SCAN NATOA Conference, May 11, 2017
PowerPoint Slides from
State and Local Regulation of Wireless Facilities in the Public Right-of-Way
William Sanders

Deputy City Attorney
City & County of San Francisco

posted 5/18/17

SCAN NATOA Conference Plenary Session Powerpoint
May 11, 2017

The State of Communications Law in California and the Nation

Christy Marie Lopez


Immediate Past President

Best Best & Krieger LLP 

Gerry Lederer 
Best Best & Krieger LLP

Tripp May
Telecom Law Firm

posted 5/15/17


Amicus Curiae Brief filed by League of California Cities, California State Association of Counties, International Municipal Lawyers Association, and SCAN NATOA in T-Mobile West v. City & County of San Francisco (California Supreme Court matter involving interpretation of Public Utilities Code § 7901)

posted 5/15/17

Joint Comments Filed by the League of Arizona Cities and Towns, League of California Cities, California State Association of Counties, New Mexico Municipal League, League of Oregon Cities, and SCAN NATOA, Inc. in FCC proceeding involving small cells and right-of-way management

posted 3/31/17 and 4/19/17

Power Point Presentations - Wireless Updates February 9, 2017

Mobilite Presentation

T-Mobile Presentation

T-Mobile Video

Verizon Presentation

posted 2/14/17

 Joint Comments Filed by the League of California Cities, the League of Oregon Cities and SCAN NATOA, Inc. in FCC proceeding involving small cells in historic districts

posted 6/28/16

Amicus Curiae Brief filed by League of California Cities, California State Association of Counties, and SCAN NATOA in T-Mobile West v. City & County of San Francisco (litigation involving interpretation of Public Utilities Code § 7901)

Posted 3/10/16

Power Point Presentations from Wireless Shot Clock
Primer Session

Trevor Lottes, President, Kapstone Planning, and Stephen Higa,
Principal Planner, City of Irvine

Omar Masry, Wireless Planner, City & County of San Francisco

Robert (“Tripp”) May III, Shareholder, Telecom Law Firm

posted 2/5/16

 SCAN NATOA comments filed with the FCC on the TWC/Charter


AB 57 Delegation Letter 071315

posted 071615

Amicus Curiae Brief filed by League of California Cities, California State Association of Counties, League of Oregon Cities, and SCAN NATOA in Montgomery County v. United States (litigation involving FCC's Section 6409(a) Report & Order issued in October 2014)

posted 4/30/15

Power Point Presentations from the Telecom 101 Session

Pasadena, CA  -- January 15, 2015


Local Regulation of Wireless Telecommunication Facilities

Steven L. Flower, Richards, Watson & Gershon

Christy Marie Lopez, Aleshire & Wynder


FCC Regulations on Wireless Infrastructure

Robert (“Tripp”) May III, Telecom Law Firm


Current Legal Issues Affecting the Telecommunications Industry

Gail A. Karish, Best, Best & Krieger

posted 1/23/15

·         FCC Report and Order in rulemaking addressing wireless facilities siting policies, including clarifying the implementation of (1) Section 6409(a) of the Middle Class Tax Relief & Job Creation Act of 2012; and (2) the FCC’s 2009 Declaratory Ruling adopting a “shot clock” for wireless facility applications

posted October 22, 2014

Comments Filed by SCAN NATOA with the FCC re Applications of Comcast, Time Warner, et al

posted October 7, 2014

California Local Governments File Reply Comments in the FCC's Wireless NPRM

posted March 6, 2014

Joint Comments Filed by the League of California Cities,
the California State Association of Counties and
SCAN NATOA Regarding the FCC's Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

posted February 3, 2014

FCC Notice of Proposed TIS Rule Making  - Expanded Content

posted August 6, 2013

Amicus Curiae Brief filed by League of California Cities, California State Association of Counties, and SCAN NATOA in Pacific Bell v. City of Livermore (litigation involving interpretation of Public Utilities Code § 7901)

posted May 9, 2013


Sample/Form Letter of Opposition to AB 185

by Christy M. Lopez

posted 5/1/13


AB 162 Action Alert by Jonathan Kramer

posted 4/24/13

Letter to Assemblymember Chris Holden
Regarding AB 162 (Broadband Expansion Act)

posted 4/16/13

Documents and court docket for City of Arlington v. FCC Supreme Court case 

Supreme Court docket

Case documents, including Petition for Writ of Certiorari

Posted 11/08/12

NATOA has asked for SCAN's support in educating the FCC about the value of PEG Programming.  Your participation is encouraged

