Sign this petition to let the City Council know you support keeping BT citizen-owned!
…a Burlington Telecom subscriber? Call your council members and tell them you support Keep BT Local.
…a Burlington resident? Attend the Burlington City Council meeting at 7 PM on Monday 9/18, show support, and take the mic.
…a business owner or leader? Call all the council members and tell them how BT helps your business, how it helps attract and retain your employees, and how important it is that it stay locally controlled.
…active on Front Porch Forum or Nextdoor? Write a post and activate your neighbors!
…on Facebook? Like our page and share some posts!
…on Twitter? Follow @KeepBTLocal and retweet us!
In other words, talk about it!
Got some extra cash? Help us buy BT and pledge to buy some shares.
Got questions? Learn why…
- BT is key to our economic well-being
- Whoever buys BT will decide
- A co-op is the best choice
- A Local Co-op Board will Represent Local Views
A Telecom Owned by the People, For the People
IN 2011, WE AGREED THAT IS WAS IMPORTANT FOR BT TO REMAIN LOCALLY OWNED. AS THE SALE OF BT NEARS A FINAL DECISION, IT’S TIME TO LET OUR ELECTED OFFICIALS KNOW THAT THIS WORLD-CLASS TELECOM SHOULD BE OWNED BY THE COMMUNITY, NOT OUTSIDE PRIVATE GROUPS.
- BURLINGTON TELECOM WAS ENVISIONED, CREATED, FUNDED, AND BUILT BY CITY TAXPAYERS AND SUBSCRIBERS. Transforming it into a local cooperative will provide the city with a minority stake in the company, and will ensure that taxpayers and subscribers reap the long-term benefits of a currently thriving telecom. Our community paid for BT and we should keep the ownership—and the profits.
- THE KEEP BT LOCAL BID OFFERS THE MOST STABLE, LONG-TERM FINANCIAL PAYBACK TO THE PEOPLE OF BURLINGTON. The long-term payback of the KBTL bid carries a current value of least $5 million more than its bid price. Only the co-op can keep rates low and provide patronage refunds to subscriber members. There are 260 telecom cooperatives in 31 states that, combined, generate $3.9B in revenue, $1.3B in value-added income to their members and communities, employ 23,000 people, and have returned tens of millions of dollars (over decades) to their member-owners in the form of patronage refunds, or shares of the profits.
- OUR BID REPAYS THE CITY AND BT’S CURRENT PROFITABILITY WILL ENABLE US TO EXPAND IT AND MAKE IT STRONGER. The city of Burlington will owe $0 related to BT after this sale, and hold only a minority stake (as a condition of any sale). BT is currently profitable and on track to net $3 million this year, which is more than enough to pay down the long-term debt and to maintain, improve, and expand its operations. All 7000 current subscribers will automatically become co-op member-owners, giving BT an immediate, additional source of equity.
- KEEPING BT LOCAL AND UNDER THE CONTROL OF ITS MEMBER-OWNERS WILL ENSURE TRANSPARENCY AND ACCOUNTABILITY. Keep BT Local is, to date, the only bidder to publicly inform the community about its bid and its plans. Why did no other bidder identify themselves? Do they really want to be part of our community, or do they just want to buy off a key asset and make a profit?
- OUR VISION FOR BT IS TO INCREASE BUSINESS REVENUE AND GROW by using “fiber-hoods” and smart growth strategies that use system revenues wisely to expand within the City of Burlington and adjacent communities. Our financing partner, Maine Fiber, has expertise that will help us meet our goal of building a reliable, affordable, and highly competitive service for the future. This combination will make our Co-op not only the most responsive and affordable system, but one of the best in the country that is superior to the competition, because BT was built that way.
- INVEST IN BT’S FUTURE TODAY! Visit this website (www.keepbtlocal.com) to become a Co-op member. In addition, visit Milk Money Vermont (www.milkmoneyvt.com) and make an investment pledge toward our equity crowdfunding campaign to raise $1 million from the community. Nearly $350,000 has been pledged to date (Aug. 28) toward that investment goal.