Shelburne to Comcast: Show us the maps

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    Cables connecting phone, cable and Internet service come out of a wall connector in this photograph taken last year. The Baker administration continues its review of plans and money for the "last mile" broadband effort. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Recorder Staff
Published: 9/23/2016 9:26:50 PM

SHELBURNE — What do Comcast Cable TV subscribers want? More responses to telephone inquiries and clarification on where there is — and isn’t — cable television services in this rural town.

Mostly, everyone attending a Comcast evaluation hearing this week want high-speed broadband and hope questions about who lives within Comcast’s television coverage area will go away once the town has full broadband coverage, in two years.

Cable Advisory Chairman Michael Duffy asked Comcast representative Eileen Leahy for better maps that indicate where cable TV service is accessible. He said at least five residents called Comcast this summer to ask what Cable TV service would cost them, but did not get responses from the company. Meanwhile, Larry Flaccus, who lives on Route 2, said he repeatedly gets advertising mail inviting him to sign up for service in a region that lacks the service.

Duffy said Comcast’s sales teams “don’t really know where cable is available.”

Leahy said she would check into these issues and come back to the advisory committee to discuss them. She said some of the confusion may be attributed to ZIP code confusion, because some Shelburne households show up as being in Charlemont — where there is no Comcast service.

“I would love to get an accurate count of subscribers and the complaint data,” said Duffy. “Two thousand calls, and we’re not getting (any) complaints? Seems inaccurate.”

“I would like to think we’re doing a heck of a job, but I guess that isn’t it, from what I’m hearing,” Leahy replied.

Town officials also wanted clear maps that show the 96 percent of homes that will be getting the cable network, as agreed upon by Comcast and the Massachusetts Broadband Institute. The town may propose a town meeting warrant article asking for money to build out the last 4 percent of unserved homes, so that everyone in town will eventually have broadband access.


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