible to pay their debt however the plan is to not use Section 4 to pay for the fiber optics network.

We will be applying for Municipal Sustainability Initiative (MSI) Capital funding to pay for the debenture over 5 years.  The Provincial Government has indicated that we will have MSI Capital for another 10 years. By making the application to MSI Capital, a portion of the grant allotment would be used to offset the principle and interest payments.  This method would mean it won’t impact property taxes.  Using this capital grant funding isn’t going to have an effect on future capital projects as we are ahead of schedule on our Infrastructure Master Plan. We’ve been proactive and very successful in applying for competitive based grants which has allowed us to fund 4 projects on our capital plan. 

Another question we have been asked is, “Why isn’t it an option to have fiber optic internet service with Telus or Shaw?”

The fiber optic network is a joint project with Red Deer County who put out a Request for Proposal (RFP) in April. Telus and Shaw did not put in a bid to do the project. The RFP was awarded to a company named Valo Networks Ltd. It was Valo Networks’ decision to award Tether Communications with a contract to be the exclusive service provider on the fiber optic network for 5 years.

Tether-Delburne2020-May2020-FBPost-03.png

You are under no obligation to sign up for internet service through Tether Communications, however we strongly encourage that you give consent to Tether Communications to install fiber optic cables through your property to the outside of your house. Right now, running the cables to your house is of no personal cost to you and it would be planning for the future. In a few years down the road should you decide to have fiber optic cables installed, you will be responsible to pay for the fiber optic cables and the installation.

To give consent to Tether Communications, visit: https://tetheralberta.com/access/

Should you wish to sign up for internet service, visit: https://tetheralberta.com/signup/

Tether can also be reached by phone 1-844-905-0690 to answer access and service plan questions.

If you have any questions or concerns about the fiber optics network project or any other topic relating to the municipality, please visit us at the Delburne Municipal Office – 2111 20th St., phone 403-749-3606, or email village(at)delburne.ca.  We would be happy to chat with you.

                                                                                                    -30-                                    

Karen Fegan, CLGM, CT
Chief Administrative Officer
Village of Delburne
Ph: 403-749-3606
Email: Karen.fegan(at)delburne.ca