PEG Comment Template

Electronic Filing Instructions


posted 8/20/12


PowerPoint Presentations -- SCAN Annual Conference

Long Beach, CA - June 21, 2012

Nicholas Miller, Partner, Best, Best & Krieger LLP

Steve Traylor, Executive Director, NATOA


posted 6/25/12

CAP ACT Handouts from SCAN Chapter Meeting of January 19, 2012 and February 23, 2012

posted 1/25/12

·     SCAN's comments in FCC proceeding involving Over-the-Air Reception Devices Rule ("OTARD") challenge against City of Philadelphia

posted 1/5/12

 Letters to CPUC and Nevada Attorney General regarding accessibility of PEG channels through
AT&T U-Verse

posted 9/14/11

SCAN's comments in support of the motion for extension of time
In the Matter of
Acceleration of Broadband Deployment Expanding the Reach and Reducing the Cost of Broadband Deployment by Improving Policies Regarding Public Rights of Way and Wireless Facilities Siting before the
Federal Communications Commission

posted 8/9/11

SCAN Notice of Inquiry (NOI) Filing to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
In the Matter of Acceleration of Broadband Deployment Expanding the Reach and Reducing the Cost of Broadband Deployment by Improving Policies Regarding Public Rights of Way and Wireless Facilities Siting

posted 7/19/11

.pdf files of the presentations held on March 10, 2011 in Pasadena

Wireless Facility Siting presentation -- Javan Rad

Wireless Facility Siting presentation -- Scott Longhurst

CALWA Informational Video (youtube.com)

posted 3/11/11

Application for Rehearing by the League of California Cities, CSAC, and SCAN NATOA re: CPUC Environmental Review of Wireless Facilities

posted 1/26/11

Before the Public Utilities Commission of the State of California





posted 11/9/10

Power Point Presentations - Social Networking
Santa Monica, CA -  October 28, 2010

Ron Vinson, Chief Administrative Officer Dept. Of  Telecommunications and Information Services – City of San Francisco

Robin Gee, CityTV Manager -  City of Santa Monica

Theresa Fuentes, Assistant City Attorney – City of Pasadena


Ryder Smith – CEO, Tripepi Smith & Associates – Technology and Government Relations Specialists

posted 10/28/10

Letter to State Representatives regarding SCAN
involvement in DIVCA Hearings

posted 8/24/10

SCAN NATOA Conference Social Networking Links

Karen L. Neuman
St. Ledger-Roty, Neuman & Olson LLP
Power Point Presentation

Adriel Hampton
City of San Francisco

Kristy Fifelski
City of Reno
Power Point Presentation

other links for Kristy Fifelski

 posted 6/7/10

NATOA members,

Below is a generic public service announcement of the American Heart Association for CPR, that features NATOA member (and former officer) Carol Mathewson.  It is not specific to Tacoma, and is available for use anywhere.  If anyone is interested in using this PSA, please contact Jeff Lueders in Tacoma and he will get you a broadcast quality DVD.  Jeff’s email address is jlueders@cityoftacoma.org.

It would be great if this PSA got widespread visibility.

Triathalon CPR PSA Generic.wmv

Posted 4/20/10



Posted March 2010

Preliminary State Superior Court injunction issued in California prevents Charter from moving channels in the City of Glendale

Posted 2/24/10

RFP for Production Services

City of Westlake Village

Posted 7/30/09

posted 6/9/09

Tom Long's Powerpoint from the Conference Session on New Distribution Channels: Legal and Policy Issues

Social Networking and Government

posted 5/27/09
Social Networking Helpful links for setting up your YouTube, Twitter and Facebook sites.

Powerpoint from Rich Bartlebaugh of SGTV on setting up a YouTube presence:


URLs from Randi Zuckerberg of Facebook:

1) http://facebook.com/facebookpages
For step-by-step instructions and best practices for setting up a public Facebook page

2) http://facebook.com/influencers
Examples of what influential people and celebrities are doing on their Facebook Pages

3) http://facebook.com/nonprofits
Best practices for nonprofits on setting up a social media presence

Twitter information from Smith Long of the Center for Governmental Studies:


General links on social networking

Social Networking Tips For Local News Stations

Optimizing your YouTube uploads

YouTube tips for nonprofits

Pentagon Looks to Facebook, Twitter

Twitter, Facebook not ready for Government 2.0?http://www.digitalcommunitiesblogs.com/CCIO/2009/03/twitter-facebook-not-ready-for.php

Twitter tools on the rise

Twitter first off the mark with Hudson plane crash coverage

Twitter Buzz: Quitters Outnumber Hitters

Who Tweets in Government

posted 1/26/09

City of Torrance State and City Video Franchise Ordinance

posted 10/30/08

Video System Maintenance RFP

posted 9/30/08

Comments filed by SCAN with the FCC opposing the CTIA's petition that the FCC intercede in cell siting

posted 3/10/08

Upcoming PEG Workshop

Posted 11/28/07

Programming Policies:

