Latest industry news in Texas and around the country.
The 87th Texas Legislature convened Jan. 12, but like so many things in recent months, the pomp and circumstance of the day was different, and how business will be conducted for the subsequent 140 days will be driven by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

While in-person access to the Legislature might be restricted, cable is keeping the public engaged and the lawmaking process transparent.
The Texas Cable Association’s team at the Texas Capitol is led – for a second legislative session – by a staff seasoned by decades of combined policy experience. Walt Baum, Velma Cruz and Ryan Weiseman will represent the cable industry and member companies Altice USA, Charter Spectrum, Comcast, Sparklight and Vyve Broadband on cable, telecommunications and related issues.
Below is a partial list of broad issues of interest to the Texas Cable Association. Visit TCA’s website for more information and to learn more about the cable industry in Texas.

  • Innovation
  • Internet of Things (IoT)
  • Education
  • Digital divide
  • Parental Controls
  • Privacy/safety/security
  • Net neutrality
  • Environment

In cities and towns across Texas, local cable operators and their employees make their communities a better place to live. Cable companies not only make financial and in-kind donations to numerous civic and charitable organizations, but employees volunteer thousands of hours of their time each year. Check out the latest cable industry community initiatives below.
Spectrum announces $30,000 Spectrum Digital Education Grant for Hispanic Federation in Fort Worth

Spectrum has awarded the Hispanic Federation in Fort Worth a $30,000 Spectrum Digital Education Grant for a Learning Hub as part of the company’s multiyear, $6 million cash and in-kind national commitment to digital education in Spectrum communities across the country. The company doubled its original 2020 commitment to digital education, awarding a total of $1 million to 47 organizations providing broadband education, technology, and training. 

The Hispanic Federation Learning Hub, located at partner agency SER Jobs for Progress in Fort Worth, will further their partnership to serve the local community through broadband access and digital education. Through digital literacy and job readiness workshops, Hispanic Federation, in partnership with SERS Jobs for Progress, will train more than 75 seniors and families. Another 230 families will participate in individual and group learning, applying technology to college readiness, low-income health programs, civic engagement, and the Entre Familia Non-Profit Learning Series. Read more.

Charter Spectrum opens new and newly remodeled Spectrum stores in Texas

Charter Communications, Inc. recently opened newly remodeled Spectrum Stores in Austin and Orange, plus new Spectrum stores in Lake Worth and San Antonio. The Spectrum Store gives consumers a convenient option for adding or managing their Spectrum internet, TV, mobile or voice services. The stores offer the latest devices and accessories compatible with Spectrum Mobile and provide the opportunity to experience the power of Spectrum Internet, featuring starting speeds of 200 Mbps and plans with connections up to 1 gigabit per second, as well as the interactive Spectrum TV App, which gives customers access to the Spectrum TV content across a wide variety of platforms and devices.

Comcast Houston partners with Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Houston to equip clubs with Wi-Fi-connected “Lift Zones”

Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Houston and Comcast have joined forces to equip 10 of the nonprofit’s Clubs in the Houston area, and its headquarters, with Wi-Fi connected “Lift Zones” to enable children and teens to fully participate in educational opportunities and the digital economy. Comcast is providing robust Wi-Fi hotspots in safe spaces designed to help lower income students get online, participate in distance learning and do their homework. Installation began in early January. Read more.

Comcast Extends COVID Support Through June 30, 2021

Comcast will extend its commitments to help people connect to the internet during the COVID-19 pandemic as millions continue to stay home while many workplaces and schools operate virtually. Comcast will continue to provide free internet service for the first 60 days for new Internet Essentials customers, and free access to more than 1.5 million public Xfinity Wi-Fi hotspots, the largest network of its kind in the country, through June 30, 2021. This is the third time Comcast has extended these commitments. Read more.

Comcast Houston and Internet Essentials partner to help the Tejano Center Bridge the digital divide

Comcast and Internet Essentials on Jan. 4 announced a partnership with the Tejano Center for Community Concerns to bring a Wi-Fi-Connected “Lift Zone” to the campus to provide a safe space for families to participate in educational opportunities and the digital economy. In addition to this partnership, Comcast, Internet Essentials and Telemundo surprised 100 Tejano Center families with a laptop and a year of internet service as part of Comcast’s Internet Essentials program. Read more.
Sparklight’s $3 million investment in Wharton County, Texas, keeps customers connected

Sparklight has invested more than $3 million across Wharton County over the past three years to provide the fastest and most reliable internet service, keeping Wharton’s residents and businesses connected to what matters most. Investments include new hardware and software such as fiber and power supply upgrades, electronics and transport gear, and the installation of a new cable modem termination system and Optical Transport Network, all of which enable faster speeds and greater reliability and uptime. Sparklight has given more than $20,000 in sponsorships and in-kind donations to local communities. Read more.

Sparklight extends COVID-19 relief efforts through December 2021

Sparklight will extend relief measures to help those in need stay connected to the internet while working and learning from home, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the communities it serves. The company will extend the availability of its 15 Mbps residential internet plan for $10 per month for the first three months of service to help low income families and those most impacted from coronavirus challenges, such as seniors and college students through December 31, 2021. Read more.

Sparklight donates more than 900 pounds of food to food banks in Kingsville, Aransas Pass

Sparklight associates collected more than 900 pounds of food to donate to food banks on the Texas Coast to help feed families in need this holiday season. It also purchased and donated gifts for children served by Brush County CASA. Food donations collected by Sparklight associates in the region were donated to The Purple Door in Kingsville and Helping Hands Food Pantry in Aransas Pass. 

“It’s an annual tradition for Sparklight associates to hold food drives during the holidays, but it takes on greater urgency this year when local food banks are seeing an increased demand due to the number of community members who have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Sparklight’s Regional General Manager David Hilarides. “We are happy to support The Purple Door and Helping Hands in their mission to feed families in need this holiday season and beyond.”
Texas Cable Association |