Stockbridge to build fiber optics system without tax money - CBS46 News

Stockbridge to build fiber optics system without tax money

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STOCKBRIDGE, GA (CBS46) -

Stockbridge City Council voted 5-0 to allow a Community Broadband out of Savannah to come in and build a new internet broadband system at no cost to taxpayers.

It's a $15 million investment for the company. The hope is that people will buy the service when it's available.

The new fiber optics system here will mean access to the some of the fastest internet in the state.

Faster internet and more bandwidth is something local schools desperately need.

Right now schools have to take turns using the internet because there's not enough bandwidth.

Businesses will also benefit from the infrastructure investment by being in a position to grow.

Mayor Mark Alarcon told CBS Atlanta News the project is fully funded by Community Broadband.

He said it's worth giving them access to the city's right of ways at no cost.

"If you consider [Community Broadband] is giving away $15 million and then getting a generation or two of successfully educated children, and business development, I'll give it away any day," said Alarcon.

City Council unanimously approved the deal, which is slated to bring 38 new jobs.

Charles Smith with the Henry County Development Board told CBS Atlanta News the county also stands to gain from the deal.

"If Stockbridge brings it in, it's a 260-mile radius, the county will benefit from it as well," said Smith.

Once the project is completed, Stockbridge will have the largest broadband system in the state second only to Atlanta.

Allen Davis with Community Broadband told CBS Atlanta News that's what makes this multimillion-dollar investment a smart one.

"With demand as high as it is, knowing that over an extended period of time that demand is going to continue to grow, it created an opportunity to generate some revenue to make it sustainable," said Davis.

Davis said work on the project will begin next week.

The system is slated to be up and running in September 2014.

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