Governor Terry E. Branstad and Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds today announced their intention to reject bids related to the sale of the Iowa Communications Network (ICN).
"Though I appreciate the time and effort it took for Iowa Network Services to develop their bids, I believe the ICN is worth more to the State of Iowa than what the bidder was willing to pay," said Branstad. "Not only were the bids significantly less than the amount the state has invested in the network over the years, the bids were less than the recent $25 million upgrade of the network."
The state received two bids for the ICN, which the Iowa Telecommunications and Technology Commission voted to reject. Their recommendation was then sent to the governor for consideration. Under Iowa law, the ICN cannot be sold without the prior authorization of the governor and a constitutional majority of both houses of the Legislature.
"It would be a disservice to the taxpayers of Iowa to sell this important asset for pennies on the dollar," Branstad continued.
Reynolds noted the wide input sought as the administration weighed the future of the ICN.
"Our office heard from a variety of stakeholders, including legislators, public safety leaders, health care providers, and members of the telecommunications industry," said Reynolds. "In addition to valuable stakeholder input, this decision was also informed by a detailed review of the bid proposals, along with the unanimous recommendation of the Iowa Telecommunications and Technology Commission to reject the bids."
Branstad said the ICN will continue to play an important role for Iowans.
"The ICN has been an important resource for Iowans over the past two decades, and we believe it can continue to provide an important service to those who depend on it," said Branstad.