Tuesday 11 June 2013

CRTC Questions Bell's Deferral Account Plans

Apparently I was not the only one that had issues with the Bell Deferral Account quarterly report for 15 Apr 13. The CRTC made a redacted version public by on 22 Apr 13. I discussed the report in this blog entry.

The CRTC wrote a letter to Bell on 05 Jun 13 questioning whether or not the company could meet the proposed August 2014 target date to have the project finished. They are particularly concerned that no new sites are scheduled for activation in 2013 as part of the Deferral Account program.

They raised questions about the amount of backhaul construction yet to be completed and the number of communities that need site acquisition negotiations to start or be finalized.

As the CRTC states in the letter: “In the Commission’s view, the rollout plan is significantly back-end loaded, jeopardizing the timely rollout of service to consumers” and also “Ultimately, it is the Canadians who live in those [Deferral Account] communities who will be impacted.”

The bottom line in the letter is “… the Commission directs the Bell companies to identify, by 17 June 2013, a) the major risks associated with its rollout plan, and b) its mitigation strategies to address each risk such as, for example, accelerating the rollout to specific communities.”

The full letter can be read on this CRTC site.

In a related matter, as reported in this blog entry, there are Deferral Account site surveys being conducted throughout the District. The latest reports indicated activity in the Nils Bay region of the Goulais Deferral Account area and the Sterling Bay region of St, Joseph Island Deferral Account area.  

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