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Comcast Cable Television Franchise Agreement

On December 11, 2018, the Board of County Commissioners approved a new ten-year franchise agreement with Comcast. The agreement provides for the provision of cable television services in Calvert County. By law, cable contracts are only for cable television services and not for Internet services. Franchises are governed by section 622 of the Cable Communications Act 1984. [2] Section 622 provides that municipalities are entitled to a maximum of 5% of the gross revenues generated by the operation of the cable system for the provision of cable services such as public, educational and public access (PEG) channels. Under the current franchise agreements, the city currently enjoys benefits from the cable company, including: in June 2016, the City of Comcast granted a franchise for its cable TV system in the city. The 2016 franchise agreement expires in June 2021. The City has entered into negotiations with Comcast to renew the franchise for a new term. Comcast has a non-exclusive franchise in Calvert County.

While each cable operator can request services from the county, Comcast is currently the only provider entering the Calvert County market. The city council does not have the power to regulate rates. A change in federal law a few years ago removed the City`s authority to regulate the base rate charged to residents for cable service. In addition, a comcast petition to the Federal Communications Commission (passed in 2011) removed the City`s authority to regulate cable TV rates. While the franchise offers residents the protection of the public right of way and a number of other benefits to the community, the current regulatory climate offers no protection against rate hikes. It is up to competition in the market to dictate these prices. A cable TV franchise agreement is a legal agreement between the city and Comcast, which is prescribed by state and federal law. . . .