Comcast receives ‘gigabit’ tax break, despite its high costs

Utility regulators approved Comcast, Frontier and Google Fiber for the tax break intended for affordable, high-speed Internet access; lawmakers say Comcast costs too much to qualify.

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The break wasn’t meant for Comcast, insisted Rep. Rep. Phil Barnhart (D-Eugene). He said the company’s new “Gigabit Pro” service uses an existing network and charges extreme prices the Legislature never contemplated when they approved the tax breaks last year. Awarding the tax breaks to Comcast would, Barnhart testified, reward the company for doing “nothing.”

… But utility commissioners ruled unanimously that Comcast’s service meets the letter of the law, voting 3-0 in favor of the company. That vote could be worth tens of millions of dollars to Comcast, money Oregon states and cities spent five years fighting for in court.

… For Oregon cities, counties and schools, the vote on Comcast was a major disappointment. They prevailed before the Oregon Supreme Court in 2014 after Comcast spent five years fighting central assessment in court.

(READ MORE: Oregon Live)

A nationwide Comcast outage saw 17,033 reports of customer complaints on social media, February 15, 2016, according to CNN.

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