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City Council Calls On Cable Companies To Resolve Padres Dispute

The City Council today unanimously passed a resolution calling on Time Warner Cable and Fox Sports San Diego to resolve a dispute so that residents of northern parts of the city can watch Padres games this season.

The resolution says "the City Council recognizes the importance of professional baseball in San Diego and encourages Time Warner Cable and Fox Sports San Diego to negotiate an agreement by Opening Day so that Time Warner Cable customers can watch their hometown team, the San Diego Padres, compete on television.''

Fox Sports started its San Diego channel last year and won Padres television rights but failed to reach an agreement to get carried on Time Warner, which has 130,000 customers north of Interstate 8.

The station is carried by Cox Cable, AT&T U-Verse and the two major satellite providers.

Representatives of Time Warner Cable and FSSD said their negotiating teams have met in the nearly two weeks since the issue was heard by a City Council committee. Neither would elaborate on whether there has been progress.

Deane Leavenworth, a vice president of external affairs at TW, said his company wants to air Padres games for its customers, but it was up to the station.

"When they deliver a proposal that makes economic sense for our customers -- all of our customers, including those who are sports fans -- we will carry Fox Sports, including Padres games,'' Leavenworth said.

Henry Ford, the vice president and general manager of FSSD, said negotiations will continue through the week.

"As I've stated before, and it's necessary to reiterate here, we have offered Time Warner Cable fair market terms and conditions,'' Ford said. "The bottom-line is we're not asking Time Warner Cable to pay more than anyone else.''

Opening Day is Monday.

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