Charter Spectrum plans legal battle to stop New York’s decision to remove them

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ALBANY, NY (WROC) – Despite the Public Service Commission starting the process to remove the cable provider from New York last week, Charter Spectrum leaders think they will be able to resolve issues with the state.

In a statement released Wednesday, the company said it has pulled certain ads as part of “an effort to help bring about a resolution of outstanding disputed matters with the Public Service Commission of New York.”

The company added, “We look forward to resolving all matters currently disputed with the PSC in the not too distant future.”

Last week, the PSC cited false advertisements by Charter, in which the company claimed it was meeting its commitments to New York, among the reasons the company was being kicked out. The commission also said the company had repeatedly failed to hit expansion benchmarks required under the state’s approval of its merger with Time Warner.

In a conference call on Tuesday, Charter leaders said they were preparing to fight the decision, saying they believe they have a strong defense.

Charter CEO Thomas Rutledge told investors, “We believe we’re in compliance with the plain reading and the build-out requirements that the state imposed on us in merger conditions and we have a very strong legal case and ability to defend ourselves. And it could play out over a lengthy period of time if required.”

Rutledge also said he believed labor disputes with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers had played a political role in New York’s decision.

On the political side, earlier this week, Governor Cuomo faced criticism after taking a shot at Charter when a reporter from New York 1, a media station in New York City owned by Charter, asked him a tough question on a campaign donation that was under scrutiny.

After addressing the question, Cuomo reportedly told the reporter, “Speaking of fraud, Charter Spectrum has been executing fraud on the people of this state.”

Last week, the Public Service Commission said Charter had 60 days to work on an “orderly” transition to a new provider.

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