Policy Analysis    and    Mission Statements and Policy Guidelines

Posted 11/19/07

AT&T Petition For Limited Waiver

Posted 11/13/07

City of Calabasas DIVCA Ordinance

Posted 11/13/07

Simi Valley DIVCA Ordinance

Posted 11/13/07

City of Concord DIVCA Ordinance

Posted 11/9/07

Foster City DIVCA Ordinance

Foster City Telecommunications Policy

Foster City Staff Report on DIVCA Ordinance

Posted 11/9/07

City of Richmond DIVCA Ordinance

Posted 11/8/07

City of Oceanside - DIVCA Ordinance

Posted 11/6/07
FEMA Disaster Assistance Flyers for those affected by the fires



Role of the CPUC in DIVCA
Power Point presented by
Michael Morris
Video Franchising & Broadband Deployment
Communications Division
California Public Utilities Commission

October 10, 2007


The Division of Ratepayer Advocates


AT&T/Walnut Creek Final Settlement Agreement

Handouts from the
SCAN NATOA Conference 5/24/07

AB 2987 Customer Service References

AB2987 Customer Service Requirements Power Point

AB 2987 Section 5860

AB 2987 Handout

Consumer Protection Under AB 2987

Customer Service Standards Power Point - Joe Van Eaton

Letter to Time Warner from the City of Los Angeles

posted 3/20/07

NAB Exhibits Only Pass

posted 3/11/07

Talking Points on Legislative Issues

posted 2/26/07

Talking Points For Mayors at USCM

Ex Parte Talking Points

Letter to FCC Regarding Video Franchising

Mayors' Information

More Mayors' Information

posted 1/19/07

Summary of Congressional Telecom Bills to Keep Your Eye On!

posted 1/19/07


Adelstein Dissent on FCC Decision

posted 12.20.06

AT&T vs. Walnut Creek

posted 12.14.06

The FCC (courtesy of the Democratic Commissioners) is seeking comment on potential conditions to the at&t/BellSouth merger.  Anyone interested should use the electronic comment filing system to file comments or send an e-mail with your perspective.

.pdf Public Notice

posted 10/16/06

Handouts for SCAN NATOA AB2987 Meetings - October 2006

Bill Marticorena - Digital Infrastructure and
Video Competition Act of 2006 - .ppt

John Risk - Customer Service Power Point

John Risk - Customer Service Slides

Michael Friedman - AB 2987 Summary

Greg Fuentes -



Marc Jaffe - AB2987 PEG Powerpoint

Paul Valle-Riestra - AB 2987 Presentation

Comparison of  State of California and Federal Legislation

Linked is a chart that compares various provisions in the Senate, House, and California
cable franchise legislation. The goal was to keep the chart as simple as possible.
Please be sure to refer to the actual legislation for more detail.

posted 10/3/06

CSAC Letter to Governor Schwarzenegger on AB 2987

posted 9/27/06

Enrolled (Clean) Version of AB 2987

posted 9/19/06

Map of AT&T and Verizon Coverage in LA County (.pdf)

posted 9/05/06

Draft AB2987 prepared by Greg Fuentes

posted 8/27/06

List of Amendments (.pdf) to AB2987

posted 8/25/06

Word Document with redlined AB2987 Amendments

List of Amendments (.pdf) to AB2987

posted 8/23/06

Word Document with redlined AB2987 Amendments

List of Amendments (.pdf) to AB2987

posted 8/10/06

Amended Language AB2987

posted 8/8/06

Amended Language SB1627

posted 8/8/06

The proposed abrogation language (permitting cable companies to opt out of their franchises under certain circumstances) distributed at the California State Senate hearing on June 26, 2006 is now available for your review

Abrogation Language - AB2987

posted 6/27/06

This item, and others, will be discussed at the hearing June 28, 2006, so be certain to contact your State Senator regarding any concerns you may have, especially if your Senator is on the Energy, Utilities and Commerce Committee. 

Committee members:


Senator Martha Escutia (Chair)
Senator Dave Cox (Vice-Chair)
Senator Richard Alarcon
Senator Jim Battin
Senator Debra Bowen
Senator Joseph Dunn
Senator Robert Dutton
Senator Christine Kehoe
Senator Kevin Murray

