In this press statement, Public Service Commission regulators said that Spectrum - the largest cable provider in ny - failed to comply with several conditions mandated when the state approved Charter's merger with Time Warner Cable, Inc.in 2016.
"Charter's repeated failures to serve New Yorkers and honor its commitments are well documented and are only getting worse", PSC Chair John Rhodes said".
The commission's approval of the merger in January 2016 was contingent on Charter bringing broadband service to 36,250 new addresses per year for four years. "Charter must ensure no interruption in service is experienced by customers, and, in the event that Charter does not do so, the Commission will take further steps, including seeking injunctive relief in Supreme Court in order to protect NY consumers". The Commission also requires $3 million in penalties from the company. But as we've previously written, state officials say that Charter is trying to count locations that it was already required to serve as part of franchise agreements toward its merger commitments.
Regulators in NY are reneging on their approval of Charter Communications acquisition of Time Warner Cable, alleging the cable provider broke its promise to deliver high-speed broadband to rural customers.
Charter, which does business as Spectrum cable in NY, has been locked in a battle with Gov. Andrew Cuomo's administration over the rollout of high-speed internet access in rural areas of the state.
It's rare to see a state try to undo a merger this way and prohibit a company from operating (in its current form) in the state, but NY is clearly unhappy with Charter's actions in the wake of this merger, and displeased enough that they're moving beyond fines to merger revocation.
The company is the major cable, Internet and phone service provider for two million subscribers in Rochester, Buffalo, Syracuse, Albany, Manhattan, Staten Island, Queens, and parts of Brooklyn.
The ruling shouldn't affect cable service to the company's NY customers.
"In the weeks leading up to an election, rhetoric often becomes politically charged", Charter said in its statement.
Charter has 30 days to contest the order, and the company said it plans to fight the decision.
A spokesman for Charter, which provides services under the Spectrum brand, said the company has extended its broadband network to more than 86,000 homes and businesses since the merger.
The Public Service Commission, however, said in its prepared statement that Charter "has - through word and deed - made clear that it has no intention of providing the public benefits upon which the commission's earlier approval was conditioned".