Archive for Thursday, March 11, 2004

Cable guise?

City to press for larger service area with franchise agreement’s expiration

March 11, 2004

The city of De Soto will attempt to get Time-Warner Cable to provide a schedule for bringing service to homes south of Kansas Highway 10 when negotiations start with the company about renewing its franchise agreement.
City Administrator Greg Johnson said City Attorney Patrick Reavey was currently preparing a response to a draft agreement the company sent to the city. Once that was completed, negotiations would start, he said.
The city has long sought the extension of cable to the area south of the highway. The extension of high-speed Internet is seen as critical to an area designated De Soto future commercial and industrail growth area.
"I think its pretty much understood that needed to be discussed," Johnson said. "There has not be a lot of dialogue at present about our desire to see service expanded in that area."
Interest in wireless service offered by Wildcat Wireless indicated a market existed south of Kansas Highway 10, Johnson said.
An expanded service area was just one of many issues that would be part of the negotiations, Johnson said. Among other matters to be discussed Among other matters to be discussed were duration for the agreement (10 or 15 years), right-of-way access, customer satisfaction, cable-access stations for the public, and education and government use, he said.
Educational access was of importance to the school district, Johnson sadi.
The city's franchise agreement with Time-Warner required the company to pay the city a fee equal to 5 percent of gross revenue, Johnson said. The city could charge per line, but Johnson said he didn't think the city would make a change.
Revenue from the fee increased from $13,000 in 2000 to $26,000 in 2004, Johnson said. The money is allocated to the city's general fund.

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