Yukon North Of Ordinary

News archive for December 23, 2013

Northwestel concerned about parts of CRTC decision

Northwestel Inc. president and CEO Paul Flaherty says he is pleased the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) is supportive of its overall modernization plan, despite Northwestel being directed to submit a revised version.

By Stephanie Waddell on December 23, 2013 at 4:01 pm

Northwestel Inc. president and CEO Paul Flaherty says he is pleased the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) is supportive of its overall modernization plan, despite Northwestel being directed to submit a revised version.

The CRTC released the decision last Wednesday. There was general support for the plan, which will see Northwestel spend $233 million to upgrade its infrastructure over five years.

However, it did call on Northwestel to make some priority changes so transport upgrades are at the top of its to-do list in the plan.

The revised plan must be submitted to the CRTC by March 31, 2014.

While he was pleased to see the overall support for the plan, Flaherty noted, the company has some concerns with the requirement to submit its current rate structure for approval.

Flaherty pointed out if the company is forced to bring down its Internet pricing so that it only covers the cost of providing the service, that leaves no room for funds to be put toward future upgrades to its infrastructure.

The decision also has revised wholesale rates so that Northwestel is “reasonably compensated for its costs and is encouraged to further invest in its fibre networks,” and that’s a positive for the company, Flaherty said.

He noted that the decision means Northwestel could end up going ahead with its plans for improvements to Dawson City’s fibre network that it had decided wouldn’t be done.

Flaherty said work will have to be done to plan for the network, which means it will likely be 2015 before work is done in Dawson.

The CRTC is also planning to launch an inquiry process into satellite Internet service in the new year.

Flaherty said Northwestel will be part of that process, and will be closely watching to see how it unfolds.

The company recognizes the important role it has in the northern economy, he added, and it’s committed to the community it serves.

Northwestel is continuing to meet its commitments in providing telecommunications services across the North, Flaherty added.

CommentsAdd a comment

marcia

Dec 24, 2013 at 2:39 am

“Flaherty pointed out if the company is forced to bring down its Internet pricing so that it only covers the cost of providing the service, that leaves no room for funds to be put toward future upgrades to its infrastructure”
uuum

I’m glad CRTC has been on you lately.  I hope another provider comes up here soon and everyone changes to that provider.

Just Say'in

Dec 26, 2013 at 8:05 pm

Lets remember whose infrastructure it is that these freeloaders will be using. Also remember who hires and pays very well hundreds of Yukoners and spends Millions in this community. Of course the freeloaders only want the business in the larger northern communities and want to pay for nothing. They should just be able to compete for free.

Groucho d'North

Dec 27, 2013 at 5:57 pm

I wonder if NWTel still gets $20 million each year to invest in said infrastructure? Because when they did get this benefit, they somehow forgot to invest it into their operational equipment, but rather lined shareholder pockets with it.

I doubt all the cards are on the table for NWTel customers to see.

Wundering

Dec 28, 2013 at 9:15 am

“Lets remember whose infrastructure it is that these freeloaders will be using.”

Most of this infrastructure wouldn’t have been built if not subsidized by the taxpayer.

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