Mobilitie’s Increased Transparency is Somewhat Opaque

Back on May 27, 2016 Martha DeGrasse of RCR Wireless published a very interesting article titled, “Mobilitie to increase transparency for jurisdictions”.  It’s well worth going back to (re)read her article about how Mobilitie’s President, Christos Karmis said his firm would use its own corporate name with local jurisdictions.

Huh? Use its own name? Why is this a big deal?

Well, this arose out of Mobilitie’s process of using “<INSERT THE STATE NAME> Utility Pole Authority” names with local governments.  Using the word “Authority” as an entity identification in government filings suggests that the entity is, itself, some sort of governmental agency. That’s made clear in Martha’s article.

With Mr. Karmis’s assurance back in May, many of us on the government side thought the hide-the-ball issue was resolved.

Fast forward two months after Martha’s article to July 28, 2016. That’s the date on a letter from Keenan Adamchak, legal counsel for a nifty new entity called “Pole & Fiber Network Authority ME, LLC”, addressed to the Maine Public Utilities Commission.

What did the July letter request on behalf of  the Pole & Fiber Network Authority ME, LLC?  The first paragraph of the letter sets out that

On behalf of Pole & Fiber Network Authority ME, LLC (“Pole & Fiber Network Authority ME,”
or the “Company”), transmitted herewith is the Company’s Application for Authority to Provide
Intrastate Local Exchange Telecommunications Service in the State of Maine.

I suppose Mobilitie, which set up Pole & Fiber Network Authority ME, LLC back in February, is still enamored with being called an Authority.  Given that local governments commonly ask for proof of state authority to operate in those local jurisdictions when an entity seeks local permits and authorizations, names really do count.

It’s my opinion that the Maine application, filed over two months after Mr. Karmis’s comments about transparency, suggests a parallel with another matter of public concern and interest where the words counted:

That’s my opinion. What’s yours?