Under The Radar - PSC Buffalo Fios Meetings this Week


By Francis White 

When I came into the office today and tried to turn on my computer and connect to the internet, I got a message on the screen that read “You are not connected to the internet and here’s why sucka; Ya’ll gotta pay your juice bill. I got the pimp juice and it comes in gas, electric, solar, wind, cable, and internet flavors.”

Utility Pimpin sent me text around the same time, it said, “how did you like that trick I pulled on ya’ll at the PUSH Buffalo office today sucka? Lol! When too many people join the band width, things start moving slow, lol. Ya’ll broke muthas in Buffalo NY ain’t getting no other options for high speed internet access either, so stop trying to lobby my companies. A lot of you all are rockin I pads and Mac Books. Why can’t ya’ll just go down to a coffee shop and use their internet?”

So if you didn’t know already, Buffalo is in need of Fios. This is the fiber optic system developed and primarily controlled by Verizon. It could be that other big high speed internet option in the area we need besides the service offered by Time Warner. Time Warner’s system uses their cable lines which they primarily control. Why should Buffalo and PUSH Buffalo even care about internet access, because, it is quite difficult, if possible at all to get anything done in this day and age without reliable access to the net. Your personal livelihood, your business, or your organization could suffer greatly without reliable internet access. Everyday business and life transactions that are needed for your survival are being conducted more and more over the internet. Job applications, employee timesheets, bus schedules, transportation bookings, various media/communications, and financial transactions, just to name a few are some of the things that are almost exclusively done online for many organizations and businesses.

We see it often, almost every day when folks from the neighborhood come into the community center downstairs from our offices every weekday afternoon. At a certain time the internet starts to run slow as more people hop on an already limited bandwidth. 

You can take action this Wednesday August 5th. Be there at one of the hearings to make your voice heard. There’s one at 2:00 PM and another at 6:00 PM at the Buffalo Central Library, 1 Lafayette Square, Buffalo. For more information or to testify contact CEJ (Coalition for Economic Justice) at 716-892-5877 or andy@cejbuffalo.org.

The Public Service Commission (PSC), the group charged with regulating utility companies in the state of New York will be in town again. This time for a special session to hear why Fios is needed by people in Buffalo especially those living in or at near poverty, it’s also needed by those organizations/businesses operating in Buffalo who could use an alternative to Time Warner’s high speed internet monopoly to stay viable and competitive.