Tuesday, August 16, 2011

NIMBY subsidy of the week

Rural broadband funding ready for England and Scotland

"We don't want to live in smelly towns with the little people, but we'd like them to cough up half a billion quid to boost the resale prices of our hosues by several thousand pounds"

Posted by mark wadsworth @ 11:35 AM (1523 views)
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15 thoughts on “NIMBY subsidy of the week

  • Well I can’t remember the last time I saw a policeman within a mile of my rural home but I still pay tax to fund them…

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  • By the look of the UK rioting, can anyone else.

    WE NEED MORE DRACONIAN LAWS. lol

    timmy t, I take it that you haven’t had a parking ticket in a while. Bends and roundabouts mate.

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  • All in the name of austerity cuts Mark.

    Broadband is more important than Armbands it would seem.

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  • Somebody said London is mostly made up of either tax dodgers or benefit cheats, so what goes around [or doesn’t in the case of tax], comes around.

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  • little professor says:

    Bit judgemental towards country folk, MW. Not all ‘rural’ people are rich Lahndan escapees. I cover a fairly large rural area in the north of England and most folk are struggling to make ends meet – they’re not all tweed-wearing toffa driving their Range Rovers to the local hunt.
    Broadband is so essential now to day to day living that this scheme makes sense

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  • mark wadsworth says:

    LP, that’s the point. BT and so on are happy to lay all the broadband and so on in cities and urban areas because it makes sense, for one hundred yards of pavement dug up, you have thirty potential customers, so even if take-up is only a third, then BT still makes money. So the population density is not nice on one hand (small gardens) but good on the other hand (you get broadband).

    So if you like living in the countryside, you have made the trade off – fields not people. If the rural NIMBYs want broadband, they can either move somewhere where they have broadband, or they can allow more houses to be built, in which case the critical mass is reached and BT will do it without a subsidy.

    Don’t forget, having broadband adds a couple of thousand quid to the value of a house, so this is the sort of thing which ought to be funded by a local LVT if anything, if they want it, they can pay for it.

    Or to turn the issue round, people in towns don’t have enough fields and forests and green spaces. Would the rural chappies like to stump up half a billion squid to finance the provision of more fields, forests etc in towns? Methinks not.

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  • MW – most people who live rurally never use trains but they subsidise them for commuters. And you all moan when the subsidy goes down and prices go up. Swings and roundabouts methinks.

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  • mark wadsworth says:

    Timmy T, when have I ever moaned about the cost of public transport? The fact that trains are so crowded suggests that the price is too low, if anything.

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  • MW – you haven’t. But I’m bored and I’m trying to start an argument!
    Let’s take away all the subsidies and reduce taxes a bit. Country yokels can spend their increased income on broadband whilst townies put the extra towards hiked rail prices.

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  • mark wadsworth says:

    Timmy T: “townies can put the extra towards hiked rail prices.”

    Agreed. Or from my point of view, it’s perfectly reasonable for the local council to subsidise stuff which free markets wouldn’t provide (like rural broadband or indeed railways) if and only if the extra LVT receipts justify it. And in most cases they do.

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  • Just wait till those rural dwellers discover tube trains and decide that the rest of us have got to pay for them as well.

    Central Line extension to Hereford anyone?

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  • Well if they’d get their bloody ruler out and draw a line between London, Birmingham and Manchester we could plough a big track through that green belt, p1ss off the London landed knobs (by reducing the value of their country gaffes), lay tons of dark fibre for the rural proles, and give Britain a modern infrastructure.

    Will it happen? Probably not, because doing the right thing in this country will never happen — there are just too many VIs to move.

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  • bubba sparks says:

    Nothing wrong with this proposal, not sure i get the big deal, or is the posting another springboard for an LVT push?

    The country as a whole benefits from more people having broadband, more people able to wfh regardless of where they live and therefore do a bit of good for the environment, sort out their work-life balance and stop Britain looking a bit backward compared to the rest of Europe.

    What’s not to like?

    Admittedly, I live in the countryside and posted this comment from home yesterday and it’s only just reached the server, but anyway. Bring on rural broadband, LVT or not.

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  • Mark W,

    One of the government’s main plans for saving money is to have everyone access government “services” online. Decent broadband is useful if you want to file your tax return online, renew your car tax or TV licence, apply for benefits, etc. Compared with the cost of running a railway network, a broadband network is incredibly cheap and incredibly good value. So yes there may be some subsidy to landowners in this, but overall it’s still a sensible idea.

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  • mark wadsworth says:

    Drewster, did I say that it wasn’t a fundamentally good idea? Nope, it probably is a good idea. I merely pointed out that there is a huge disparity between the people being forced to pay and the people benefitting.

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