Policy

Fla. City OKs Verizon Franchise

5/18/2005 6:07 AM Eastern

Verizon Communications has negotiated its sixth competitive cable franchise, a pact with the city of Temple Terrace, Fla.

The 23,000-population town, northeast of Tampa in Hillsborough County, became the first in Florida to approve the delivery of cable service from its dominant telephone provider. Verizon will compete there against Bright House Networks.

In a prepared statement, city manager Kim Leinbach said officials were pleased to have concluded franchise negotiations with the telephone giant, adding that citizens will benefit from additional choices in broadband-service providers.

The 15-year franchise calls for cable service to be provided to all of Temple Terrace's residents. Verizon will provide the city with a $35,000 grant; other financial support; capability for educational and government-access channels; support for a future institutional network for schools, libraries and other public facilities; and free government-office connections.

Verizon was previously franchised in Beaumont, Calif., and Keller, Wylie, Sachse and Westlake, all in Texas.

The company plans to launch video service first in Keller sometime this year.

September