Broadband Cable Association of Pennsylvania


August 28, 2012

Time Warner Cable Inc. will expand fiber-optic lines to businesses in New York, a move that boosts Internet speeds as much as 20 times and provides an East Coast counterpoint to Google Inc.'s ultrafast network in Kansas City.

The second-largest U.S. cable company is spending $25 million this year to expand fiber networks in the boroughs of Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens and Staten Island. Time Warner Cable will announce the investment today at the Brooklyn Navy Yard. "We're making the investment to expand into areas much more aggressively than we ever have before," Ken Fitzpatrick, president of business services for Time Warner Cable's East region, said in an interview. "We're positioning New York City as a much more tech-savvy place to work." The company faces a threat from Google more than 1,000 miles away in Kansas City, where the Internet-search giant is building a fiber-optic network as a test project. Time Warner Cable is the main broadband provider for the area, which spans parts of Missouri and Kansas. While Google's network will be available to both companies and households, Time Warner Cable's New York fiber network is focused on businesses.

Time Warner Cable is designing its fiber-optic network to provide speed of 1,000 megabytes per second. The company recently completed installation to all small businesses in the Empire State Building and is extending its network to locations in Midtown, the Flatiron area and the Financial District. Time Warner Cable's Business Class service offers high- speed Internet to about 450,000 small-business customers. The New York-based company's sales from business services rose 29 percent last quarter to $464 million. The revenue accounts for 8.6 percent of Time Warner Cable's total sales.

Google's fiber expansion may benefit Time Warner Cable's business because "the more people figure out how to use broadband, the better off we're going to be," Chief Executive Officer Glenn Britt said during a conference call this month. Time Warner Cable shares rose 0.4 percent to $89.87 yesterday in New York. The stock has gained 41 percent in 2012. Bloomberg

Former longtime U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter was battling for his life early Tuesday after he was recently diagnosed with a "serious form of cancer," a source close to his office told CNN.

Specter, who has overcome numerous serious illnesses over the past two decades, including a brain tumor and non-Hodgkins lymphoma, was diagnosed six weeks ago with the new form of cancer, the specifics of which are being closely shielded by his family. He had "a big flareup" of the disease Monday night, the source said. Specter served in U.S. Senate from 1980 until 2011, making him the longest-serving senator from Pennsylvania.

Nearly all of those years, the political moderate was a member of the GOP, but he switched parties and became a Democrat in 2009, saying Republicans had moved too far to the right. The move gave Democrats a 60-seat filibuster-proof majority in the Senate. Two years later, when he ran for re-election, Specter lost in the Democratic primary, ending his political career. After the loss, he moved from the halls of Congress to those of academia, taking on a new role at the University of Pennsylvania Law School. "Arlen's knowledge of the inner workings of the government and lawmaking is second to none," said Michael Fitts, the law school's dean. "The insight he brings from his career in public service, particularly as a leader on judicial issues, will be invaluable to our students as they prepare for their own careers in the law."

Specter also returned to his law practice after leaving the Senate, according to his official online biography. Specter was born in Wichita, Kansas, in 1930. He is the youngest child of Lillie Shanin and Harry Specter, an immigrant from the Ukraine. After graduating from Russell High School in Kansas in 1947, he went to the University of Pennsylvania, where he majored in international relations and graduated Phi Beta Kappa four years later. Specter served stateside in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War from 1951 to 1953, before returning to college. He graduated from Yale Law School in 1956.

Specter earned some of his first political stripes in the early 1960s while serving on the Warren Commission, which investigated the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. He is credited with co-authoring the "single bullet theory," which suggested that some of the wounds to Kennedy and then-Texas Gov. John Connally were caused by the same bullet. CNN

Governors are front and center at this week's Republican National Convention, the party's national stars, given prominent speaking roles, ferried in town cars from one delegation hotel to another.

For the past several years, governors have helped define the Republican Party brand and set its agenda, and nearly a dozen state chief execs are scheduled to address the delegates from the podium. At the top of the list: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who is to give the convention keynote on Tuesday. Also scheduled are Wisconsin's Scott Walker, Susana Martinez of New Mexico, Ohio's John Kasich, South Carolina's Nikki Haley, and Virginia's Bob McDonnell, who chairs the Republican Governors Association, among others. (Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal was to speak, but he headed home to brace for Hurricane Isaac, which is threatening the Gulf Coast.

Was he left off because his job-approval rating is among the lowest of any chief executive in the nation - 38 percent rated him positively in an Inquirer Poll published Monday? Too hot to handle because of his clumsy-sounding support for a bill that would require women to have an ultrasound before an abortion in Pennsylvania? Well, McDonnell famously pushed the same thing. Vito Canuso, chairman of the Philadelphia GOP, said that he figured Corbett may have been left out because there's already a Northeastern governor to feature: Christie. "Chris Christie's has the flair," Canuso said. "Plus he's got another year of experience and he has to deal with a Democratic legislature."

Corbett, who is in Tampa and held a reception for the state delegation at the Florida Aquarium, did not seem ruffled Monday morning as he fired up the crowd at the Pennsylvania breakfast. "It's not his thing anyway," Canuso said of Corbett, echoing other fans of the governor who appreciate his hard-working persona. "I would have loved to have had the governor speak, and Sen. Pat Toomey," Pennsylvania GOP chairman Rob Gleason said, but he feels secure in the state's place in the national party: an electoral sweep in the 2010 midterms got a lot of attention. "In Pennsylvania, we're not flashy," Gleason said. "We're not here today, gone tomorrow. We're steady."

Corbett is a reflection of the state, the chairman said during a luncheon with reporters. "Tom just gets the job done, that's probably why," he is not speaking. "Some politicians are great at shameless self-promotion, but not everybody is like that."