As former Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan once famously said, “everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts.” In a guest opinion in the Feb. 4 Courier, Gene Yagla relied on his own facts to formulate his opinions about Mediacom and the city of Waterloo.
Contrary to Mr. Yagla’s statements, Mediacom has never been granted the exclusive right to provide cable service to Waterloo residents. State and federal law requires cable franchises to be non-exclusive, meaning any company holding a state or local franchise to serve Waterloo is free to build their own cable system.
In 2013, Mediacom chose to convert its local franchise to a state-issued franchise certificate. As a result, the regulation of Mediacom moved from a local function to a state function. When Mr. Yagla accuses Waterloo of disbanding the Cable TV Commission and abdicating its role as overseer of Mediacom, he is simply mistaken about the role the city now plays in regulating local cable companies.
In the past 24 months, Mediacom has invested well over $5 million of its own private capital for major improvements in our Waterloo facility and local network. Homes and businesses in the eight Black Hawk County communities we serve have had access to ultrafast 1-Gig internet speeds for more than a year — speeds that are still years away from being deployed in most U.S. communities.
To give customers more for their money, we continually invest in new technologies like better WiFi and a seamless way to stream video from any source to any screen using Xtream. We increased internet speeds or added faster speed tiers 11 times in the past 15 years. We’ve upgraded customer modems and gateways so all components can handle our blazing-fast speeds.
Using private capital, we recently built-out additional miles of fiber to reach 400 more homes in expanding neighborhoods of Waterloo, Hudson and Evansdale. We also extended fiber to make 1-Gig speeds readily available to another 60 commercial properties in Waterloo and Cedar Falls. Our Waterloo customer center was the first, company-wide, to receive a complete make-over to better serve customers.
Waterloo has been one of the top recipients of our company’s investments — money that has stayed in Waterloo to make tangible improvements that people can see in our facilities and experience with our innovative products and industry-leading internet speeds.