On the docket is this interesting item:
5. NEW BUSINESS
5ar - RESOLUTION AWARDING A CONTRACT THROUGH COMPETITIVE CONTRACTING TO E-PATH COMMUNICATIONS, INC., 5110 EISENHOWER BOULEVARD, SUITE 300, TAMPA, FL 33634 FOR THE FURNISHING AND DELIVERY OF WIRELESS FIDELITY “WIFI” AND WIRELESS 4.9 GHZ INTERNET SERVICES FOR THE CITY OF TRENTON. (In an amount not to exceed $250,000)
Now if memory serves, when this was brought up back in November the administration said that there would be no cost to the city to build this system. Trenton would just pay for the services it used.
In fact, in an article in the Trentonian at the time, Mayor Douglas Palmer was quoted as saying,
“In addition, E-Path will build, at no cost to the city, a separate, secure, dedicated network, that the city will use for police, fire and emergency services, communications and all other city services.”So, has E-Path miraculously been able to install test and make operational its wi-fi system in three months time? We don’t think so.
If the system is not available to us, why are we authorizing a contract for services with them unless that capital is needed to help fund the installation? And if that’s the case, then the council and the people of Trenton were lied to yet again by Douglas H. Palmer.
Let’s face it, we knew all along the only way this young company from Florida was going to be able to launch this project was with the promise of a contract for services from the city, and probably with similar contracts from the county and state to follow suit.
What happens if we don’t approve this contract? Does E-Path lose its funding for the project and the whole thing just go away…”at no cost to the city?”
What happens if we do approve this contract? Will we start making payments to E-Path prior to service being provided? What happens in the likelihood they never get the system built? Will we then have incurred a “cost to the city?”
You know, Verizon is working hard to get areas of the city wired for its highly touted FIOS system. They are taking on the expense of designing and installing the system before they take any money from subscribers to the service.
Why are we being asked to contract with E-Path communications now unless it is to partially underwrite their proposed system? A system, as we’ve pointed out previously, that is most likely doomed to fail.
Once again, we need to ask our council to exercise common sense and fiscal controls by not approving this handout to E-Path Communications.
Build the system, demonstrate that it works, and then come see me about subscribing to it.
Is that too hard to understand?