Both FCC Chairnan Kevin Martin and Commissioner Robert McDowell praised a 6th Circuit decision that will help pave the way for telco entry into cable’s video entertainment territory. The major thrust of the upheld FCC rule is the establishment of a 90-day shot clock for local franchising authorities to consider telco entry into the business. Martin was particularly pleased that objections of an insufficient public record expressed earlier by Democrat Jonathan Adelstein were specifically rebuffed by the Court.
Martin said, “Over the last ten years, cable rates have more than doubled. Consumers need greater choice and more competition to help address the soaring price of cable television.This ruling helps ensure that new competitors to cable are not subjected to unreasonable delays, build-out requirements and fees when trying to compete with the incumbent cable operators.”
McDowell added, “No governmental entities, including those of us at the FCC, should have any thumb on the scale to give a regulatory advantage to any competitor. Providing regulatory certainty to all market players is the best way to enhance video competition, accelerate broadband deployment and produce lower rates for consumers.”