The negotiation between the city of San Francisco and Earthlink over MuniFi concluded recently, and now the deal’s ultimate fate hangs with getting approval from the Board of Supervisors. We actually had no idea how iffy getting that approval might be until Earthlink’s Don Berryman said at a wireless meeting on Tuesday that out of the 11 Board of Supervisors, “4 or 5 are for the plan, 3 are against the plan, and 3 or 4 are on the table.” Who wants to create an SF MuniFi Supervisor dart board for our office?
The Earthlink/Google crew is concerned enough that they are starting an education (read PR) campaign on Wednesday, and the Mayor, Google’s Chris Sacca and Berryman are planning on visiting the editorial boards of the city’s newspapers and then one-on-one meetings with Supervisors after that. Maybe those 800 local Google jobs will come in handy somewhere — or even building the first few square miles of the network in an on-the-fence Supervisor’s district might help, joked Berryman.
If they don’t get approval the city goes back to the drawing board, which to some might be a good thing, but to the city officials and the companies involved, a huge waste of time and money. Ah, the politics of San Francisco, makes Washington D.C. look almost quaint.