The Newberry Springs Community Alliance, producer of the Blotter,
has had on-going communication with Rachelle Chong, of the Law Offices of Rachelle Chong
located in San Francisco. Chong is Outside Counsel for the California
Emerging Technology Fund ("CETF"); the good guys supportive of broadband for Newberry Springs.
In an e-mail to us, Rachelle Chong responded to an earlier communication
from our coeditor, Ted Stimpfel. Because her e-mail sums up the current status on
broadband, we are sharing portions it.
For about a year the Community Alliance has been voicing support
for the Barstow-Las Vegas fiberoptic proposal. Most of Chong's comments are not
new information for those who have been following this matter; yet, her attached
documents (linked above) reveal for the first time, the CPUC's proposed decision.
While Newberry Springs is not mentioned anywhere in the proposed
decision, Newberry's letter writing campaign appears to have played an influential part
in the Memorandum of Understanding and the Joint Parties Settlement Agreement
that favor the ruralization of broadband. These documents are imbedded as a major part
of the CPUC decision; and adherence to them by Frontier Communications will be supervised by
Under the terms of the agreements, there are avenues now open for
Newberry Springs to acquire broadband; and they all foster the adoption of a federal
program for a reduced fee for low income qualifiers.
The question of when, and which one of the doors may open to
Newberry Springs, becomes a matter of Frontier's priorities, scheduling, and
assistive funding which is dependent upon Washington. Newberry could be
acquiring broadband within the next 3 to 5 years. Changes in the political
atmosphere in Washington over broadband support could delay this timing.
Meanwhile, the Community Alliance has been following the planned
birth of a Barstow-Las Vegas fiberoptic route. While that project is still
in the conceptive womb stage, it could be birthing next year. At best, the main
trunk line will run through the center of Newberry Springs or along the I-15 with a
branch line into Newberry. From the end of that branch, as Chong above
states, a retail Internet Service Provider (ISP) would then provide the final
High speed Internet connectively is exceptionally important for
Newberry's future and those who took the time to write the CPUC on the matter have
played a very important role.
The Newberry Springs Chamber of Commerce,
Newberry Springs-Harvard Property Owners Association, Newberry Springs
Service Association (Family Center), and the Newberry Community Services District
were all important participants supporting the letter campaign.