I have been watching the debate on the fiber-to-the-home issue ("Downloading Durel," Feb. 9). I hear how great it will be for the people of Lafayette to have warp-speed Internet at home.
Is this a financially feasible project? If Lafayette Utilities System borrows $125 million, with a 15-year pay back period at 3.5 percent annual interest, that means the monthly payments to pay off the bonds will be $893,603 per month. If LUS charges $60 per month for a "triple play" ' as they call it ' that means that just to cover the debt service, 14,893 homes will have to subscribe to this "triple play" just to cover the debt. This $893,603 per month does not include the cost of employees, vehicles, insurance, office rental, marketing costs, etc.
I wonder if any Lafayette area bank would loan LUS $125 million for this deal. I doubt it. Mr. [Bill] Fenstermaker, one of the big proponents of this fiber-to-the-home, is chairman of the board of IberiaBank. I wonder if his bank would loan LUS $125 million for this project. I doubt it. I would bet that the board of directors of IberiaBank would vote no on this loan request.
Mr. Durel, if this fiber-to-the-home project fails, how much will my electricity bill and water bill go up to cover the debt service on this project? The way I look at it, my electricity will go up about $60 per month or more. One more question, Mr. Durel ' If LUS were your personal business, would you risk all you have for this fiber-to-the-home deal? I doubt you would.
If we are the shareholders of LUS, then why don't you do what other companies owned by stockholders do? Let us vote!