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Hundt sought more

Cable TV operators crying foul over further FCC price rollbacks can take this for solace: Had chairman Reed Hundt had his way, it would have been worse.

Agency sources said Hundt originally sought an additional 16% rollback in cable rates.

The 16% reduction would have been on top of the 10% industrywide cut adopted last April, thus resulting in a combined 26% cut in rates from September 1992.

Sources said Hundt’s call for Draconian cuts prompted horsetrading at the Federal Communications Commission on Friday and throughout the weekend between the chairman and fellow commissioners James Quello and Andrew Barrett.

Barrett originally proposed new cuts of 2%-4%, sources said. The three commissioners finally settled on an additional 7% slash in the benchmark rates.

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