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TCI, Falcon Group stay mum on plans

Companies involved in a cable TV transaction released no additional informationThursday about a new partnership that will serve Medford and Grants Pass.

The system will include — million subscribers. Included are 300,000 subscribersin five states now served by Tele-Communications Inc. (TCI) and 700,000in 26 states served by Falcon Holding Group.

Falcon will be the managing partner of the combined systems. Financialterms were not disclosed.

The effect on 80 people working for the local TCI system isn't known,said Dan Bickford, manager of the Medford-based TCI system.

Nor are clues to the future of cable rates forthcoming. The rates inboth systems vary from community to community under Federal CommunicationsCommission guidelines.

Bickford said he's received no details beyond Wednesday's initial announcementabout the partnership.

I keep having to say `I don't know,' he said. I'vehad no communication from our corporate or division offices.

Larry Johnson of the Falcon system in Hood River referred questions tothe corporate office in Los Angeles. Messages were not returned by presstime.

The Medford-based system was the first in the state, founded as SouthernOregon Cable in 1958 by the late William Smullin. It was sold to Jack KentCooke, owner of the Washington Redskins, in the 1970s for a reported $45million. TCI bought it for an undisclosed price in 1990.