Comcast fights for same tax break as Google Fiber

The cable company argues that its hyper-fast Gigabit Pro Internet service makes it eligible for the state ‘gigabit’ tax exemption.

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Oregon cities are crying foul, but the staff of the Oregon Public Utility Commission says Comcast meets the letter of the broadly written law – even if hardly anyone signs up for a service critics say would cost subscribers $4,600 in the first year alone.

State utility regulators will vote on Comcast’s application Tuesday, with ‘tens of millions’ of dollars on the line, according to local government officials who hope to block the company’s pending tax break and preserve a revenue stream they fought for years to keep.

‘If the application is approved, schools, libraries and local governments across the state would receive significantly less revenue,’ wrote Mary Beth Henry, director of Portland’s Office of Community Technology, in a letter to state regulators. ‘This application was not the kind anticipated by the Legislature.’

(READ MORE: Oregon Live)

Google Fiber is closer to establishing a Portland connection than it was two years ago. State utility regulators vote Tuesday to decide if Google qualifies for the gigabit tax break, according to Oregon Live.