New York governor Andrew Cuomo’s administration moved to ban Charter Communications from the state on July 27 and have the Internet, television and phone company give its business to another operator, reports the New York Times.
According to the state’s Public Service Commission, Charter did not comply with the terms of its 2016 merger with Time Warner Cable. The agreement said New York would allow Charter to acquire Time Warner, if the company agreed to enhance or expand its broadband services in less populated areas. The merger would have made Charter the second largest cable operator in the U.S., but the commissioners voted to revoke the approval. Without the approval, Charter effectively can not continue to operate.
Charter now has to file a plan within 60 days to find a replacement provider without disrupting service, per the commission’s orders. The commission also asked the New York’s State Supreme Court to make Charter pay additional fines.
Charter stopping operations isn’t likely to happen in the near future however. The company plans to challenge the commission’s order, according to The Times.
The Public Services’ Commission is not the first time it’s challenged Charter, which operates under the Spectrum name. Governor Cuomo has accused the company of not keeping its promises to increase its broadband service to New York’s rural areas. “Some of these large corporations think they can get away with murder, right?” Cuomo said at another news conference after the decision. “Just because you’re a big corporation doesn’t mean you can come into this state and bully the consumers of this state. It’s not going to happen. ”The commission invoked language of morality in its decision and stated in light of Charter’s “egregious” and “wholly deficient” performance, it could “no longer in good faith and conscience” allow it to continue to operate in New York.
Spectrum officials believe the move might have been politically motivated as Election Day is a few months away. Recently Governor Cuomo has spoken out against the company more often, as it has worked to dismiss the governor’s charges of malfeasance and quell a worker’s strike that’s lasted more than a year.
“In the weeks leading up to an election, rhetoric often becomes politically charged,” the company said in a statement. “But the fact is that Spectrum has extended the reach of our advanced broadband network to more than 86,000 New York homes and businesses since our merger agreement.”