Stacy Briggs Should Go Back To Nashville - And Response

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

I read the account of the Tennessee Cable Telecommunications Association's presentation to the City Council with a great deal of concern. Stacy Briggs is a lobbyist from Nashville whose organization is funded by Comcast and other cable providers in order to protect the monopoly that we currently experience as cable buying consumers in Greater Chattanooga.

The fact that she has been able to find "expert opinions" and "majority polling" that work against the EPB's plan to bring fiber-optic lines to our homes is not surprising as this is exactly what she's paid to do. As citizens, I believe it is in our best interest to keep lobbyists out of our local political landscape and focus on the core needs of our community.

The power board has laid out a logical plan which will increase the reliability of our power system, bring faster data to our homes, and offer competition in what is now a cable-only landscape. Furthermore, the EPB will bring these services to all of our citizens and not just those neighborhoods that will be profitable (Ask our neighbors in rural parts of the north part of the county how well Big Cable serves them).

Fiber to the Home just makes sense. It will make Chattanooga more attractive to technology workers and hi-tech companies as well as to offer an equalizing force of education by bringing information information and knowledge to all citizens at a fair price. Please join me in requesting that Ms. Briggs and the TCTA return to Nashville and let us handle our own affairs.

Josh McManus
Chattanooga Citizen
joshmcmanus@mac.com

* * *

I agree with what Josh has stated. I also believe that it is a shame that I cannot even get local HD programming on my DirecTV satellite because supposedly Comcast owns the HD rights to the local channels. Did the city sell this to them also?

Ever wonder how these companies pay these lobbyists? Maybe that is why Comcast wants to continuously raise our rates every time we blink.

Maybe if the people of our city and Hamilton County ever wake up and clean house in our County Commission and City Council we can one day get true competition in our area that will help control pricing. What people need is choice. Maybe people should try and imagine true competition where you can choose from Comcast, ATT, EPB, DirecTV, or Dish network. Most people want that - except for Comcast, their lobbyists, and the people whose pockets they line.

Patrick McBride
East Ridge


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