NEWTOWN AREA TELECOMMUNICATIONS ADVISORY COMMITTEE

MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF OCTOBER 6, 2009

 

Members present were James Manahan, Chairman and Barbara Jankowski, Member Representing Newtown Township; John Leonard, Vice-Chairman/Treasurer; Patrick Foster, Member and Gerard O’Malley, Liaison Representing Newtown Borough. Not present were Robert Hafner, Member and Jerry Schenkman, Liaison Representing Newtown Township

Also present were Brian Jeter representing Comcast Cable Communications, Inc. and John Strasser representing Verizon.

CALL TO ORDER:

Chairman James Manahan called the meeting to order at 7:14 P.M.

MINUTES OF JUNE 2, 2009:

Barbara Jankowski made a motion to approve the minutes of June 2, 2009. The motion was seconded by Patrick Foster and passed unanimously (4-0).

COMCAST REPORT:

Brian Jeter updated the members with regards to the digital migration and reported that Bucks was the first county to make the change. He advised that the transition is complete and that qualifying customers would received more HD channels, on demand programming and faster internet speeds. He discussed the three (3) digital boxes available and reported that the channel cut was done in two (2) phases. He reported on the upcoming launch of 20 – 30 HD channels by the end of 2009 or beginning of 2010. He discussed the Township’s/Borough’s courtesy facilities being equipped with the new Comcast equipment.

The members discussed the complaint regarding a senior living in Friends Village. Brian Jeter advised that Comcast has made several attempts to reach the customer and has been unsuccessful. He advised that he would continue trying to follow up with the customer and update the Committee via email. Barbara Jankowski commented with regards to retirement facilities and questioned how they are contracted. Brian Jeter reported that the contract varies with the different retirement facilities and advised that he would research how the agreement with Friends Village is written. He also reported on Comcast’s privacy policy.

(Gerard O’Malley arrived.)

Gerard O’Malley thanked Comcast for installing cable service in the Borough Police Station.

The members thanked Brian Jeter for his time.

VERIZON REPORT:

John Strasser reported that Stephanie Beavers has retired and that he would be the Committee’s contact at Verizon.

John Strasser updated the members on the correspondence that Verizon has sent to the Borough and Township with regards to price increases. He advised that customers with just the television service that signed up in 2007/2008 would be effected. The price increase went into effect October 1, 2009. He reported on updates to the Fios widget feature.

Barbara Jankowski questioned if Verizon would be broadcasting the Flyers games. John Strasser advised that the games would be broadcast, except if on CN8, those games would not be shown.

The members thanked John Strasser for his time.

OLD BUSINESS:

NEW BUSINESS:

Set meeting dates for 2010

The members discussed setting the meeting dates for 2010 and agreed that the meeting schedule would be as follows:

  • January 5, 2010
  • April 6, 2010
  • June 1, 2010
  • October 5, 2010

The meeting time would remain 7 P.M. and the meeting location would remain at the Newtown Borough Fire Hall.

OTHER BUSINESS/MEMBER COMMENTS:

Barbara Jankowski advised that she would not be present at the meeting on January 5, 2010.

The members discussed the future of the Committee. The Recording Secretary advised the members that most of their terms expire at the end of 2009 and that if they were interested in being re-appointed to contact the Township/Borough. James Manahan advised that he would discuss the Committee’s future with Jerry Schenkman. Gerard O’Malley suggested that the Committee continue to meet at least twice a year.

ADJOURNMENT:

The meeting adjourned at 7:43 P.M.

The next meeting is scheduled for January 5, 2010. The meeting will begin at 7:00 P.M., in the Newtown Borough Fire Hall located at 14 Liberty Street.

 

Respectfully Submitted:

 

Christy Holley, Recording Secretary