Cable Advisory Council
of Charter Communications

PO Box 87
Newtown, CT 06470
January 9, 2007 Minutes

P. O. Box 87
Newtown, Connecticut

~ Minutes ~

Minutes of Public Regular Meeting – Tuesday, January 9, 2006

Newtown, CT

There was a regular meeting of the Cable Advisory Council called to order at 7:02 p.m., Tuesday, January 9, 2007 by Chairman, Carmella Amodeo at the Charter Communications facility, Newtown, Connecticut.  


Carmella Amodeo (Newtown), George Linkletter (Sherman), Carl Braun (Woodbury), Kate Donahue (Trumbull), Eugene Rosen (Newtown), Carl DeVoe (New Milford), Jim Lang (Trumbull), John Bell (Kent).

From Charter: Greg Van Antwerp (community access), Brian Downes (operations), Bob Spain (Government Relations) and Paula Cecchetelli (Marketing).


No Public present.


Minutes approved (Motion by Lang, second by Rosen; 7-0 with 1 abstention).


Jill Hamilton not present.


It was requested that we move Charter to the end of the meeting.


Mail Bag:

  • Issues with customer service continue.  When the Newtown customer service center was closed there was a spike in customer service problems, things are improving and they will continue to improve according to Charter
  • We received a couple of letter expressing interest in joining the Advisory Council.  Carmella will forward them to the appropriate First Selectman for consideration.
  • Continuing discussion of programming changes.  Charter feels it is continuing to work hard to let us know about rate and programming changes but with the Advisory Council meeting only every other month it is hard to keep us in the loop completely when decisions are being made in weeks not months.
  • Charter’s goal continues to be “delighted” customers – to that end, CEO Neil Smith listens to customer calls in the evenings just about every day. He spends about 20% of his time doing that so he really has a handle on what customers are saying.
  • Discussion of ABC High Definition and Channel 12 programming requests on TrumbullNet.
  • Charter mentioned the potential for NewsChannel 3 to be created for the Western Connecticut market.


Grant Process:  Carl and Jim will finish the letter/application and look for approval via email.  At the March meeting we will put up for final approval and set a deadline.  It will then be sent to High School Principals and district Superintendents.  We will make selections at the May meeting and in July we will send the money out.

Video Festival: Jill and John not present but Jim Lang made the motion to conduct the video festival business via email (Carmella) before the next meeting. Rosen seconded, unanimous vote.


FCC franchise rules do not apply in Connecticut because the DPUC (rather than a Cable Commission) regulates cable television.


Bob Spain shared that Charter has 50,000 telephone customers, is reducing basic cable subscriber churn and the stock price is up.  Efforts are being made to bring AT&T under the purview of the DPUC so there is a level playing field in Connecticut.

Paula said ABC is still negotiating with them.  ESPNU is still not being carried.  Reel TV (like Entertainment Tonight) and Game Show Network are being added to the digital 1 package.  Customized letters are going out to subscribers with rate increases.  The Advisory Council review the template letter and made a few suggestions including that Charter needs to explain that customers with cable ready tv sets still get basic and expanded basic channels without a converter but if they want digital they have to get a digital converter for each tv they have.

Charter is staggering the rollout of their 2007 rate increases so that their call centers won’t be overwhelmed.

Greg Van Antwerp reported that an edited version of last year’s Video Festival will be on Channel 21 on January 29 and February 1.  Channel 21 is now operating on a 9-day advance schedule.  Bob Spain is asking Greg to do more outreach to schools than ever before.  Carl DeVoe suggested starting a Channel 17 User’s Group.  The idea was embraced by all.  Kate and Jim suggested two contacts in the Trumbull district (Shawn Tait and Debbie Owne).


The meeting was unanimously adjourned at: 9:40 PM.  Respectfully submitted by:  Kate Donahue, Secretary.

Text Box: NEXT MEETING:  March 13, 2007 at Charter Communications offices in Newtown at 7:00 PM.  



Text Box: ~ 2007 Meeting Dates ~
Tuesday, January 9, 2007
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Tuesday, May 8, 2007
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Tuesday, November 13, 2007







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