Connecting your home or business to a fiber optic network in G …

DELTA fiber recently launched a campaign to build a fiber optic network in Gulpen-Wittem. Everyone in the municipality (regardless of whether you live in the inner or outer area) gets the opportunity to get their home or business connected through DELTA fiber to fast and stable internet. Sometimes a connection costs extra money. This applies, for example, to houses in the outer area.

In this article you can read more about a fiber optic network, how DELTA fiber calculates the cost of a connection and what role the municipality has in building a network.

The Internet is important to many people
The Internet has become one of the basic needs of many people. In recent years, we have noticed how important good and fast internet is due to forced homework and distance learning. This is not present everywhere in the Netherlands and also in our municipality. A fiber optic network can provide this. A connection to the network costs money. Residents can choose for themselves whether they want to bear these costs for a connection.

High speed internet is not a collective facility
Despite the great need that society has, fast internet is not a collective supply (also called: ‘utility supply’) like drinking water or electricity (in the beginning). At the beginning of the last century, the Dutch government believed that electricity and drinking water should be available to everyone. A basic necessity of life, accessible to all and not for profit, which everyone should be able to use in the same way. As a result, you paid a unit price for the connection to, for example, drinking water, regardless of whether you lived in the middle of the city or in the countryside. (Today, this has also changed, because if your house is more than 50 meters from the road, Limburg Water Company will pass on the additional costs). A national network for access to the world wide web as a collective resource (government-controlled and accessible to all) never came to anything. Pursuant to the Telecommunications Act, all municipalities must co-operate on the realization of a fiber network. This means that if a party reports to a municipality to install a fiber network, the municipality can or must reject that party.

Limited influence on the construction of high speed internet
Although we believe that fast internet should be possible and accessible to everyone, we as a municipality are completely dependent on market partners. The construction and operation of Internet facilities via fiber optics is a commercial activity of a company (in a free market), and this company determines its own rules. It is therefore not an activity from the municipality or another government, and the municipality has no influence on this. We have no control over connection costs and cost differentiation. However, we can state what our wishes, rules and requirements are for construction and implementation. The municipality’s main purpose is to ensure that the work proceeds smoothly and safely, while keeping the nuisance to society to a minimum.

In collaboration with 9 other municipalities in Sydlimburg, we were looking for a company that:
1. wants to install a fiber optic cable everywhere, including in the countryside;
2. wishes to build this in all southern Limburg municipalities with a large outlying area;
3. requires the lowest possible personal contribution from residents.

No illegal financial support
Installation of fiber optic cables in rural areas is less interesting for market participants than in urban areas. Therefore, the cost of these more expensive compounds is often (partially) passed on to the owner. Residents in rural areas may wonder why we as a municipality do not bear these costs because we believe that affiliation should be possible for everyone. But in doing so, we are providing illegal state aid, with the possible consequence that other parties may also claim that aid. The municipality must, on the basis of national legislation, allow the construction of a telecommunications network. If a party registers, the municipality must cooperate. As a resident, you can of course be completely free to decide whether you want to use DELTA fiber offers.

What is standing fee?
The ambition with DELTA Fiber Netwerk is to connect all residents and entrepreneurs in Sydlimburg, and therefore also in Gulpen-Wittem municipality, to fiber optics. As a market partner, we are responsible for getting the investment in building the network back. However, the installation of fiberglass in Sydlimburg is a major challenge. The cost of construction in rural and sparsely populated areas is higher than in the larger cities of the Netherlands. The average distance between the houses – and from the houses to the road – is greater here than in villages and towns. Sometimes we encounter more natural barriers like trees and waterways. Excavation work therefore entails additional costs. In order to make the fiber optic connection available to all addresses in rural and sparsely populated areas, we are forced to ask for a contribution: that is the standing fee.

What do you pay for standing fees?
If you choose super-fast and stable fiber optics, you subscribe to the internet, TV and / or telephony at one of the telecommunications providers: Caiway, DELTA, Helden Van Nu or Online.nl. If your address is in a rural area or in a sparsely populated area, you pay a fixed fee in addition to the subscription from the telecommunications provider for your home. This is an amount of € 8.16 per. month. However, you can also choose to buy this once for € 1,000. In this case, you will no longer pay extra costs per. month. Please note: If you sign up before July 13, 2022, you will save on connection costs. If you sign up after 13 July 2022, you will pay a connection fee of at least € 950.

Do you have questions about Gulpen-Wittem municipality as a result of this message? Send an email to fiber@gulpen-wittem.nl

Delta Customer Service can be contacted for fiber optic questions at:
Internet www.delta.nl/kundeservice
Telephone Fiber optics: 0118 22 55 25

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