Senator Joe Simitian

Amended Version of AB2987

posted 6/23/06

AB 2987 Documents From the League of Cities

Public Safety Concerns 6.15.06

DejaVu Energy Cable 6.12.06

Talk Points 6.21.06

Issues 6.21.06

posted 6.21.06

AB 2987 Sample Opposition Letter

posted 6/13/06

Amendments to AB2987

posted 5/25/06

Proposed Amendments to AB2987
Prepared by Paul Valle-Riestra
SCAN NATOA Board Member
Senior Assistant City Attorney, City of Walnut Creek

posted 5/17/06

Senator Stevens Introduces Telecom Reform Legislation

Proposed Communications Act Amendment

Posted 5/1/06

Decision dismissing most of the claims made by AT&T against the City of Walnut Creek regarding Project Lightspeed

posted 4/14/06

Locals are learning about COPE - Communications, Promotion and Enhancement Act of 2006 - Legislation Introduced by Representatives Barton, Upton, Rush and Pickering

California AB 2987 – April 5, 2006 (Nuñez, Levine) - posted April 6, 2006

COPE Testimony


Oral Testimony of the Honorable Ken Fellman March 30, 2006

Partner In Promoting Video Barton Rush March 29, 2006 - posted April 3, 2006

Communications Opportunity, Promotion and Advancement (COPE)
Act introduced by Reps. Barton and Upton.

Draft dated April 12, 2006

Proposed legislation creating a “national franchise”
for cable companies by U.S. House Commerce
Committee Chairman Joe L. Barton (R-Texas).
Draft dated March 27, 2006

47 U.S.C. 521 Current Cable Act Provisions

Search the United States Code

Proposed Amendments to California Senate Bill No. 850
March 7, 2006, 2:23 p.m.

Black History Month Billboard Pages Available Free

Feburary 2006

Is Anyone Out There Watching?

Viewership Power Point for Government Access Channels

By Robin Gee, CityTV, Santa Monica
for the NATOA 2005 Conference

SBC Asks FCC To Exempt Video Service From Franchising

posted 9.15.05


By Brian Blackstone, Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES

WASHINGTON (Dow Jones)--SBC Communications Inc. (SBC) on Wednesday asked the Federal Communications Commission to exempt its video service from cable franchising requirements, arguing that its Internet-based service shouldn't be subject to certain rules governing cable.

"This integrated suite of (Internet protocol)-enabled services cannot properly be viewed as a traditional 'cable service,'" SBC said in a filing with the FCC as part of the agency's 18-month-old Internet services proceeding.

Wednesday's filing is the first time SBC has formally asked the FCC to free it from franchise requirements, though the company has long insisted they don't apply.

SBC said it is spending $5 billion to deploy a video offering to 18 million customers within three years. Those customers encompass 2,000 different franchise areas.

"Under normal conditions, the negotiation of each of these franchises can be protracted, taking at least several months to more than a year, thus inevitably making region-wide entry a long-term process," SBC said.

And a video product is needed "in order to justify the significant investment associated with these new networks," the filing stated.

The company has no doubt been buoyed by recent comments from FCC Chairman Kevin Martin. In an interview with USA Today last month, Martin stated that he had asked FCC staff "to explore what the commission can do to ensure that local authorities are not unreasonably refusing to award additional competitive licenses."

FCC action would probably be the quickest path for SBC on the franchise issue, though any decision by the FCC would probably be litigated. Congressional action would lower litigation risk, and there's some Capitol Hill support for SBC's position.

Sen. John Ensign, R-Nev., in July introduced legislation that would eliminate state and local franchising requirements. In June, Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, said a "national solution" may be needed on the franchise issue.

But legislation could take time. Analysts at Legg Mason Wood Walker Inc. pointed out in a research note this week that "we suspect the (franchise exemption) effort will become entangled in a broader congressional rewrite (of telecom laws), which will likely take time."

Even more pressing telecom issues like the digital television transition, which faces a budgetary deadline, have largely been sidelined for the near term as Congress focuses its attention on the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

Though SBC wants the regulatory clarity of a federal franchising rule, a company spokesman said that it will move ahead with its video offering even in the absence of congressional or FCC relief.

A spokesman for the National Cable & Telecommunications Association, which represents the cable industry, didn't immediately return a call seeking comment on SBC's petition.

In a June speech, NCTA Chief Executive Kyle McSlarrow said, "The government must avoid picking winners and losers by imposing regulation based on the particular mix of technology a video provider deploys."

-By Brian Blackstone, Dow Jones Newswires; 202-828-3397; brian.blackstone@ dowjones.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

09-14-05 1753ET

Copyright (c) 2005 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

Copyright (C) 2005 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved.


The National Association of Regional Councils wanted me to let you know that this programming is available for distribution on any PEG channel.  In addition, other programming which they have previously produced is also available on the web at http://www.eda.gov/NewsEvents/WebCastsVideos.xml

 A Telecast on July 27th, 2005
Building A 21st Century World Class Workforce

3:00 - 4:00 P.M. EDT
Click Here to Download Flyer

This telecast will showcase bold new initiatives in the expansion of workforce development systems for maintaining and strengthening

America’s economic strength.  The demand for higher-skill, higher-wage workers exceeds that of any time in our nation’s past. New industries have emerged. Other industries that are today just a gleam in the eye of some inventor will soon be woven into the fabric of our economy. The constant of commerce in the twenty-first century will be the need for, knowledge workers, people who possess high levels of specialized skills and training.

