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Cable Ops Seek Pole Attachment Decision

The American Cable Association and the National Cable & Telecommunications Association are urging the FCC to act on a petition from NCTA and Comptel to insure the FCC effort to lower pole-attachment rates really does that in a Title II ISP world.

Telecoms historically paid pay more for those attachments than cable ops. But in the interests of promoting broadband, the FCC in 2011 tried to harmonize the rates by lowering the telecom rate to the cable rate. That turned out not to have worked in practice "in all circumstances," said cable operators, and gave pole owners a cost-allocation alternative that allowed them to still charge a higher rate. They asked the FCC to fix that, but it has yet to act on the petition.

Unless it is stayed by the court, reclassification goes into effect June 12 and cable broadband becomes a telecom service subject to those potentially higher rates. ACA and NCTA had urged the FCC to fix the problem before it took action on new net neutrality rules.

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.