And it appears Charter has now at least tacitly admitted they were double-dipping on their new customer figures (by counting new customers in areas they were already serving, outside the merger agreement) because they walked back that 86000 figure this week:Charter agreed to a fine and a revised buildout schedule last year after missing a deadline to pass 36,250 homes and businesses within one year of the merger approval. The company says it has met subsequent deadlines, but the PSC says it hasn't.
Specifically, a PSC audit found that 14,000 homes and businesses claimed by Charter as new construction were ineligible. For example, Charter's "new" broadband deployments in New York City included addresses that the company was already required to serve as part of the franchise agreements, the commission said in March.
Charter spokesman Andrew Russell once again defended the company and its Spectrum service from criticism from the PSC and Rhodes, who have claimed that many of the additional lines that it built in the state are duplicates or are in areas of the state not covered under the agreement.
"The fact is that Spectrum has built out our broadband network to more than 61,000 unserved or underserved homes since the merger," Russell said. "We find it baffling that the PSC thinks that some New Yorkers count and others don't, given their belief that access to broadband is essential for economic development and social equity."