The city of Lafayette now has an opportunity for tremendous economic development and job creation. Thanks to our leaders' innovative thinking, we have an opportunity to separate and distinguish ourselves from our neighbors and the nation. The fiber-to-the-home plan aims to network every home and business in Lafayette. This will establish Lafayette as a technology center and attract individuals and businesses to our area. We must seize this opportunity.

If a vote of the people were held today, based on facts, the fiber plan would easily pass. Unfortunately, BellSouth and Cox have a tremendous monetary advantage. City leaders and LUS can't spend a dime on advertising. Cox and BellSouth have already shown their propensity for lies, distortion and scare tactics in the brief advertising campaign we saw only a few months ago aimed at stopping the fiber plan at the city council level.

Why are the big corporations ' Cox and BellSouth ' so vehemently against this plan? Do you think for a second that they are concerned about the well-being of the residents of Lafayette? Not a chance. These corporations are only interested in protecting their bottom line. They would rather continue to raise rates, cut services and send profits to out-of-state investors. What has your cable bill done lately and how about your channel variety? If it's like mine, we're on a pace to spend $40 for five channels.

LUS has a good track record and will offer better phone, cable, Internet and other communications services for lower rates. The fact that these big out-of-state corporations with virtual monopolies are so up in arms about this tells me that something is right about this plan. The plan will result in jobs and economic development for the city as well as better and less expensive services for residents. Better yet, the money we all spend for these services would stay in the Lafayette community instead of being shipped off to Atlanta.

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