Mooresville and Davidson plan to sell the Continuum Communication System for $80 million, according to documents released Friday.
Commissioners from both towns on Tuesday will consider whether to put a referendum on the proposed sale on the November ballot.
The $80 million price is included in documents accompanying the Davidson Town Board’s agenda for its Tuesday meeting.
The potential buyer is not disclosed.
The towns created what was then called MI Connection when it bought the local remnants of the bankrupt Adelphia Cable in 1992.
Adopting a 70-30 split of financial responsibilities, the towns eventually borrowed $92 million for the acquisition and subsequent deal adjustments. The name was changed to Continuum in 2017.
In 2013, the town’s adjusted their agreement, allowing Davidson to make annual payments of $1 million instead of 30 percent of the debt, with the understanding Mooresville would be reimbursed for the outstanding difference as part of a future settlement.
A summary provided in March indicated that as of early this year, Davidson had spent about $12 million and Mooresville $28 million to finance ownership of the company.
From the outset, the acquisition of the cable company was controversial. In Mooresville in 2007, commissioners deadlocked 3-3 on the final vote. Mayor Bill Thunberg cast the deciding vote in favor of the purchase and that action was cited as a reason Thunberg lost a subsequent bid for a new term.
In Davidson, the town’s ownership role in Continuum debt and the annual $1 million obligation – about 8 percent of Davidson’s $12.6 million 2019-20 operational budget – have been regular topics of debate and criticism, especially during municipal budget and capital expenditure discussions.