On March 24, 2014, Olds Town Council gave second and third reading to two bylaws which would provide a loan of $8-million to the Olds Institute for Community and Regional Development. Council approved the bylaws . The funds will be used by O-NET, a community owned broadband fibre optic network, to complete their infrastructure construction and follow through in changes outlined in their new business plan.
On February 18th, a presentation from the chair of the Olds Institute and members of O-NET stated that the loan would be for capital purchases and to cover some operating shortfalls. (watch the video here). O-NET’s new business plan includes completing construction in the final three service areas in the municipality. They also plan on replacing the TV set-top boxes which will be more compatible with North American television services.
The town plans to make an application to Alberta Municipal Affairs for a $14-million increase to its current debt limit to back the new $8-million loan and the $6-million loan given to the Olds Institute and O-NET in 2010.
by Dean Owen
March 25, 2014