Two-thirds of America’s economic growth in the 1990s resulted from the introduction of new technologies, and 60 percent of the new jobs of

the 21st century require post-secondary education currently held by only one-third of America’s workforce. To build the workforce of the

21st Century, today’s workers must adjust to the changes of the 21st Century economy. 

The telecast will include discussion on what it takes to build a world class workforce; a new streamlined workforce development system in the state of Mississippi; and a community college perspective of how local efforts are putting these concepts into practice. America must ensure that its workers have the opportunity to equip themselves with the necessary tools to succeed in a new and dynamic global economy. This will require local, regional, state and federal partnerships that closely link economic development and workforce development efforts.

 Note: While this telecast is free, registration is recommended, and no permission or clearance is required for rebroadcast.

 Questions can be sent to

Peggy Tadej
Director of Environment and Special Projects
Nat. Association of Regional Councils
1666 Connecticut Ave., NW Suite 300
Washington, DC 20009
202-986-1032, ext. 224
202-986-1038 fax



Proposed City of Los Angeles Cable Customer Service Standards

Press Release from Mayor James Hahn's Office Regarding Standards

Current Consumer Service Standards

posted 2/14/05

Survey on City Council and Commission Coverage and Playback - August 2004 (Excel Download)

Survey on Satellite Carriage of PEG Channels (Word Download)

Communications Sites on City Owned Light Poles/Traffic Signals - Posted March 2, 2004

Survey Results from SCAN NATOA members.


Helpful Council Meeting Tips for Televised Meetings - Contributions from several Cities

Tulare City Council Suggestions for Televised Meetings


NOTE - These agreement are only examples and may not be suitable for every situation. Have your City Attorney/County Counsel review any language that you use.

County of San Diego

Full Policy in Word


City of Yuma, Arizona

Programming Acquisition and Exchange:

Cooperative arrangements and agreements with local educational programmers,
broadcasters, cable companies and other production groups may be established
for efficient operations and communications.
On some occasions, videotapes may be lent to other agencies for their use in
video projects or presentations. In addition, video tape may be given to
professional news organizations for public service work. These videotapes
may not be used for commercial purposes and a credit line must appear in
graphic form in the finished project stating "Videotape courtesy of
City-73." The Manager, Electronic Communications or a designated
representative must approve all requests for videotapes.

Murfreesboro, Tennesee

"WARNING: All video and audio contained on this tape are
protected by United States copyright law and may not be reproduced,
distributed, transmitted, displayed, edited or broadcast without the prior
written permission of the City of Murfreesboro, TN. For more information
about this program contact the City of Murfreesboro, Cable Television
Coordinator at (615) 848-3245 or email city3@ci.murfreesboro.tn.us."

Full Policy in Word

Charter Communications vs. Santa Cruz County -
posted November 20, 2003
Brief of the United States and the Federal Communications Commission as Amicus Curiae on the Petition for a Writ of Certiorari to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit


City of Los Angeles Rate Order (Ordinance No. 175231)

Adelphia's Request for Emergency Stay of Local Rate Order

Opposition by the City of Los Angeles to the Request for
Emergency Stay of Local Rate Order

Opposition of the City of Los Angeles to Adelphia's
Appeal of the City's Rate Order (July 11, 2003)

         Exhibits to Opposition of the Appeal

FCC Denial of Adelphia's Request for Emergency Stay of Local Rate Order - July 29, 2003


(Adobe Acrobat Document)

Case No. C03-02532RS

Date: August 13, 2003

Web Streaming Cities


Local Franchising Authorities with Adelphia
Documents to Request U.S. Trustee to Appoint an Official Committee of Local Agencies - August 2002

"In the links to the documents, below, they reference a September 17, 2002, hearing date on the motion to create a local government committee. The hearing has been postponed until October 9, 2002, at the request of the United States Trustee."

SCAN NATOA and NATOA have jointly developed documents to present to the U.S. Trustee in the Adelphia bankruptcy to request the Trustee's formation of a Trustee-approved bankruptcy committee consisting of local government entities.

Your support is needed in demonstrating to the Trustee that an official committee of local government entities is needed, and that your community supports this action and desires to be represented by any such authorized committee.

