City fed up with cable company

Published On: Oct 24 2012 04:49:25 PM CDT
Updated On: Oct 24 2012 06:23:06 PM CDT

Oct. 24, 2012: The city of Houston takes unprecedented action against a cable company. Amy Davis reports.

HOUSTON -

Distorted pictures, marathon wait times to speak to customer service and unexpected price increases -- dealing with a cable company can be a pain. But it's not just customers complaining about a local cable provider. The City of Houston is also fed up with Wave Vision.

Customer Dan Herrick e-mailed consumer expert Amy Davis to let her know he signed up with Wave Vision for $119 a month. He said his bill increased every month after that until he was paying $212 just for basic cable.

Davis called Wave Vision; but no one returned her call. The City of Houston says the company has been avoiding its calls too.

"They've refused to work with us, and they've essentially forced us to the step which we are now which is to take unprecedented action and recommend that their franchise be revoked," explained Chris Newport of the City of Houston Regulatory Services.

Newport says Wave Vision owes the city $809,789.91.

All cable companies must pay the city a franchise fee in order to use the public right of way for cable lines and equipment.

Newport says Wave Vision is still collecting the fee from its customers, like Herrick, but not passing it on to the city.

If Wave Vision's license is revoked, it will no longer be allowed to provide cable service. The final step in the process is a public hearing at City Hall on Oct. 31 during the regular City Council meeting. If no one from Wave Vision shows up and makes arrangements to pay the bills, the council will vote for or against revoking the license.

This doesn't mean you should stop paying your bill, but if you have a choice of who you use for cable, you might start looking for a back-up.

If you would like to lodge a complaint against Wave Vision with the city, call 311 or go to http://hfdapp.houstontx.gov/311/index.php.

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