cable operator and the city, which requires Charter to respond to calls
in 30 seconds and to provide written accounts of answer times, times
callers are kept on hold and abandoned calls.
A company spokesman said Charter has compelling reasons why its
response times have been slowed recently.
"When you have a flood and hire 220 additional people and open a new
center, it can be difficult," said Joe Camicia, Charter vice president of
government and public relations. "We have invited them [the city] on
numerous occasions to come to the call center to see the damage, to see
the new center."
In his response to the city's letter, Camicia said he could provide
statistics beginning with February because prior records were lost to
The flood occurred Dec. 1. Since that time, the company has moved its
six call centers to a single location and hired and trained 220 new
Following these changes, response time to calls has "improved
dramatically," Camicia said.
"Last week we had response times in the 80s and 90s, [meaning] 80% to
90% of the calls were answered in 30 seconds or less, which is the
federal rule," Camicia said.
Ungar said that Charter's reasons for not supplying the data are
unacceptable, since the company had not been responding to calls in 30
seconds 63% of the time in October and 56% during September.
"Their claim that their failure is due to the Dec. 1 flood doesn't
work," Ungar said. "We don't believe their excuses."
The city is waiting to see what Charter's February data shows before
making its next decision.
Burbank has been involved in negotiations with Altrio, another cable
provider. If a contract with Altrio were approved, it would take several
years for the cable system to be installed and to connect hundreds of
residents, Ungar said.
QUESTION: What's your opinion of the city's demand that Charter
Communications honor its 30-second call answer agreement? Write to
Community Forum, 220 N. Glenoaks Blvd., Suite B, Burbank, CA 91502, or