Please download the following documents - each has a choice of .pdf or Word

RESOLUTION COVER LETTER - seeking support of the formation of a local government committee by the US Trustee
Resolution Cover Letter - Local Governments - Word Document

Resolution Cover Letter - Local Governments - .pdf

NATOA/SCAN NATOA Letter to Adelphia seeking support.
Exhibit A  - Adelphia Bankruptcy - Word Document

Exhibit A - Adelphia Bankruptcy - .pdf

Response from Adelphia to NATOA/SCAN NATOA letter.
Exhibit B  - Adelphia Bankruptcy - Word Document

Exhibit B - Adelphia Bankruptcy - .pdf

Resolution for local governments to adopt in support.
Exhibit C  - Adelphia Bankruptcy - Word Document

Exhibit C  - Adelphia Bankruptcy - .pdf

U.S. Trustee Letter requesting the formation of a local government committee.
U.S. Trustee Letter - Word Document

U.S. Trustee Letter - .pdf

ACTION ALERT - Seeking members support for the creation of a local government committee by the United States Trustee.
Action Alert Adelphia - Word Document

Action Alert Adelphia - .pdf

If you have questions, please contact SCAN NATOA President Lori Panzino at 909.387.9600, lpanzino@sdd.sbcounty.gov or NATOA Executive Director Libby Beaty at 703.506.3275, lbeaty@natoa.org.

Please give these documents your timely consideration.

....and please share with all other Adelphia communities.

Thank you.

Michael J. Friedman
Board Member, SCAN NATOA
for Lori Panzino, President SCAN NATOA

Summary of July 22, 2002 SCAN NATOA meeting 
Interim CEO Erland E. (Erkie) Kailbourne
and Vice President of Legal Affairs Randall D. Fisher

click to download in Microsoft Word

Handouts from June 20, 2002 Adelphia Meeting in Ontario

TV Technology Byliner

Matrox Digisuite LE Breathes New Life into Commuity Cable Channel

DPS Velocity 7

Matrox Makes the Cut

Matrox Digisuite Takes Its Harware to the Max

Letter From Jane Mago Re: FCC Amicus Brief

you must have Adobe Acrobat to view

City of Auburn, City of Des moines,
 City of tacoma
  Qwest Corporation,

ALTRIO COMMUNICATIONS Enters the Los Angeles Telecommunications Market

October 25, 2000, GLENDALE, CA: Altrio Communications, Inc., today announced the close of its first major round of financing to operate as a full-service broadband communications provider in the Southern California residential market. “Altrio is now poised to become the premier provider of voice,
video, and high speed-data services to Los Angeles area neighborhoods,” said
David Rozzelle, CEO. Initial funding for Altrio was provided by Frontenac
Company, a Chicago-based private equity firm.

Altrio is particularly proud of the distinguished group of equity investors
who have collectively committed $125 Million to this phase of Altrio’s
business plan. The investor group is led by Frontenac Company and Bessemer
Holdings. Other institutional investors include Soros Private Equity
Partners, SSB Capital Partners (the private equity investment fund affiliate
of Salomon Smith Barney), Royal Bank Capital Partners (the private equity
arm of Royal Bank Financial Group), Bank of America Capital Investors (the
private equity investment group of Bank of America), and Grove Street
Advisors (whose largest limited partner is CalPERS). The equity commitment
will be supported by senior debt in an amount up to $150 Million to fully
fund Altrio’s initial phase.

One of the unique characteristics of this company is its focus on Southern
California communities. “Unlike other competitive providers in the market –
who are seeking franchises in dozens of markets in many states – Altrio is
dedicated to developing a regional network in cooperation with local
communities in the Los Angeles area,” said Jim Crawford, a Managing Partner
of Frontenac Company.

Altrio’s other lead investor agreed. “It is the local nature of Altrio’s
business focus that made this competitive broadband opportunity so
interesting,” said Adam Godfrey, a General Partner in Bessemer Holdings. “We
believe the strength of the management team and its familiarity with the Los
Angeles market are advantages that other providers will not have.”

Planning for the Altrio Communications network is underway, and construction
will begin in several months. Altrio’s network is designed to provide
residential customers with an information capacity and reliability that
surpasses existing telephone, data and cable television networks now in
operation, due to its fiber-rich architecture and its extensive redundancy

Altrio’s senior management team includes David Rozzelle, CEO; Ted Liebst,
CFO; and Dave Large, CTO; formerly the principals of Media Connections Group
and all former executives with InterMedia Partners, with a total of 75 years
experience in the cable television industry. They will work with an
experienced team of professionals including Steve Ross, Altrio’s General
Counsel and the former Chief of the Cable Television Branch of the FCC; Bill
Kostka, Altrio’s Vice President of Engineering, who recently supervised
cable modem certification at CableLabs; Brenda Trainor, Altrio’s Vice
President, Public Policy and a former Board Member of the National
Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors; and Eric Hart, Vice
President of Outside Plant, who has been in the cable industry for over 20
years and has held technical management positions for the last ten years.

