Friday, August 13, 2010

Australia - Tasmania considering making a connection to the fibre NBN as mandatory

[abc] The State Government is hoping to make an announcement soon about whether to make connecting to the National Broadband Network mandatory for Tasmanians, if Federal Labor is re-elected.

The Premier David Bartlett believes the best strategy is to hook up all Tasmanian homes and businesses to the NBN, and then let people opt out if they do not want to be connected.

But another option is to not give Tasmanians a choice, and make connecting to the NBN mandatory.

He expects to make a decision within weeks.

"I don't want to pre-empt any other announcements but we are looking very closely at this matter," Mr Bartlett said.

Doug Campbell of NBN Tas has reminded Tasmanians they can be connected to the broadband network free of charge as part of the current rollout.

He says if they decide later to join up, they will have to pay.

"If the crews leave town and we've got to bring them back in because somebody else says, 'I'd like a drop [cable connection]', or a group of people do, then we've got to go to some extra expense to build those, and we will be charging the retail service providers for those additional drops.

"It probably would be in the order of $300 per call," he said.

Mandatory NBN a possibility for Tasmanians

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