Sioux Falls tenants facing mandatory cable, internet subscription report slower service, substandard equipment

SIOUX FALLS, SD (Dakota News Now) -In May, a letter delivered to tenants at Dakota Pointe, West Pointe Commons, and Whisper Ridge was confusing. Some thought it was a hoax and contacted our I-Team.

The property owner, Cornerstone Residential of Bountiful, Utah, required tenants to subscribe to a Midco service through a third-party vendor Onboard today. Unfortunately, for some tenants, the service was worse than they anticipated.

“Take that away and let us have our own service.” said a tenant in frustration. He said there had been eviction threats, so we’ve kept his identity safe.

“They came in and put a modem in, however, it’s not a wireless modem. they wanted me to run ethernet cables throughout my house in order to run my tv or my computer,” he said.

Another tenant contacts us with concerns the internet service may not be as secure. This man agrees.

“I do banking online as well, and it’s some kind of community thing they put in,” he said.

Those who have made the switch had 200 mega bytes per second speeds cut in half. Their bill went from 50 dollars to 80 dollars. Following our I-team report in May, the bill was lowered to 55 dollars. Even at that price, tenants say the quality of the service and equipment is causing problems.

Midco representatives say they’re not the direct supplier and say it’s unfortunate for the tenants. We pressed further, asking why Midco would choose to do business with a third-party vendor creating these concerns, and received this response.

“We’re working with our customers to try and solve these challenges to help the tenants,” said Director of Corporate Communications Paige Pearson Meyer.

A solution could come by contacting the Federal Communications Commission, as a new regulation earlier this year could question this type of arrangement.

FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel says

“The rules will crack down on practices that prevent competition and effectively block a consumer’s ability to get lower prices or higher quality services.”

In a state that boasts of freedom, the tenants say losing their freedom of choice is unacceptable.

“I don’t think that was fair just to demand that we go to this new service,” he said.

The third-party vendor, Onboard Today, is active nationwide, working with many cable providers. As for the landlord, Cornerstone Residential, the Better Business Bureau, and feedback on social media sites reveal many negative experiences from tenants. Our I-Team has made numerous attempts to contact both parties and have not received a response.

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