Friday, October 28, 2011

Strickling Says $80 Million from Louisiana Failed Broadband Project Goes Back to Treasury 10/28//2011 San Francisco - Assistant U.S. Commerce Secretary Lawrence E. Strickling says his agency did all it could to save the large broadband stimulus network project in Louisiana that was terminated earlier this week. In a statement to this publication of this morning however, Strickling puts the blame for the $80 million project collapse squarely on State of Louisiana officials in the Administration of Governor Bobby Jindal (R-LA). 

Assistant Commerce Secretary Lawrence Strickling at the UCANN 40
Conference of March 2011
 “NTIA is vigorously overseeing broadband grant projects to ensure they are completed on time, on budget, and deliver the promised benefits to the communities they serve. It is our goal to intervene early with projects that are getting off track and correct problems to ensure that taxpayer dollars are not wasted on projects that otherwise would fail," said Administrator Strickling via an email from his spokesperson of this morning to

"The Louisiana project, as originally submitted, promised great benefits to unserved and underserved areas of the state. However, after the state determined it was unable to implement the original project plan and fell significantly behind schedule, it proposed major modifications to its original proposal without adequate technical and financial details and a viable schedule for completing the project."

"We have worked closely with the state throughout the last several months to rescue this project but have now concluded that we have to move on. Accordingly, as a responsible steward of taxpayer dollars, NTIA terminated the grant and will return the funds to the U.S. Treasury," concluded the statement from the Assistant Secretary, who was appointed in 2009 by President Barack Obama.
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