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More Heat Over Multimillion Dollar Hotwire Deal In Boca Falls


BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) — BocaNewsNow.com broke the story several weeks ago that Boca Falls, a huge gated community west of 441 between Palmetto Park Road and Glades Road is dropping Comcast for the somewhat controversial Hotwire Communications.  
While BocaNewsNow.com has found Hotwire representatives to be forthcoming and helpful when we’ve asked questions, their image in online forums in Florida, and nationally, leaves a bit to be desired. Now there is the rumbling of an upswell of homeowner dissatisfaction in Boca Falls that board members made a long term, costly decision that will impact resale values due to rising HOA fees — fees needed to fund the multimillion dollar Hotwire contract. 
Here is one letter we received, in its entirety, highlighting concerns: 
 “I live in Boca Falls. When I heard the news that not only our Board decided to sign a contract worth over 4.5 million with Hotwire for 7 years for our basic (analog, what a joke) service, but that we the homeowners were also getting charged for internet in our dues, I was disgusted to say the least. 
Why did our board even need waste their time to negotiate this service? Why do we need to be treated like children, and not be allowed to vote on a multi-million dollar contract. Where is the benefit of this contract to homeowners? 
Our dues are currently $250.00 per month. Of that amount, roughly $30 is for our Comcast basic cable service. With the new Hotwire Communications deal, our dues will increase roughly, $37.00 per month due to the forced internet charge. 
To the Boca Falls Board, I speak directly to you now, I sent you a letter over a month ago. Out of the 9 of you, only 2 had the decency to respond. The Director of my subdivision did not even answer, but he is the same person that did not seek my or anyone else’s opinion when inking this deal. How dare you cram internet down my throat. I have had my email address for 9 years, and I have no issues with Comcast as my internet provider. 
Why must you include internet, and why choose a company that Castle Management recommended? Are you getting a kickback, or some other monetary compensation? I just don’t get it. You have gone backward in technology and believed the word of a very small company with terrible reviews. 
The above letter from a Boca Isles South Board member does not convince me that Hotwire is the way to go.In this very tough economy, the Boca Falls Board of Directors should have been looking for ways to REDUCE our dues, not force unwanted services upon us. 
The $67.00 per month for 2nd rate internet and analog cable is RIDICULOUS. If I want any digital channels on my TV’s with Hotwire, I must hook a box to each one. So currently, I have 5 TV’s that are connected to Comcast. The first box is free with Hotwire, the rest are $6.95 each, which adds $27.80 to my so now I am up to a $94.00 charge. For BASIC digital cable with HBO only and minimal speed internet. Now let’s not forget the $13.95 I MUST PAY for DVR service (to be able to record anything) to use the Hotwire boxes. So now that is up to $108.00 But wait, that’s not all. In order to enjoy the HDTV’s we currently own, that is another $9.95 per month, putting my monthly now at $118.00. And to really compare what I would be giving up if I switch to Hotwire, I currently am subscribed to all channels, premium and otherwise, which to get that with Hotwire, (their package called the works) I would need to add another $39.99 to my Hotwire bill, which now totals $158.00.
So gees Boca Falls, please tell me how you saved me ANY money whatsoever. I am floored at the obvious lack of understanding regarding technology and what else is available on the market, for TV and Internet. Plus, if I were to go with Hotwire Communications, I no longer can use my iPad app for Xfinity (Comcast), not have ANY pay per view channels, plus I lose my email account I have had for 9 years.The bottom line is that my current deal with Comcast, is a MUCH better deal than I am being offered, scratch that, forced into with Hotwire. 
I have been told I can opt out, but that’s not really true, since my dues will be going up and I will have to pay for Hotwire whether I want it or not.So here is the bottom line. With my current Comcast, I have extremely fast Internet, all the premium channels, pay per view, my iPad app that I can view movies/TV shows, plus program my DVR, my HD channels, etc And I pay about $95.00 per month for ALL of that. So now, Comcast will add the $30.00 no longer being included in my homeowners dues, which will increase my Comcast bill to about $125 (still cheaper than Hotwire for all the services mentioned above).
BUT, thanks to the Boca Falls Board of Directors, I now have to pay an additional $67.00 in Homeowners Dues for a service I DO NOT WANT AND WOULD NOT HAVE CHOSEN, bringing my monthly TV/Internet Bill to $192.00. WOW, just WOWThanks for nothing Boca Falls Board of Directors. 
Next time you want to sign a 4.5 million dollar contract, for a bulk contract that benefits NO ONE, please think twice. You could have let us fend for ourselves and find our own deals without forcing us to pay for a contract none of us voted for, and MANY of us do not want.” 
While it is not for us to take sides, we do appreciate the substance based argument, and welcome rebuttals. We do know that Hotwire is already on location in Boca Falls, surveying properties and preparing to lay cable. 


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3 thoughts on “More Heat Over Multimillion Dollar Hotwire Deal In Boca Falls”

  1. Disgusted in Boca Falls

    I heard that since Internet is not a necessary utility, like electricity, the Boca Falls Board cannot legally charge our dues without a formal vote from the homewowners. Where can the homeowners turn for help?

  2. Whether Boca Falls Board made a right choice or not is not the issue. I live in Boca Falls and not sure if they might the right decision or not. We will just have to wait and see… But we elect board members to make decisions for us… some good… some not so good. But that is their job (volunteer I might add). If you are not happy with decisions they make.. Join the board. I am glad I don’t have to sit thru those boring meetings each month.

  3. disgusted in Boca Falls

    To Joe,
    Actually the issue is exactly that the Board made the WRONG decision. Yes they are “volunteer” positions, however, it is still their responsibility to act on behalf of the 722 homeowners interests. In this case, the Board has failed the community, massively! Did the Board of Boca Falls canvas their neighbors? No. Did they send out a ballot to each home for a vote on an over 4.5 million dollar contract? No. Did the the Boca Falls Association lawyer tell the board that they don’t need the homeowner votes to add to our dues by including Internet? Yes. Just because a lawyer and a Board of Directors have (or think they have) the power to make these choices on behalf of so many homeowners, does not mean they should. They abused their power in this case and have disrespected their neighbors in the process. And sitting through “boring meetings” as you put it? Not so. When this decision was made, and the Board voted with 2 opposed, it was a very heated argument and scene from what I was told. What’s funny about that is knowing they were worked up for an unnecessary bulk contract. Good thing we aren’t paying them! I’d be even more furious.