Massachusetts town wants fiber as part of Comcast franchise renewal

While Philadelphia's increasingly rancorous franchise renewal negotiations with Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA) are sure to steal the spotlight, smaller towns continue to work through issues with the nation's largest MSO as they sort out their technological future.

In Wareham, Mass., city fathers want Comcast to install fiber between its hub site and town hall as well as the Wareham Community Television studios. Comcast's counteroffer does not specify the type of connection that will be installed, according to a story in the Wareham Local.

"I don't want the town to get stuck with old technology," Wareham Cable Advisory Committee Chairman Paul Ciccotelli said. "We don't want copper (coaxial) cables."

The issues go beyond the connections between the hub and municipal buildings.

CAC liaison Selectman Peter Teitlebaum cited multiple complaints from Comcast subscribers over poor signal quality and signal reception that he blamed on coaxial connections.

"I don't think the board of selectmen will be pleased if fiber optic cables are not specifically required in the final (estimated 60-page) agreement," he said.

William Sullivan, an attorney representing Comcast, pointed out that both parties are agreed on most of the report with only last-minute revisions unresolved.

Comcast, he said, has agreed to install a new video return system as part of the proposal, which is "better than you see in other places."

For more:
- read this Wareham Journal story

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