Vermont's Burlington Telecom looks to settle $33M suit with Citbank, considers selling assets

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Vermont's troubled Burlington Telecom is working to settle its $33.5 million lawsuit with Citibank, one of its key investors, for $10.5 million, reports the Burlington Free Press.

The dispute between Burlington and Citbank can be traced back to 2010, when the Burlington City Council legally dissolved its lease agreement with the bank and stopped allocating lease payments.

Citibank then moved to repossess Burlington Telecom's fiber optics, switching gear and servers, buildings and vehicles. The bank's efforts were held up by Vermont regulators who claimed such action would cause an abrupt disruption of voice, video and data services and damage the utility's "public good."

Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger, who assumed oversight of the network from his predecessors Bob Kiss and Peter Clavelle, said that the settlement would give it "a clear path to the resolution of our BT challenges."

Although it was not revealed who could purchase the network, Weinberger said the network has garnered interest from a number of interested parties.

Besides selling the network to a private company, another option proposed by community group KeepBTlocal.com would be to turn it into a "user-owned cooperative." However, the co-op option would have to put together an interim or "bridge" financing package to settle with Citbank.  

For more:
- Burlington Free Press has this article

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