November 6, 2019 Minutes
Peaches Quinn – (New Haven) – Acting Chair
George Alexander – (Hamden) – Treasurer
Laurel Coleman – (Hamden) – Advisor
Yvonne Manning-Jones – (New Haven ) – Advisor
Anthony Cardo – (Hamden) Advisor
Johnes Ruta – (New Haven) – Acting Secretary
Meeting convened at 6:08 pm.
- Attendance: CTV is requested to attend the next meeting.
a.Comcast put Turner Classic Movies (TCM) into a Sports & Entertainment Package for an
additional charge of $9.99 per month. CTAC members are concerned about the Comcast
change and their motive for putting TCM into an a’ la carte subscription package.
The prediction that George Alexander brought up several years ago in a CTAC meeting,
that “cable television will go away in the future,” is brought up by Johnes, and discussed
by the council. CTAC members are “advisors” to franchises, and not decision makers.
At the previous meeting, Sharon indicated that she would provide viewer measurement data
that would backup her assertion that TCM viewership is limited to 2% of cable customers
and at an average duration averaging less than 2 minutes. This measurement data has not
yet been provided. CTAC members Laurel Coleman and Johnes Ruta have questions
regarding this issue. Laurel also asks that the October CTAC Minutes also reflect that
her CTAC membership was renewed by the Hamden Mayor’s Office.
CTAC question points on Comcast issues:
* Technical complexities of Comcast X1 operating system poses difficulties to many elderly
* Some Comcast channels are being dropped to the next lower subscription level.
* “Comcast Flex” option. CTAC wish to have documentation as to which channels are
available on this subscription level.
* Questions arise as to financial burden of rising subscription costs to customers.
CTAC members report that their Comcast subscription prices vary according to the different
packages and premium channels subscribed to. Peaches Quinn and Yvonne Manning-Jones
state that they consider this a Comcast “marketing strategy: for the retention of customers.
Peaches makes a Motion to defer acceptance of the October Minutes until the next meeting
until we can review all the text, including Johnes’ recording of members’ comments at that
meeting as characterized by the Comcast representative as member’s “opinions”, especially
of those of Johnes Ruta. The Comcast representative objected in writing that inclusion of
these “opinions” in CTAC Minute is “inappropriate” and not in accordance with Roberts
Rules of Order. However, Johnes notes that as a Comcast subscriber himself, he has the
right,according to CTAC By-Laws (as quoted in the Oct Minutes) to publicly criticize
Comcast policies. Johnes questions whether Comcast has the prerogative to edit CTAC
Minutes other than entries regarding the Comcast representative’s own statements ?
Johnes Ruta seconds Peaches Quinn’s Motion to defer. Vote is unanimous.
Peaches Quinn makes a Motion to readdress questions, as follows:
(1) “Is the Turner Classic Movies channel included in the Comcast Flex plan ?”
(2) Peaches Motion question to the Comcast representative: “Please provide and explain
the Comcast viewership measurement methodology, as previously promised to CTAC.”
(3) Peaches requests all CTAC members to review the October Minutes for their advisory
Johnes Ruta notes that the online internet channel “WatchTCM” is only available by the
log-on with a Comcast subscription account.
George Alexander comments that the Comcast reports should be attached as separate documents
with the distribution of the monthly CTAC Minutes, rather than embedded in the Minutes
document which makes printouts of the Minutes for meetings attendance to be cumbersome.
Johnes agrees to follow George’s recommendation.
Peaches makes a Motion that Comcast be requested to provide internet links to their report
pages. Anthony second this Motion. Vote unanimous.
George Alexander comments that a memo that he has received, distributed by the Connecticut
Department of Energy & Environmental Protection Bureau of Energy and Technology contains
a Press Release addressed to the Executive secretary of PURA from Locke Lord (a Comcast
attorney). This P/R contains a paragraph stating that effective December 10th, 2019 Comcast
will no longer carry Starz Edge, Starz in Black, Starz Comedy, Starz Cinema, and Starz Kids &
Family. Also effective December 10th, Comcast will add the Epix channel, and Starz will no
longer be available. Also effective December 10th, Comcast will no longer carry RetroPlex,
IndiePlex, Encore Classic, Encore Suspense, Encore Family, and Encore Espanol.
Peaches Quinn makes a Motion that CTAC writes to Comcast with our concerns regarding
their elimination of channels, and Comcast’s reasons for this. Laurel Coleman seconds this
Motion. Vote is unanimous.
4. Attendance – addendum: Peaches states that Tad Weinstein will not be available
for the December holiday dinner as scheduled. After members’ discussion, it is agreed
to reschedule this to Thursday, January 2nd.. Sharon Codeanne, Joe Schofield, and
Jennifer Sacco will also be invited.
Funds are budgeted for New Haven senior day centers, but it is determined that there is no
New Haven Senior Day Center. Discussion ensues to determine where to donate funds to
instead. Shall we open up a category for possible recipients, as funds must be donated before
the end of the calendar year 2019.
Laurel Coleman makes a Motion to open up other categories of social services for possible
donations . An agency must be Not-for-Profit. Yvonne Manning-Jonees seconds this Mothion.
Vote is unanimous.
Next meeting Wednesday, December 4, 2019 at 5:30PM.
Meeting adjourned: 7:30 PM.
November 6th, 2019 Minutes respectfully submitted by Johnes Ruta (New Haven)
Acting Secretary. November 20th, 2019.