Frontier says it will enable 100,000 more Connecticut homes with U-verse

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Frontier Communications officials told Connecticut utility regulators that if they approve the pending acquisition of AT&T's (NYSE: T) operations, the company would extend U-verse service initially to an additional 100,000 customers, reports the New Haven Register.

Ken Arndt, president of Frontier's eastern region, said that the service expansion would take place in cities and towns that already have U-verse subscribers and others where it is not available today.

If the deal is approved by Connecticut's Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) and the FCC, Frontier does not plan to alter the current U-verse TV lineup.

The telco hopes to complete the deal by Oct. 1, which Arndt said "will give us three months of running the company before the next budget cycle starts."

Frontier also allayed PURA commissioners' concerns about retaining the current employment levels in the state.

The service provider overcame a major hurdle when it finalized a new labor contract with the Communications Workers of America District 1 (CWA) union that represents employees in the Connecticut region. Part of that agreement includes the addition of 85 new union jobs, 75 of which will be added six months after the deal wraps.

Initially, the CWA had been against the deal, claiming in a FCC filing that Frontier had not provided enough information to the regulator to review it. One of the key issues was how Frontier would maintain and expand AT&T's U-verse broadband and video services.

Besides job levels, PURA officials questioned if Frontier had the financial wherewithal to run the operations it is buying from AT&T. Maggie Wilderotter, Frontier's CEO, told Forbes last December that integrating the AT&T assets will be far easier than $8.6 million worth of access lines Frontier bought from Verizon (NYSE: VZ) in 14 states in 2010.

For more:
- New Haven Register has this article

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