Connect

Collins Statement on Windstream Filing for Bankruptcy

Feb 27, 2019
Press Release

GAINESVILLE—Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.) released the following statement after telecommunications provider Windstream filed for bankruptcy.

“For years, Windstream has taken advantage of customers and taxpayers by promising speeds they know they can’t meet and failing to provide consistent broadband service while collecting taxpayer dollars and receiving substantial federal tax breaks. Despite it's bankruptcy status, the burden of Windstream's financial problems cannot fall on the shoulders of taxpayers who depend on their services to access the Internet. Windstream must continue to meet its obligations under the Connect America Fund to provide broadband service to rural communities like northeast Georgia.

“Since I first took office, I have received hundreds upon hundreds of complaints from Ninth District residents regarding virtually every aspect of Windstream’s service in Northeast Georgia. Businesses have been unable to operate efficiently because of unreliable service. Students in rural areas fail to gain access to high-speed internet they need to complete their school work at home. Despite repeated efforts to prompt Windstream to address these issues, they continue to fall short.

“I continue to believe increased competition spurs improvement, which is why I’ve introduced the Connect America Fund Accountability Act to hold providers accountable. I remain committed to holding carriers like Windstream accountable, and working to expand broadband access in Northeast Georgia and beyond.”

Background

  • Last month, Rep. Collins introduced the Connect America Fund (CAF) Accountability Act of 2019, to hold providers like Windstream accountable.
  • In June 2017, Rep. Collins introduced the Gigabit Opportunity (GA) Act to incentivize providers to expand broadband infrastructure to communities that lack high-speed access.
  • In May 2016, Rep. Collins met with Windstream CEO Tony Thomas to discuss the ongoing issues with Windstream service in Northeast Georgia.
  • In April 2016, Rep. Collins sent a letter to Windstream CEO Tony Thomas to follow up on previous concerns and emphasize the growing number of complaints from Windstream customers.
  • In February 2016, Rep. Collins requested information from Windstream after receiving hundreds of complaints of unsatisfactory and substandard service from Windstream customers in the Ninth District.