Residents e-mail officials about cable competition (1 Viewer)


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Stand against retrans!!!
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Apr 18, 2005
DeKalb County, AL
Area residents have sent elected officials dozens of e-mails denouncing temporary bans on new utility boxes and supporting competition among cable TV providers.

The letters back AT&T's "Project Lightspeed," which would distribute video over a fiber optic network.

Many cities, including Batavia, Geneva, Carpentersville, Roselle, Wheaton and North Aurora, want AT&T to agree to franchise agreements in exchange for use of public and private right of ways.

To give them time to look into the agreements and other issues, city leaders have imposed temporary moratoriums on new utility boxes.

"With the e-mails, they're just asking us to be considerate and not to bar fair competition," said North Aurora Village President John Hansen. "We're not trying to circumvent any type of fair competition, but it's got to be on the same playing field."

Similar e-mails also have been received in Carpentersville and Cary.

Carpentersville Village President Bill Sarto said he had received about six e-mails from concerned residents.

"They were all pretty much worded the same way," Sarto said. "They want to encourage us to open up competition to cable TV."

Carpentersville, Wheaton and Roselle are facing lawsuits for blocking the infrastructure upgrades. Lawsuits have been threatened in other communities, city officials have said.

Cary Public Works Committee Chairman Tom Kierna said he has gotten e-mails from about a dozen people, some of whom he's identified as AT&T employees. Other city officials also speculate that the majority of the letters are coming from AT&T employees.

"They're friendly and promoting AT&T's position," Kierna said. "But we need to control the placement of these outdoor enclosures that they will need to run the fiber to the homes."

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