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Legislative Policies

MACTA’s set of five principles state the organization’s position on key areas that affect its members.

 

Minnesota must Preserve its Successful Tradition of Local Franchising

Cities must maintain municipal franchising authority over any provider offering video services in a city in order to:

  • protect consumers and residents by ensuring the resolution of consumer/resident complaints such as property damage and billing disputes
  • enforce technical and customer service standards
  • enforce construction and safety codes
  • properly manage limited and valuable public rights-of-way

 

Cities have a right and an obligation on behalf of local taxpayers to properly manage the rights-of-way as a limited resource and to collect compensation from private users of public property.

Cities Must Have Ability to Provide Service When Needed

Cities must maintain authority to assure that their communities benefit from the availability of affordable, advanced communications services by being allowed to provide broadband, telecommunications, and information services, including advanced wireless and/or “fiber to the home” (FTTH) technologies, to local residents and businesses.

Cities Provide PEG: Public – Education – Government Programming

To meet each community’s unique communications needs and interests, Cities must maintain authority to require sufficient financial, technical, and in-kind support for Public, Education, and Government (“PEG”) operations and Institutional and Community Networks.

Cities Support and Encourage Fair Competition

Cities welcome and support the operation of competitive wireline video providers in our Cities. Wireline competition is currently available in more than 50 Minnesota cities, and in 2010 legislation was passed allowing cities to grant competitive franchises to incumbent telephone companies with different service territories than the incumbent cable operator. But, even in a competitive environment, local Minnesota cities have a role to play.

a) Although residents will benefit from having choices in the selection of wireline video providers, the appearance of a second wireline provider does not eliminate the need for local authority to protect consumers, residents and public assets in the rights-of-way.

b) Long-term success of both providers is not guaranteed, and Minnesota Cities have experienced the exit of providers from the rights-of-way, abandonment of equipment, and the sale or merger of one competitor to the other, all of which create a continued need for local control and oversight.

Cities Oppose Discriminatory Redlining

Cities oppose economic, racial, and other discriminatory redlining and seek to assist in closing the digital divide by allowing more choices for consumers in every neighborhood. Cities are in the best position to determine at the local level how and where video providers serve their community.

 

 

 

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