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Another 11 Months to Finish Installation : United Cable Wins New Extension

Times Staff Writer

United Cable Television of Los Angeles won the backing Tuesday of a City Council committee to get another 11 months--until June 30, 1988--to complete installation of the East San Fernando Valley cable TV system.

The Industry and Economic Development Committee approved the company’s request and sent it to the full council on the recommendation of the city Department of Telecommunications, which regulates cable TV operations.

Susan Herman, general manager of the department, said she believes United can meet the new schedule and recommended that it be approved to give residents a “reasonable expectation” of when they can get cable service.

United has installed about 275 miles of the 1,140-mile system and has begun service to about 5,000 of the 176,000 homes in the East Valley, according to Margaret Durborow, the company’s marketing director. The first homes to receive service are in Pacoima, Mission Hills, Sylmar and Arleta, communities close to the company’s transmission facility, which is on Los Angeles Unified School District property at San Fernando High School.

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Receives 2 Extensions

The company originally was to complete installation of the system last December. It received two extensions that pushed the completion date back until July 31, 1987.

Without the latest extension requested, United would face thousands of dollars in fines in addition to those imposed earlier, with the fines increasing each day it fails to meet the deadlines previously imposed by the council for completing segments of the system.

The company has appealed a $186,200 fine for failing to have 270 miles of cable installed by Jan. 31. The committee Tuesday delayed a decision on the appeal after the city attorney raised legal questions about the council’s authority to waive any fines under the existing cable franchise ordinance.

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United officials are confident they can meet the new schedule because of arrangements with the city Department of Water and Power. United officials have blamed DWP for failing to give quicker approval for the stringing of cable on utility poles.


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