Camarillo has become the latest city in Ventura County to welcome a new cable provider within its borders.
Earlier this week, the City Council approved a franchise agreement that allows GTE Media Ventures Inc. to offer cable television and other telecommunications services to Camarillo residents.
The approval means that Camarillo residents may soon have an alternative to TCI of Ventura County. The agreement may also result in lower rates.
GTE already has signed agreements with Ventura County and Thousand Oaks. Once GTE secures similar pacts with Oxnard, Port Hueneme and Santa Paula, the fiber-optic system can go online.
The agreement is part of a pilot system being tested in Ventura County. GTE executives hope to serve as many as 7 million customers with the technology by 2004. In addition to sparking local competition, the GTE service will provide Camarillo customers more channels than they now receive with TCI, company officials said. Also, the technology will provide customers a superior sound and resolution on its 78 channels, officials said.
Future plans call for the company to expand the system to allow 150 more channels and offer interactive services by the turn of the century.