PBMLP votes Oct. 19 to pursue town controlled Internet network

Here’s a press release from Princeton Broadband MLP:

– New plan assumes a vendor-built network managed by Princeton-

Princeton Broadband Municipal Light Plant (PBMLP) will vote Oct. 19 to pursue installing a high-speed Internet network controlled and managed by the town but built by a qualified vendor/installer. This solution follows successful ventures by many municipalities nationwide now reaping the financial benefits of network control and ownership.

“We looked at different options from several vendors and also one from the state-control MBI initiative,” said Jon Fudeman, PBMLP member. “We all agreed that control and ownership by any outside entity would deny Princeton residents the flexibility to decide who runs their network and oversees its operation. Under our proposed solution, Princeton keeps the revenue generated from all subscription fees, while delivering affordable ultra-fast Internet access with the lowest possible risk.”

The Princeton plan – dubbed “Connecting Princeton” – will require borrowing funds that town officials believe will not increase property taxes. PBMLP anticipates scheduling a special town meeting in 2016 to present its plan in more detail. A two-thirds majority vote is required to pass PBMLP’s recommendation.

The public, as always, is invited to attend the public meeting on Oct. 19, which will be held at Town Hall Annex at 5 pm.

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8 comments

  1. Dan Hodgkins

    The text is confusing – is the vote on the 19th, or at “a special town meeting in 2016” – or are those both the same thing? Or is this just the board voting and the town votes later?

  2. rs

    Side question … we’re renovating the basement now and would like to have the electrician install Cat 6 cable. If all gets passed do we have any idea when we might know how the fiber will be connected to the homes? Will the vendor be working individually with each residence?

      • John Kowaleski

        Randy,
        The Town has not gone out to bid on any vendor services or equipment yet, but there is lots that would be common across vendors and manufacturer’s equipment.

        Common practice is to have the fiber running to your home from the street be connected to a small box, called an ONT, that can be located on the outside or inside of your home depending on type. This ONT, amongst its other functions, converts the signals from light to electricity. These electrical signals can be accessed by RG-45 sockets or the like that would typically be on the ends of your CAT 6 cables. An outdoor ONT would be very much like the typical VZ box that copper phone lines connect to but about 2x as large. Connector plugs would be run inside. A sample of an outdoor box would be: ( http://www.calix.com/images/products/p-series/calix_716GE.png ) An indoor ONT would look an awful lot like a cable/DSL modem/router that is used for LANs in the home and there would be some hardware to connect the fiber on the outside. It might look like: ( http://www.zhone.com/products/ZNID-GE-24xx/ ). It would have RG-45 connectors of the like as well but there are options that include wireless 803.11n or ac. WIreless ONTs are more expensive. Either ONT will need to be connected to AC power optionally through a battery backup unit. The Town has not decided which to use or whether to offer both; costs and inventory control are issues.

        The folks running the fiber to the home and installing an ONT will work with owners to install and put into service the ONT within guidelines. One of those limits is that we expect the fiber lines to any home follow the path of either the power lines or phone lines from the street. Variations from that expectation MIGHT be possible but would involve added expense not planned for or covered by the town, and should be addressed very early in the process. It is not expected that the network builder do extensive work inside your home. Leverett has a nice description of what to expect for installation; Princeton’s implementation will have many of the same features and challenges but Princeton is planning on only providing broadband service: ( http://leverett.ma.us/content/leverett-ftth-homeowner-preparation-information ).

        There are still many details to work out.

        ==== ONT – Optical Network Terminal

        /jk

  3. mark

    I know this has been dragging on forever.
    Is there any time table on when we could see actual internet here?
    The Ayacht internet I have has been brutal for the past year, and since November, the pole has been down. Are they going to fix it?? who knows. They don’t give me an answer.

    Why isn’t DSL available to the whole town???

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