Frederick Keys games on Prestige Cable likely

November 01, 1992|By Amy L. Miller | Amy L. Miller,Staff Writer

A proposed sale of assets between Prestige Cable TV Inc. and Frederick Cablevision Inc. may give Carroll residents an opportunity to see Frederick Keys games on television.

The proposal came late Wednesday night at a meeting of Mount Airy's cable committee, during a discussion of Prestige selling its cables, amplifiers and other equipment in the town to Frederick Cablevision.

The two companies began negotiating about three weeks ago when the Frederick company began laying cable under the Mount Airy franchise it received in July. Mount Airy officials did not hear of the proposal until last Friday.

"My understanding is that [Prestige] has three or four local access channels and we have equally as many on our system," said Robert Cole, vice president and general manager of Frederick Cablevision.

"We are capable of picking up various parts of their programming to provide to customers in Mount Airy, and they can pick up some of our system and take it back to Westminster for their broadcasts," he said. "But we wouldn't be sharing 100 percent of our programming."

Prestige seemed most interested in Frederick's local coverage of the Frederick Keys games, Mr. Cole said.

The Keys are a minor league farm team for the Orioles.

The cable companies will be among the first in the state to sharprogramming, he said.

As for Prestige selling its assets, Mr. Cole said the discussion began when Frederick Cablevision contacted the Carroll company about the location of its wires.

"We began to show that we were serious about building in Mount Airy," he said. "I'm not sure they thought we were serious until that point. We have a franchise in Mount Airy, and we intend on honoring it."

Mr. Cole would not reveal specifics about the proposal.

"Basically, they're willing to sell and we're willing to buy," he said. "We've worked out a price that we will reimburse them for."

However, Mount Airy's cable committee has recommended that the town council have a public hearing on the matter before voting on whether to approve the sale. The council originally asked Frederick to serve Mount Airy because they wanted cable competition.

"The people asked for a choice, not one cable company replacing another," said council President Delaine Hobbs. "That's why I think there should be a public hearing."

Council members will set a date for the public hearing at Monday's meeting.

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