Altrio Communications, Inc., is a Delaware corporation with headquarters in
Glendale, CA.


Supplemental information regarding the investors, and company background
information is available by calling Nancy Iles at 818-552-4267.

County of San Bernardino
Right Of Way Questionnaire.doc

City Council Meetings Live On-line in Santa Monica
by Keith A. Kurtz and Roslyn Wythe

So, somebody thinks that your municipal television broadcast ought to be on the Web. Once you get past your initial reaction (how are we ever going to do that?), you will probably be thinking about why this service is considered valuable.

After all, how many people in town can there be who have access to the World Wide Web, do not have cable TV, and want to watch your channel? We were thinking just that when two citizens sent unsolicited E-mail asking if we broadcast CityTV on the Internet. Both explained that they did not subscribe to cable TV but would like to watch the City Council meetings without having to come to City Hall (Council meetings have long been broadcast on the local college radio station, KCRW). OK. Point taken. There is demand.

There are, of course, two important groups that do not normally see the cable broadcast. First is anyone who is outside of the City during a Council meeting. This includes interested parties not based in the City, residents traveling that day, and staff who live outside the City. The second group is staff who need to be present for only a portion of the meeting. With the meeting broadcast available on their desktops, these busy people can easily work in their offices until needed in the Council Chamber.


Having decided to move forward, we looked for other cities already offering this service. Nearby Torrance, California is broadcasting full time on the web. Two telephone calls put us in touch with the staffer who set up the server and maintains the service. Torrance, we learned, is running the RealNetworks server on an Intel based computer serving an audio stream optimized for modem users. In simpler terms, they are using a computer similar to the PCs on staff desktops, only more powerful. They purchased software from RealNetworks and chose to provide a signal best suited to users dialing into their Internet Service Provider (ISP) using a modem.

There are two leading software products that will capture an audio/video signal and "stream" it to the Internet, RealNetworks RealSystem G2 and Microsoft Netshow. The RealNetworks product has a number of technical advantages while the Microsoft software is free. Both require that the user download and install a free "plug-in" on their own computer. Note that since RealNetworks has most of the streaming media market share, it is more likely that users will have already installed the RealNetworks software. 

The RealNetworks basic server, G2, bundled with Real Producer Pro, is sold on a tiered pricing system depending upon how many streams, or simultaneous users, are required. When we investigated, we learned that the RealNetworks product was free for up to 25 streams, moderately priced for up to 40 streams, and relatively expensive beyond that.

Why pay RealNetworks for software that Microsoft is giving away? RealNetworks technology provides a more efficient and straightforward method for simultaneously broadcasting different quality streams without adding significant administrative effort. This makes it possible to offer streams optimized for both modem and network users with virtually no additional system resources or complexity. Despite the availability of ISDN, cable modems and DSL, most home users are still accessing the Internet using a modem. Many business users and almost everyone in Santa Monica City government has high speed network access to the Internet. The RealNetworks server will actually transmit more data, which provides a better quality picture, on a network optimized stream.

The RealNetworks Server also has the ability to adjust its signal based on network load for each stream. That is, when things get congested, there is a fancy compression that occurs and a slightly degraded signal is transmitted that can wend its way through a crowded network more easily. This is similar to pulling a motorcycle out of your trunk when traffic backs up on the freeway. You can't carry as much stuff, but you don't get slowed down either. Not slowing down is very important during a live broadcast. For all of the above reasons, we elected to purchase the RealNetworks Server with a 40 stream license.


RealNetworks recommends that two servers be used, especially if multiple optimizations will be employed. One server needs to be connected directly to the television signal and is used to "capture," or encode the signal into a digital format. The second server is used to stream the signal onto the Internet. While this can all be done with one server, using two computers helps spread the load and assure that there are no service interruptions when usage gets heavy.

Consistent with Santa Monica City policy, we solicited bids for and purchased two Hewlett-Packard servers. Anticipating future growth, both are dual processor capable but contain only one CPU. Both came network ready and generously equipped with RAM and disk storage. The more RAM, the better for video processing!

For the web server, we chose a HP LPR NetServer equipped with the Windows NT operating system and the Microsoft IIS Web Server. The video capture server is the lower cost HP Kayak multimedia workstation. The Kayak comes with an audio capture circuit similar to a Sound Blaster, but we had to purchase a video capture card. RealNetworks recommends some specific video cards, the best of which we thought was the Wavetech TV-PCI product. 

Unfortunately, the Kayak's extensive multimedia capabilities used up all of the interrupt request (IRQ) choices available on the Wavetech card. After three days of trying, we reluctantly decided to try a different card. The Matrox Rainbow Runner video capture card connects directly to the computer's video display card and is working well. We discovered the hard way that it was necessary to disable the Kayak's video power saving mode which automatically shut down our broadcast after 15 minutes. Another complication was that we had to replace Windows NT with Windows 98 on the Kayak to accommodate the video capture card.

