- Associated Press - Friday, January 1, 2016

THETFORD, Vt. (AP) - EC-Fiber, a high-speed Internet service serving 24 east-central Vermont towns plus the city of Montpelier, has formed a new governance structure in hopes of making it easier to borrow money.

Legislation that took effect Jan. 1 allows creation of Vermont’s first communications union district, essentially a municipal utility district without taxing authority that raises money from investors and users.

District Chairman Irv Thomae (‘TOE-may’) says select boards in the member towns have voted to join the district. He says the change continues all existing relationships with member towns, customers and investors.

But he says the new structure will be more understandable to the broader financial community than the current inter-local contract structure. The hope is that will make it easier to get financing for expansion.

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