Cable Competition Comes to Methuen

The City of Methuen has negotiated a preliminary agreement with Verizon that will bring the Verizon FIOS system to Methuen. I have scheduled a Public Hearing for September 4th at 3:00 p.m. (Link to the Public Hearing Notice here). This negotiation took place during the politically charged attempt by Verizon to change the way Massachusetts licenses cable systems. In effect Verizon sought to change the way cable licenses are given in Massachusetts. As part of that process Verizon has placed a moratorium on any additional municipalities seeking to negotiate with Verizon. Before that moratorium was imposed I aggresively pursued Verizon to begin negotiations, and the result of that pursuit is the preliminary license that is ready for public comment. I have posted the proposed license on the City website and invite public comment at the hearing, or electronically. Please send any electronic comments in through the link on the City Website. I believe that competition is a good thing in cable, and with federal regulations prohibiting municipalities from negotiating price, market mechanisms are all that are available to moderate potential price increases in the future.

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14 Responses to Cable Competition Comes to Methuen

  1. Jules Gordon says:

    Your Honor,

    I agree, we need the competition. You know how I feel about that free market thing.

    Huzzar to you.

    ( Shh….is anyone listening? This is between you and me. Urban Myth has it that when the fiber optic cable goes into a house, the technician removes the copper cable making it more costly for the customer to return to the previous provider. It’s only a rumor, but check it, OK?)

    Jules.

    Like

  2. Bill Manzi says:

    Jules,
    I do believe that copper is removed and fiber installed (although I admit to not being an expert)but that should not impact any decision on providers. Comcast uses a different delivery method for cable, and should you choose to change phone service I do not believe that you would be impacted in any way. (Alternative phone providers lease Verizon lines). Based on my understanding today I think the urban myth is just hokum.
    Bill

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  3. John Shepherd says:

    I want the city of Methuen to provde as much benefit to it’s citizens as possible, and that includes cable competition. We are getting high service fees because there is not enough competition.

    Like

  4. Bill Manzi says:

    I have signed the Verizon License, and with 44 percent of Methuen already wired the era of cable competition is now upon us in Methuen. I will be posting shortly the areas already wired.

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  5. Dear Major Manzi,
    First of all thank you and the members of the Cable Advisory Board for negotiating with VZ and bringing Cable Competition to Methuen!
    Even though currently I don’t get the service, I am already enjoying some of the benefits because Comcast is offering coupons, free on-demand movies etc…
    However, to me 44% FiOS availability means that 66% of Methuen don’t get the service (I am in the 66%)… Availability can be checked on the VZ website (both by address or by TN), so instead of publishing available streets, I think it would make sense to ask Verizon to publish their FiOS expansion plan in Methuen to benefit the 66% of us without the service.
    I am concerned about FiOS availability because I live in a fairly ‘remote’ area of the town (Riverview Blvd – near the Prides Crossing condos)… so I don’t think VZ will expand their FiOS network in my area ‘till they can get into the larger, more profitable neighboring Haverhill area.
    Sincerely,
    Attila

    Like

  6. Bill Manzi says:

    Thank you for that post. The terms of the Verizon license require a total buildout of Methuen within a prescribed period. The City of Methuen should be totally built out in three years. I will inquire about the fiber optic availability in your area and let you know, if possible, what that timeframe is.

    Like

  7. Thank you Sir, your efforts will be greatly appreciated!
    I just hope that VZ has and will provide FiOS expansion plans.

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  8. Louis Garcia says:

    Question: Does this license also pemit Verizon to offer High Speed Internet through the FiOS Fiber Optic line or only Cable TV?

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  9. Bill Manzi says:

    Yes Louis this license will allow the FIOS high speed internet as well as well as video.

    Like

  10. Joe Corcoran says:

    Mayor Manzi,

    I live in the east end, and have seen Verizon putting their beige boxes on the telephone poles and stringing the fiber optic cable. But friends of mine in other communities tell me that the last to be wired are areas where all the wires are underground. Most of Methuens newer subdivisions have underground wiring. Do you know if we will be the last to be wired.

    Thank you.

    Like

  11. Bill Manzi says:

    Joe,
    I am not sure if the underground wiring has any impact on timing. I will inquire and post back soon.

    Bill

    Like

  12. Attila Galuska says:

    Major Manzi,
    Just wondering if Verizon replied to your inquiries about FiOS availability/expansion in Methuen?
    I contacted them but couldn’t get any helpful info…
    Thank you,
    Attila

    Like

  13. Martin Andrews says:

    will will Methuen Residents have a option to purchase separate packages regarding services or will they be offering a bundled package, also will Methuen residents still be able to keep Comcast cable services along with Verizon services?

    Like

  14. Bill Manzi says:

    I believe separate packages will be available from Verizon. On that basis I do not see any reason why you could not keep Comcast cable with other services, be it Verizon or others.

    Bill

    Like

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