NBN – an opportunity to complain directly to the Minister.

nbntower+cobwebs

We have an opportunity to attend a forum with the Minister responsible for the two year plus delay in turning on NBN in Lake Clifton. Construction of the tower started in January 2014 and even with the piecemeal bits of work that were done, it was completed and connected to the exchange by the start of 2015. Why has it not been turned on????

So Minister Fifield is coming to Canning to tell us how great everything is and we have an opportunity to tell him loud and clear that the contractor is either incompetent or just ignoring us. We should turn up in force next Thursday and make sure that he hears us. I have a family commitment which means I cannot go to the Pinjarra session but I am hoping to make the Byford session. Hope lots of you can get to Pinjarra!!

Community NBN Forum with special guest the Minister for Communications, Senator the Hon Mitch Fifield

When: Thursday 14 April

Where: Serpentine Jarrahdale Recreation Centre, Byford
Time: 9.00am-10.30am

OR
Where: Pinjarra Bowling and Recreation Club, Pinjarra
Time: 11.30am-1.00pm

Cost: Free
RSVP: andrew.hastie.mp@aph.gov.au

Following is a copy of the fairy tale I wrote in January 2015.

The NBN at Lake Clifton

A Fairy Tale

Once upon a time, the NBN Company decided to build a fixed wireless tower on the top of the hill on Old Bunbury Road to provide SUPERFAST BROADBAND to everyone. Sadly, they did not do this in a super fast manner.

The work started in January last year (that’s 2014) and from time to time, various groups of people came along and stayed for a few days doing different things. First they prepared the site, then much later, they poured the concrete and some time after that, they delivered the tower in bits. These bits waited patiently until another group came along and erected them and built a fence around it.

And there it sat for about 6 months until yet another group came along with a small back hoe and a bobcat to run a fibre optic cable from the phone exchange to the tower, a distance of about 1 kilometre. They quickly discovered that their little back hoe was no match for our limestone so they also went away after a couple of days saying “we will return in two weeks”. The weeks stretched into months and finally another group appeared with a horizontal borer which was a match for the rock and they put in some ducting. Like all the others, they also departed and quite soon after (only a couple of weeks) another party of people arrived and dug through the sandy bits and pulled the cable through the ducting. This brought us to late November.
Then more people came and put things on the tower and appeared to connect it all up.

And here we are in January 2015 and the tower has not been activated. It looks to be complete but who knows what has yet to be done. We can only guess that sometime, perhaps this year, we will all be able to connect to the NBN. Their web site says they will write to us (snail mail anyone?) to tell us when we are able to connect and it is VERY likely that we will be deluged with offers from the 51 companies who will be retailing NBN services in our area. A quick scan of the plans offered by a few of these companies indicates that you need to be really careful when making this decision. Questions you need to ask include:

does the plan include a router so that I can access the internet anywhere in my house?
what extra charges are invloved if I decide to have my phone connected via the NBN?
how much data do I really need? (there is no point in paying for 100 GB per month if you only use the internet for email)
am I likely to watch movies, play games etc on the internet?

All of the marketing stresses the ability to do these things but it is not compulsory.

I am sure we will all live happily ever after with or without the NBN but as I bump up against my 4 GB allowance each month, I will probably use it IF it is finally turned on.

This is not the end of the fairy tale. To be continued (when the story develops) …It is now 15 months later and there is nothing to add!

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