State of New York Playing Hardball on Comcast-Time Warner Cable Merger

Aug 29, 2014  •  Post A Comment

New York state regulators are flexing their muscle in the proposed merger of Comcast and Time Warner Cable, with the state threatening to obstruct the deal unless the companies agree to expensive concessions, reports Bloomberg.

“While the U.S. government is reviewing the alliance on antitrust grounds, states have authority over cable service on their soil. New York regulators have additional power due to a state law passed this year that requires cable mergers to benefit the public,” the story reports.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who has received more than $200,000 in campaign contributions from the two companies, hasn’t taken a stance on the merger. If the state rejects the acquisition, the companies could have to scrap their plans to merge, the story adds.

On Oct. 2, the New York State Public Service Commission will vote, with the group reportedly asking for commissions that would cost Comcast $300 million. That includes stipulations such as the post-merger company maintaining jobs in New York, providing faster broadband and better customer service, expanding in rural areas, and providing easier access to broadband service for low-income families, the piece reports.

Five of 12 states that are reviewing the deal haven’t finished their work. Los Angeles is also reviewing the merger, the story adds.

“We look forward to working with the mayors of New York and Los Angeles as the regulatory review process proceeds, and with the state commissions who have the jurisdiction for review in both California and New York,” a Comcast spokeswoman said.


Your Comment

Email (will not be published)