Mesa man upset with telephone lines

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By Jim Carr By Jim Carr

Mesa, Ariz. -- Bill Rouse's home is full of history, and with that history comes a lot of work.

"I have to keep it patched and pained and plumbed and all,” Rouse told 3 On Your Side. “It is pretty much what you expect from a historic home."

But an old duplex Rouse owns behind his home has a problem he cannot fix on his own.

There are utility lines that literally drape across his roof top, and many of those lines even run along the ground.

Rouse says it does not look right and contractors won't re-roof his duplex until the hazardous lines are raised or at least buried.
"So I called the City of Mesa and they verified that they were actually phone lines owned by CenturyLink," Rouse explained.

Rouse says he called CenturyLink time and time again about those utility lines, and he always heard the same thing:

"Oh, they would get right on it," he said.

Rouse says he called for six long months, but the lines never moved. That also meant he could not hire a contractor to re-roof his house.

"I feel like I have been dead-lettered, I’m despondent.  I'm just at my wit's end and that is why I called 3 On Your Side,” Rouse said.

CenturyLink immediately looked into the issue for me and discovered the lines were in fact theirs, but realized some of them also belonged to Cox Communications.

As a result, Cox was contacted and quickly buried their lines.  CenturyLink plans on burying their lines later this week.

Rouse says he sure is glad. 

"They are making me look like a slum lord.  I don't like that," he said.

CenturyLink discovered the duplex apparently had a second floor added without a permit nearly 50 years ago, causing the roof to touch the wires.

As for why it took six months for someone to finally get out there, CenturyLink apologized saying that response is "not typical."