Archive of the Broadband Stimulus Category

N.H. smart grid fund recipient squares off against bankrupt Fairpoint

Receiving nearly $16 million in smart grid stimulus funding was certainly a boon to the New Hampshire Electric Cooperative, as it was to the other 99 recipients, but the funding had a different meaning for this New Hampshire-based utility. It is owed $400,000 from Fairpoint Communications, the area’s main telco, which is busy wading through bankruptcy. more

DOE doles out smart grid stimulus funding

To the applause of many key stakeholders, the Department of Energy will today unveil the recipients of $3.4 billion in stimulus grants for 100 smart grid projects. The grants will range from $400,000 to $200 million to fund 25 large and 75 small utility and state projects across 49 states. The money is meant to enable a complete grid overhaul, as well as create tens of thousands of jobs. more

Mass. blesses 3 stimulus projects, none private

The Massachussetts governor’s office has endorsed three recipients to receive federal broadband stimulus funds. Though some of those efforts involve private partners, none of the three applications were filed by private companies. more

Are RLECs giving up on broadband stimulus?

Tier-two and tier-three carriers may be giving up on the federal broadband stimulus program, according to one broadband equipment vendor CEO.

Several such carriers, such as CenturyLink (NYSE:CTL) and Windstream (NYSE:WIN), did not apply for stimulus funds due to the requirements attached, such as network neutrality and data disclosure. (Frontier Communications applied, but only in one state.) But some industry observers expected those carriers to try applying in later rounds once changes in the qualification process were made. Windstream, for example, said last month that it was working to convince federal administrators to change those rules.

However, as federal agencies have held their ground on net neutrality and other issues lately, carriers may have lost confidence in their prospects for changing policy.

“Some of those [tier-two and tier-three] carriers have no intent [to apply] at this point in time; they may not qualify for whatever reason,” said Tom Stanton, CEO of Adtran (NASDAQ:ADTN), during the equipment vendor’s earnings call today. “Those carriers that we’re in discussions with are talking about how they’re going to move forward with broadband expansion outside of the stimulus plan.”

Stanton’s comments came in response to a question about whether RLECs that had previously put broadband spending on hold while they evaluated their stimulus prospects might now increase spending. “The answer is yes,” Stanton said. “Some of those players went on a diet going into this year, and definitely in the first half of this year, trying to see how they would position themselves for broadband spend.”

UPDATE: A spokesperson for Windstream today said the company has not ruled out applying in round two: “It depends on how the rules are structured for the second round. We are waiting to participate in the agencies’ upcoming RFI process (request for information).”

UPDATE 10/15: Geoff Burke at Calix responded this way:

About 40% 0f U.S. tier 2 and 3 service providers are already our customers. To date, we’ve seen about a quarter of our U.S. customers apply for Stimulus funds in round one. Those who chose not to apply fall into four categories:
1) Those who did not qualify based on the definitions set forth in the NOFA
2) Those who feared the strings attached to the funds
3) Those who couldn’t wait for competitive reasons
4) Those who are already executing on all cylinders and saw the Stimulus as a distraction

For the first two groups, many are still waiting on the fence to see how dramatically the rules change in the next NOFA ľ this includes some very large ILECs. For the service providers in the third and fourth groups, they continue to charge ahead with broadband expansion and upgrade plans, and in some cases have hastened their expansion and upgrade plans to counteract potential Stimulus-funded incursions into their service territories.

Comcast CEO named among five most ‘overpaid’

Brian RobertsComcast’s (NASDAQ:CMCSA) Brian Roberts has been named one of the top five most overpaid CEOs by the Corporate Library, a corporate governance research and analysis firm.

Roberts’ total 2008 compensation of more

Some broadband projects self-fund without stimulus

As broadband stimulus applicants vie for federal funding, plenty of government entities across the country are moving ahead with public/private partnerships that extend broadband without the need for grant money from Uncle Sam. more

Broadband stimulus projects won’t be blocked easily by incumbents

Incumbent service providers will have a hard time trying to block broadband stimulus projects in their territories. That’s according to Craig Settles, a consultant and founder of, who also helps stimulus applicants apply for funding. more

Duke Energy taps Convergys for smart grid billing

One of the biggest drivers for smart grid deployments has been the cost savings it can bring both utilities and their customers, butáthis requires new methods of data management, new customer options andáa new method of billing. To address this need, third largest US electric company and smart grid pioneer Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK) today added Convergys (NYSE: CVG) to its growing list of partners. Convergys will provide Duke with smart grid billing and customer management. more

Broadband stimulus applicants abound; who needs big carriers?

Government Technology raises an interesting question about the broadband stimulus initiative: Should anyone care if big broadband providers don’t like the rules? more

OpenRange taps WiChorus for WiMax core

After announcing its first customer last week, start-up 4G core vendor WiChorusátoday piled on a second. While smaller than Clearwire (NASDAQ:CLWR), Open Range Communications is one of the largest operators focusing strictly onárural developments, targeting 546 communities in 17 states. more


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