*Thursdays are flexible days - dependent on events and training needs
The battle with the FCC has moved to Congress and they have regulatory oversight over the Commission. The most effective way for us to counteract the FCC Rule is through direct contact with your Representatives. Please ask them to tell the FCC they disapprove of the agency's actions in the rule-making.
Click Here to send a template letter via email. All that is needed is your zip code which brings up all Maine Representatives for your area. You then have a template letter already created which you can either change or accept and then fill in your contact information. The letter will be emailed and you will receive a confirmation that it was received.
There will be public comment and reply deadlines this Fall. The FCC may issue a ruling in 2019.
Impact on communities and PEG: The FCC is proposing to rule that all “In-Kind” cable franchise obligations other than PEG capital costs and build-out requirements are a “franchise fee” under the Cable Act and thus count against the 5% franchise fee cap. The FCC would define “In-Kind” contributions so broadly as to undermine the Cable Act’s intent to provide franchise fees to communities for use of public rights of way. Any non-monetary benefit could conceivably be charged back against franchise fees – from backhaul services, to electronic program guides, to the value of PEG channel capacity itself. The charge backs would be at fair market value as determined by the cable industry, so we believe in some areas franchise fees might be eliminated in their entirety.
Wireless OrderSummary: The FCC has issued a Declaratory Ruling and Third Report and Order on Wireless Infrastructure https://www.fcc.gov/
document/streamlining-deployment-next-generation-wireless-infrastructure).Impact on communities and PEG: The impact on towns, cities and counties will be immediate – the Order severely limits local control over siting of wireless facilities, and limits the compensation for the use of public rights of way to direct costs. Limiting right-of-way compensation to costs will cost communities billions of dollars in revenue and will increase political pressure at state level and in Congress to reduce or eliminate cable franchise fees of all types.
MAINE PUBLIC - EDUCATION - GOVERNMENT (PEG) NON-DISCRIMINIATION BILL
The Community Television Association of Maine members have submitted a bill to be presented before the Maine Legislature in the next session. This bill addresses many issues municipalities have had when negotiating with the cable provider. It also addresses issues public access stations have brought up such as:
Let us broadcast in HighDef - same as all other channels
Let us provide our program line up to be shown with all others - for a fee of course.
Stop sending our channels into the 1300's. Public Access means everyone can get our programming
For municipalities, it strengthens language surrounding negotiation renewals, distance and number of houses required for expansion, and time frames.