Six years later, still no cable for parts of Milan

Cablevision’s efforts to provide the town of Milan with access to its cable and high speed Internet is still ongoing, despite hurricane delays over the past two years.

According to Supervisor Bill Gallagher, Cablevision entered into a franchise agreement with the town late in 2006 or early 2007, before he was supervisor. Cablevision paid the town a franchise fee at the beginning of the contract and continues to pay a yearly fee.

The project quickly became complicated when it was discovered that the majority of the telephone poles in Milan were not tall enough to accommodate the mandatory amount of separation between electrical, telephone and cable lines.

So Cablevision entered into a contract with Central Hudson to install taller poles. After Central Hudson crews replace the poles, Cablevision crews string the cable wire. Both phases of the project are on-going.

The project has had other setbacks. Local damage from Hurricane Irene caused delays when crews from Central Hudson and Cablevision were required to work elsewhere to restore service. This year, damage from Hurricane Sandy called crews away again to address areas of higher need and caused at least another two months’ delay.

According to Gallagher, Cablevision’s most recent estimates say the part of Milan on the eastern side of the Taconic Parkway will be completed in the spring. And certain areas of the southwest section of the town have been completed, he added. But the whole project may not be completed for another two years.

As sections of Milan become cable-ready, potential customers are then contacted by Cablevision with an offer to purchase cable, high speed Internet, and phone service through Cablevision’s Optimum program.

According to Gallagher, installing cable at each house can add another layer of complexity, as some houses require special work to connect to the service, including buried cable lines.

Calls to Cablevision were not returned by press time.

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