Many residents have contacted my office inquiring about Verizon FIOS cable television and Internet availability in the Town.
FIOS Internet service is a telecommunications service. Some residents are currently able to subscribe to Verizon FIOS Internet now. Where and when the service is made available is solely at the discretion of Verizon.
Cable television service, however, is regulated by the New York State Public Service Commission. In order to have cable television available in Somers, Verizon must enter into a franchise agreement with the Town to complete a build-out of the service.
Negotiations for a cable franchise agreement between Verizon and the Town were held in 2009. Near the end of 2009, Verizon informed the Town that it was “pausing” negotiations with the Town and focusing on completing its build elsewhere. Since then, I have on numerous occasions requested Verizon to resume negotiation of a franchise agreement with Somers. To date, Verizon has maintained its former position of seeking no new franchise.
Verizon’s decision not to move forward with its application for a franchise agreement with Somers was a financial one made at the corporate level. We were advised by their government affairs office that Verizon has paused all new franchise agreement applications in New York State and is concentrating the Company’s resources towards building out service in communities with existing agreements.
I am committed to bringing choice and competitive pricing to Somers consumers. I will continue to closely monitor this situation with the hope of encouraging Verizon to enter a franchise agreement with the Town of Somers.