Eastchester, N.Y., Consumers One Step Closer to Real Choice for Cable TV

NEW YORK - The Westchester County town of Eastchester is bringing its residents a major step closer to having a new choice for their cable television services, thanks to a unanimous vote by the Town Board to award a video franchise to Verizon for its FiOS TV service.

"This is great news for the residents of Eastchester, who now have more choice for their video entertainment," said Monica Azare, Verizon senior vice president for New York and Connecticut.  "Choice and competition drives innovation, value and service quality, and we will continue to compete for New York consumers' communications, broadband and video business with our FiOS services.

"We look forward to similarly successful negotiations with other towns and villages throughout the state," said Azare.

The Eastchester Town Board voted on Nov. 21 to approve a franchise for Verizon. The town is the sixth Westchester County community - and the 24th in the state - to grant a cable franchise to Verizon, following the Town of Greenburgh and the villages of Irvington, Ardsley, Dobbs Ferry and Tarrytown.  In addition, Verizon has been awarded video franchises by the Rockland County communities of Nyack, South Nyack, Upper Nyack, Grandview-on-Hudson and Clarkstown, and on Long Island in the villages of Massapequa Park, Cedarhurst, Laurel Hollow, Lynbrook, Mineola, East Rockaway, Farmingdale, Valley Stream and Freeport, and the towns of Huntington, Smithtown, Hempstead and Oyster Bay.

Eastchester joins a growing list of New York communities that are paving the way for competition and choice in the television market.  As with all local franchise approvals in New York, the agreement between Eastchester and Verizon is subject to review by the New York State Public Service Commission.

"The Town Board has been a leader in many areas of government, and establishing cable television competition was no different," said Anthony S. Colavita, Eastchester town supervisor.  "We were eager to provide a competitive market for cable television for the benefit of all of our residents.  Rates decrease and service increases when business have to compete against each other."

Verizon, which launched FiOS TV in September 2005 in Keller, Texas, currently offers the service in parts of California, Florida, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Texas and Virginia.  The company has video franchises covering approximately 3.6 million households in nine states and more than 200 franchise areas.  As the fiber network is fully deployed in franchise areas, Verizon will provide consumers with the opportunity to choose FiOS TV.

Verizon's FiOS TV service is designed to be a formidable competitor to cable and satellite, offering a broad collection of all-digital programming, more than 20 high-definition channels, video on demand and more.  It is delivered over Verizon's fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP) network, which has industry-leading quality and reliability.  Verizon is the first company to offer such a communications network, connecting homes and businesses directly to fiber optics on a widespread scale.  Only Verizon's FTTP network has earned the certification of the independent Fiber to the Home Council for providing fiber all the way to customers' homes and businesses.

Verizon's fiber network delivers amazingly sharp pictures and sound, and has the capacity to transmit a wide array of high-definition programming that is so clear and intense it seems to leap from the TV screen.  In addition to FiOS TV, Verizon's fiber network also allows the company to offer consumers and businesses high-speed FiOS Internet service at download speeds of up to 50 Mbps (megabits per second) and upload speeds of up to 10 Mbps.*  FiOS Internet Service is currently available in many New York communities.

* NOTE: actual (throughput) speeds will vary.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), a New York-based Dow 30 company, is a leader in delivering broadband and other wireline and wireless communication innovations to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers.  Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving nearly 57 million customers nationwide.  Verizon Business operates one of the most expansive wholly-owned global IP networks.  Verizon Telecom is deploying the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network to deliver the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services to customers.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.