Often we report with great fervor the arrival of Google Fiber to new cities across America. It’s an exciting prospect to have a new service come into your town, and from Google to boot. But one of the things that often gets overlooked through the haze of amazement and awe is the cost of Google Fiber to the taxpayers of the communities to which they are expanding. This is not to say that paying taxes on expanding or building an infrastructure within your community is a bad thing, it’s just not a thought consumers have when they’re pining for faster internet speeds.
The Triangle Business Journal is reporting that Google Fiber will cost the taxpayers of Cary, North Carolina upwards of $300K to build out, and that’s just a four month cost. Why are the taxpayers footing the bill for Google’s Fiber expansion? Well, the towns they decide to go into have a responsibility to plan and permit the areas where Google wants to lay their infrastructure and that costs money and man hours. The permitting phase of the project is said to be $150,000 over that four month period and thats just obtaining permits. To add to Cary’s burden, the town isn’t equipped to handle the amount of requests that Google will be throwing at it, meaning overtime hours and contracting companies to help with the load may come into play.
“Future expenses could be over $1 million,” the report reads. “Because the Town does not have experience with such a high volume of installation in so short a period, it is not clear whether the projected expenses for the remainder of this fiscal year are indicative of the expenses for future years.”
“At that rate, and assuming a completed system would consist of approximately 600 miles of fiber, the permitting phase would take approximately four months,” the staff report reads, adding that the town is not staffed to handle that kind of increase.
“Since we do not have staff availability for the anticipated significant volume of construction inspection, the Town received an estimate from one of our consultants for these services,” the report reads.
The bottom line is that Google Fiber is going to be an investment on both the part of Google and the towns they choose to go into. Cary, North Carolina seems to be trying to cope with the sudden realization of those costs and will hopefully find a way to make it all work without too much impact to taxpayers. Most often we report Google Fiber is coming to your town next but the story gets left there and we move on to the next town. But there are real dollars being spent on these Google Fiber projects and it’s important that each town’s residents know that while they’re getting state of the art Fiber in their city, there is also a price to pay in taxes.Source: Triangle Business Journal