Verizon Statement on Cable-Franchising Bill: California Consumers Win as Gov. Schwarzenegger Signs Video Franchise Reform Legislation

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. - Calif. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger today signed into law a statewide cable-franchising bill that received overwhelming bipartisan support in the state Legislature. The law, authored by Assembly Speaker Fabian Núñez and Assembly Utilities and Commerce Committee Chairman Lloyd Levine, streamlines the process for companies to obtain video franchises and opens the cable TV market to new competitors.

Verizon, connecting the nation's largest fiber-optic network directly to customers' homes, is building its all-fiber-optic network in many of the wireline telephone areas it serves in California. The 100-percent fiber-optic network is the technological platform from which customers receive Verizon's crystal-clear FiOS TV, ultra-fast FiOS Internet Service and reliable FiOS phone service.

The following statement should be attributed to Verizon West Region President Tim McCallion:

"Gov. Schwarzenegger's signing of the Digital Infrastructure and Cable Competition Act is a huge victory for California's consumers.  Under this law, California sets a new standard for accelerating cable-TV competition, and customers can expect new choices, greater value and improved service in terms of video providers.

"This landmark legislation unlocks the vast potential of Verizon's all-fiber network and enables us to more rapidly offer a new alternative to cable - FiOS TV - in dozens of communities where we have already built our 100-percent fiber-optic network.  The new law also provides the certainty for Verizon to commit hundreds of millions of dollars in additional investment to accelerate fiber deployment in California, creating hundreds of new jobs and stimulating our state's economy.

"Customer acceptance of Verizon's FiOS services continues to grow at a record pace because we have established best-in-class standards for TV picture quality, programming choice, broadband speeds and customer service."

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), a 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 55 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.  Based in New York, Verizon has a diverse workforce of more than 252,000 and generates annual consolidated operating revenues of approximately $90 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.