FiOS Rally In Buffalo

April 18, 2011 Updated Apr 18, 2011 at 7:32 PM EDT

By Lou Chilelli

...
April 18, 2011 Updated Apr 18, 2011 at 7:32 PM EDT

Buffalo, N.Y. (WKBW) -- Verizon FiOS is not available to City of Buffalo residents, many are asking the company why not. A group of local activists and politicians held a news conference outside of Verizon's downtown Buffalo office. The communications giant has yet to bring its FiOS internet and television service to the City of Buffalo. "Without Verizon FiOS, Buffalo might loose potential economic development opportunities. Businesses of all sizes need fast reliable internet to expand and compete with other businesses," Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown said.

FiOS is available in several suburban communities. The coalition here...wants to make sure that the City of Buffalo is in the company's future plans. "When efforts were made to put FiOS in suburban communities around Buffalo...they should not have excluded Buffalo. It would just seem like a natural. If you are doing East Aurora...if you are doing Orchard Park you should be doing Buffalo as well," remarked State Assemblymember Crystal Peoples-Stokes.

This group doesn't want city residents to miss out on some of the educational resources that higher speed internet access can bring. "Information is knowledge and the only way to have access to knowledge is to have access to these sorts of services," Peoples-Stokes added.

"Competition brings prices down. Competition can help to produce better services," Mayor Brown said. The area would also see jobs from the installation of the new system and from workers hired to maintain the new equipment. Mayor Brown would like to begin talks with Verizon to make sure that the service comes to the city.