State audit of Burlington telecom due out Thursday

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MONTPELIER, VT. (AP) - The Vermont Department of Public Service is expected to release a new audit of Burlington’s troubled city phone, cable TV and Internet venture.

DPS Commissioner David O'Brien says his department’s report, due out Thursday, does not point to criminal wrongdoing. Instead, he says it points to “wanton foolishness” by city officials who allowed Burlington Telecom to rack up $50 million in debt, $17 million of it improperly borrowed from city taxpayers.

Meanwhile, a lawyer for Burlington Telecom told the Public Service Board on Wednesday the city hopes to walk a fiber-optic tightrope in the coming months, keeping a finance company at bay and finding new equipment before its current system is repossessed.

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