TORRANCE — Group W Cable's first public performance evaluation after three years of service sounded more like a testimonial than an interrogation.
A dozen speakers, many representing community organizations, mostly applauded the cable company for its technical and financial assistance in providing programming for their groups' functions.
Even Warren Carter, the city's cable administrator who has publicly chastised Group W for wanting to raise rates and cut services, poured the accolades.
"Overall, Group W has met or exceeded the requirements of the franchise," he said as he began last week's public hearing. "They have gone beyond the call of duty."
Larry Windsor, Group W's Torrance general manager, said the hearing was "informative" and he was pleased that the negative comments were "not too excessive."
Wide Cross Section
The complainers ranged from a woman who said a salesman arrived a day late and then was rude to her and a woman who felt she was overcharged for installation to Hollywood Riviera homeowners who do not want cables ruining their ocean and city views.
"They are not welcomed here," said Robert Mantovani, president of the Hollywood Riviera Homeowners Assn. "We have had so many complaints about installation here that we can thank Group W Cable for increasing our membership."
Windsor said about 4,000 homes, primarily mobile homes and apartments scattered throughout the city, have not been wired because of access problems. In the Riviera area there are few public easements for utility lines and the homeowners have been reluctant to provide access.
Windsor said 24,122 households, or about 53% of the city's potential customers subscribe.