Signing of cable franchise contract nears
by Denise Strub
Jul 07, 2013 | 3270 views | 0 0 comments | 99 99 recommendations | email to a friend | print
If things go according to plan, Cleveland leaders will enter into an agreement with Cable One, which has been on the shelf for about two years.

Sandi Melton with Cable One once again came before the Cleveland Board of Aldermen to discuss the franchise with the city.

“I’m asking you to consider, a 10 year franchise with a five year review,” she said. “I think that would be a win-win for all. My intent is to maintain an open door policy of communication with subscribers and city leaders.

“We want to continue to be good corporate citizens,” Melton continued. “I live here too.”

Cleveland entered into a 10-year contract with Cable One in 2001. When it ended in 2011, Cable One asked for a 15-year contract but issues with service caused the two to work with a month-to-month agreement.

Although the local office has little to do with programming of stations, loss of state and regional news broadcasts was of great concern to subscribers.

Following several town hall forums, a compromise was established in which the Memphis, Tenn., news is shown on Channel 7 and news from across the state is shown on Channel 3 at 6:30 p.m.

“Programming is continually an issue but I know there is nothing you (Melton) can do,” said Mayor Billy Nowell.

Alderman Maurice Smith asked for clarification on Melton’s proposal. “Are we starting from the date the last contract expired?”

“Starting from now,” answered Melton, who added the after the first five years of the new contract the city would review Cable One’s performance.

Before discussing the franchise contract, Melton updated the board on happenings with Cable One in Cleveland.

She mentioned that in order to provide better service, four nodes in Cleveland had each been spit into three, which reduce the number of residents which may be effected by a problem and reduce service time.

She said this had already been done this in the business area on Miss. Highway 8, which Alderman Danny Abraham, who owns a business downtown, said had really helped Internet service downtown.

In addition to improvements to the warehouse in downtown Cleveland, Melton said $1.6 million in amplifiers were being added to the city, which would bring help with whatever new technology would be coming in the future.

Melton said at least two new products were headed for the area one would be new Internet data guideline, which should completely do away with date overuse charges and TiVO.

“TiVO is like a DVR on steroids,” she said.

“I really don’t know how much longer we can discuss this,” said Alderman Gary Gainspolletti, who added the likelihood of another company coming to Cleveland, was slim.

The board agreed to vote on the contract at the August meeting.