Dear Concerned Citizen, Now that The New Takhoman is dead we here at The Tacomic have been collecting more and more of his ANONYMOUS tipsters looking for a new alternative media outlet. Several of these ANONYMOUS tips seemed to overlap on the issue of CLICK! so tonight we dedicate this cartoon to you ANONYMOUS!
DEEP THROAT: "Dear RR, TPU Director Bill Gaines is cooking the books in order to justify his desired end state: getting rid of Click by privatizing it. Gaines has been accomplishing this by arbitrarily changing cost allocations to make Click look like it's a money-loser. This is very similar to how Paul Ryan and other conservatives want to treat Social Security, or how the Republicans are making the US Postal Office look like it's 'going broke' by requiring it to pay for its future pension needs 75 years into the future. 'It's going broke' is usually the textbook strategy for government officials trying to privatize something. [i think] A majority of the City Council does not support leasing the Click network to Wave... have heard again and again that Click is a public asset that we should be leveraging more for economic development and furthering equity."
ANONYMOUS PRIME: "Hey RR, There is a disturbing revolving door between senior TPU management and the telecom industry. For instance, the regional vice president for Wave Broadband is Cyndi Wikstrom - a former Click director."
ZERO C00L: "RR, I have really dug into this issue--privatizing Click is convenient for Bill Gaines, but would be terrible for Tacoma. I see Wave (and Rainier Connect) salivating over getting $200 million
Tacoma investment for pennies on the dollar, while supremely arrogant
Bill Gaines is patting the city council members on the head telling them
that daddy really does know best, while also turning his back to the
hometown ISPs. Meanwhile also show Gaines kicking Cable TV into the garbage can with a
tag that says Click is too much work TPU CEO and it is cutting into his
golf game. A note showing Gaines as being the best paid city employee,
something like $320,000 a year + $50K going to his retirement account."
ACID BURN: "Brother RR, Basically, Gaines is the problem. Since 1997, Tacoma Power has been
responsible for 25% of the costs of maintaining the telecommunications network, Click for 75%. TPU management is proposing to shift the
costs to 94% to Click, an addition of more than $7 million dollars. And
though this big cost shift has not been officially approved by the TPU
Board or the city council, Gaines is using that number to justify the
claim that Click is a loser and needs to be privatized. The essence is that Gaines feels Click is too much work (because winning
customers is hard work for management used to being a monopoly), not a
core function of Tacoma Public Utilities (TPU), and he is not committed
to making it work. And as it happens, the recently passed Tacoma Charter Amendment 6
give the city council the newly won power to confirm or fire the TPU CEO
every two years start this year in 2015. And that question is coming
up, and your cartoon can speak to the question."