Earlier today, New Hampshire reversed it’s “opt-out” decisionand decided to climb aboard the train of States opting in to FirstNet.
Florida, not willing to be one of the last holdouts, announced that they too will opt in.
That leaves California.
AT&T managed to run the table on this whole fiasco. Through deception, fraud, outright lies and lobbying, they guaranteed themselves a fat check from the government for at least the next twenty five years.
Same as it ever was.
Giving free bandwidth and $6.5 Billion dollars over five years to AT&T is about as intelligent as asking a redhead if she’s gaining weight, or just pregnant.
Catching up on some posts I’ve neglected over the past week, I ran into a story today from Urgent Communications. They cite that Verizon decided not to bid on the California opt-out because FirstNet is rigging the game with onerous conditions.
Verizon issued a statement say i. Part that “Technical and financial requirements dictated by FirstNet’s draft spectrum management lease agreement (SMLA) saddled the state of California—through no fault of its own—with onerous and vaguely defined mandates in its RFP that impacted our ability to create a response we believe best served public safety and Verizon.”
That’s a pretty lofty charge. One might think that a quasi-government agency rigging the game of contracting in favor of a single, highly connected selected vendor and big political contributor would be front page news.
Since the story came out…crickets.
FirstNet is mandating that California use the AT&T network set up no matter WHO they choose as an alternate.
Then, there is the dam burst of information over from the digging folks over at Vermont Digger.
A leak of documents connected to FirstNet was alleged, and AT&T jumped on the “proprietary information” bandwagon,
VTDigger reported that FirstNet opponent and government accountability proponent Stephen Whitaker tried to hand a copy of two consultants’ review
Yikes, kids. If one hears hoofbeats, don’t expect a train…unless that train has Wikileaks onboard.
Over the last couple of weeks, there have been a few big developments on the FirstNet issue.
Colorado decided to take the initiative and step back to examine the Opt-Out process. This is one of those big developments for a rural state (Like Maine) that should signal all the other states there is something to look at, other than AT&T’s bloated unsupported vague promises.
The other shocker to me was the wake-up. A rural state like New Hampshire stepping back is an indicator. based on that logic, I can understand Colorado stepping back for a few minutes to see what what what.
This article over at RRmediaThis article over at RRmedia shows the issue behind the scenes. “Who Do You Trust?” is a good question, basing itself on the un-promise of AT&T.
A spicy tidbit from the article follows.
“And we now find that AT&T has a clearly undefined path regarding incorporation of the D block spectrum. That band of spectrum — the very 10 megahertz that was required to ensure the future of American civilization — may or may not be implemented. To date, AT&T has advised that 700 MHz band 14 — the D block spectrum — will be added to new sites at some unknown point and will be added to existing sites as coverage or capacity is needed.”
Somehow, I’m reminded of that old street hustle/con called Three Card Monte.
If you chose either one of the wrong cards, you lose. The only way to win is to be in on the scam, and it appears to me that AT&T is rigging the game in thier favor by picking themselves as end user contractors.
Doubt it? Another good dig over at RRmedia shows them pricing the phones they intend to sell.
You might not know the dealer and the guy suckering you in on the bet are working together, but they are. Their goal is to suck the last living dollar out of your pocket, and make you feel good about them doing it.
She then outlines why New Hampshire is leading the nation among potential “opt-out” states. Let me explain again that Maine was an early opt-in state, apparently ignoring the issues that have surfaced in New Hampshire. Of course, one of the people involved with advising Gov. LePage left public service, after more than a decade, to join AT&T right after that decision was made. Oh, AT&T is the national contractor for FirstNet.
Unlike the state of Maine, Ms. Rajala does not seem to be buying whatever AT&T/FirstNet is selling, and it’s worth noting that the major issue in NH, just like in Maine, is service to northern rural areas.
More info here
Was traveling last week, but this tidy tasty tidbit toppled over the transom today.
FirstNet claims to be exempt from FOIA because, well, they say they are.
Not so fast. Stephen Whitaker and David Gram are thinking that might be a bit wrong, and have asked a Federal Judge to issue an expedited ruling. They sought information on comments regarding state opt-out questions, and were told to go peddle fish.
Ah, but the stench of unsold fish now comes before the court, much to the delight of those like myself.
Sometimes, an exemption really isn’t an exemption.
Link to the US House Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, scheduled for 10:40 am Wednesday Nov 1st