NATOA CHALLENGES FCC DRAFT ORDER UPENDING 35 YEARS OF HISTORY AND THOUSANDS OF AGREEMENTS ACROSS THE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (July 25, 2019) – In anticipation of the Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) August 1st vote on the Proposed Third Report and Order that effectively rewrites the Cable Act, the National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors (NATOA) is working diligently with national associations, member attorneys, and local governments across the country to oppose the proposed Order.
“A week from now, the FCC will consider the proposed franchising Third Report and Order after months of industry meetings and filings that sowed seeds of misinformation and revisionist history on federal law and regulations dating back 35 years,” said Mike Lynch, NATOA President. “NATOA opposes the proposed new rules. There is no basis to re-interpret the Cable Act. Thousands of local franchise agreements have been mutually negotiated over the last 35 years. And as a result, cable operators have become the largest broadband service providers in the nation.”
This week, NATOA filed detailed ex partes (ROSENWORCEL/STARKS EX PARTE, PAI/CARR/ORIELLY EX PARTE, EX PARTE LETTER FILED WITH NLC, USCM AND NATAT) objecting to the draft order and challenging presumptions made by the NCTA in their numerous ex parte filings in this proceeding over the last five months. “NATOA is grateful to our members who assisted in the drafting and editing of this document, and for the sustained support of and partnership with the United States Conference of Mayors (USCM), the National League of Cities (NLC), the National Association of Counties (NACo), and the Alliance for Community Media (ACM),” said Lynch. “Thank you and thanks to our member communities, their respective legal counsels, and NATOA General Counsel Nancy Werner.”
While NATOA vigorously opposes the draft Third Report and Order, we are hopeful that if the Commission opts to move forward, they consider the requests of NATOA and other local government associations and representatives for changes to ease the impact and burden on local governments and PEG access centers across the country.
NATOA is planning a webinar in early August to talk about the substance, impacts and response to the final order.