State Franchises for Cable and Video

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A “franchise” is similar to a real estate lease because it is an agreement that allows a private company – like the phone company – to use streets and other public rights-of-way for private infrastructure – like phone lines. A franchise agreement usually requires the private company to pay franchise fees for the use of public property, but the agreement typically doesn’t regulate the company’s day-to-day business operations. Some franchises are issued by the City of Victoria, but many are issued by the State of Texas. 

Cable/Video:

As of January 6, 2014, all cable/video service franchises in Victoria are granted by the Public Utility Commission of Texas (“PUC”). In consideration for their private use of the public rights-of-way, certificated cable companies operating under a state franchise are required to remit a fee equal to 5% of their gross revenues earned from customers within the City limits and 1% of their gross revenues earned from customers within the City limits in support of Public, Education and Governmental (PEG) Access Channel programming on a quarterly basis.

The PUC website includes the following information about Cable Franchises:

“[A] State-Issued Certificate of Franchise Authority (SICFA) must be obtained in order for the provider to [offer Cable Television Service] in a particular service area. SICFAs are obtained through the Public Utility Commission (PUC). The PUC merely issues the SICFA and is not authorized to resolve disputes between providers and customers. The PUC only can forward cable complaints to the cable company involved and provide customer service contact information.”

“The FCC has established customer service standards for cable providers. Cable providers with a SICFA must follow these standards until there are two or more providers (excluding satellite providers) offering cable service in the relevant municipality. Information about these standards and matters that are under the FCC’s jurisdiction can be found at the FCC’s Cable Service Bureau website: www.fcc.gov/topic/cable-television.”

Customers experiencing issues with cable/video services, or with broadband services offered by a cable/video provider, should directly contact the customer service department of the service provider.  Contact information for providers with a SICFA to serve the City of Victoria are listed by the PUC:

Cable One, Inc. SICFA No. 90014                                           

Contact (complaint):  CABLE ONE INC                                         

EMERSON YEARWOOD                               

210 E. EARLL DRIVE                                    

PHOENIX,AZ 85012                                      

Emailemerson.yearwood@cableone.biz         

Phone: 602-364-6195                                      

Fax: 602-364-6013                                          

                                   

Cebridge Acquisition LP SICFA No. 90015

Contact (complaint):  CEBRIDGE TELECOM TX L P D/B/A SUDDENLINK      

DENNIS D MOFFIT

VICE PRESIDENT SENIOR COUNSEL

520 MARYVILLE CENTRE DRIVE

SUITE 300

ST LOUIS, MO 63141

Emaildennis.moffit@alticeusa.com

Phone: 314-315-9358

Fax:  314-315-9322

 

For more information on the FCC customer service standards for Cable TV providers, please visit www.fcc.gov/media/customer-service-standards

The FCC has established an online portal for consumer complaints, which may be accessed at www.ConsumerComplaints.FCC.gov