We purchased a rack mounted VCR and 13 inch television monitor along with all of the cables needed to connect everything. Century Communications, the local cable franchise, dropped a line into our computer room. We connect the feed from Century directly to the VCR where the signal is split into audio and video. These, in turn, are run to the Kayak for capture. The Kayak puts the digitized stream onto our LAN where it is accessed by the LPR Server and streamed onto the Internet. A composite RF line is run from the antenna output of the VCR to the television to monitor the signal. All equipment is mounted in a 19 inch rack with a shared computer monitor and keyboard.


We are enough concerned about the load on our network that we are "netcasting" only during City Council meetings. The video stream requires considerable network capacity and we felt it necessary to restrict use to the evening hours when internal network usage is at a minimum. Note that Torrance is running their netcast full time with no reported problems. Still, we opted for the more conservative approach. We expect to be able to netcast CityTV full time once a planned network upgrade is completed.

The service is publicized both on CityTV and in City publications. Our development efforts are presently focused on developing programmable controls for the netcast as well as improving the size and quality of the video broadcast. 

Today, nobody asks why we should offer this service. Rather, the public and staff are clamoring for service enhancements. This, we think, is the mark of a successful program. We are reaching an appreciative and attentive audience beyond the city limits. The City of Santa Monica's netcast has proved itself an integral element in the electronic delivery of electronic services and information.


Click Here to got to National NATOA's web site for info on
Portland, Pasadena, the FCC and more!


June 18, 1999: The City of Los Angeles releases 53 page staff report recommending that the City not presently order cable operators to unbundle their internet offerings, but further recommending that the marketplace be closely monitored, and made other related recommendations. The entire staff report, in Adobe PDF format, is available when you CLICK HERE. It's interesting to note that as of the same date (June 18) the City's Information Technology Agency Board no long had a quorum to conduct any future meetings due to the 3rd Board Member resignation in 7 days. Keep an eye on the trades.

June 16, 1999: AT&T has (not suprisingly) filed for an expedited treatment of an appeal to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn Judge Panner's ruling, discussed and linked below. Portland is expected to oppose AT&T's application for expedited treatment.

To hear AT&T's 41 minute audio PR conference call on the appeal
(You must have RealAudio Player 5 to hear it, but the download is free. Follow the link.)

To download AT&T executive summary of their appeal

To download AT&T's entire appeal

here's the link to the Mt. Hood CRC AT&T/TCI Transfer page.



Mt. Hood Cable Regulatory Commission wins big in the AT&T Suit Regarding Open Access

As reported directly to NATOA by David Olson, Judge Owen Panner granted summary judgment on June 3 to the Local Governments on every material issue. The Judge concluded that open access is within the authority of local government to impose to protect competition. He affirmed that Congress has specifically recognized the power of local franchising authorities to preserve competition for cable services. The franchising authoritys power to prohibit a change of control includes the lesser power to impose condition on a transfer.

The open access condition is not a common carrier requirement. The condition does not limit the cable operator's use of subscriber equipment or transmission technology, nor does it impose requirements concerning the content of cable services. There is no free speech violation because AT&T is already carrying all ISPs.

According to Judge Panner, "I conclude that the mandatory access provision is related to AT&T's legal qualifications to assume control of TCI's cable franchises." The Judge said, "I agree with Defendants that the open access requirement does not conflict with the terms of the franchise agreements, and that Plaintiffs have no contractual right under the franchise agreements to exclude competitors from the cable modem platform." Finally, the Judge said, "The franchise agreements do not limit the factors that the City and County may consider in
deciding whether to approve a change in control. Defendants motion for summary judgment is granted."

According to David Olson, "It's a win on all points, going away!"

The entire formatted text of the decision, in PDF format, can be downloaded by
clicking here!

Note...this is a 409Kb download, but worth every byte!

If you don't have the Adobe PDF reader...you should! Click on the icon below:

getacro.gif (712 bytes)

And, if you're wondering about AT&T's take on the ruling,
here's a click to their news release. Also, see the June 16th update above!



For immediate release 21 June 1999
Contact: Sydney Rubin 202/244-1200

Mayor Supports AT&T Controlling Internet Cable Access in LA, Officials Resign in Protest Over Lack of Competition That Will Harm Consumers

WASHINGTON, D.C. (21 June 1999) -- A report issued Friday by the city's
Information Technology Commission rejected a plan that would have required AT&T to open its cable network to allow competing Internet Service Providers to buy access to cable lines. AT&T and
the cable company it owns are fighting attempts to create an open, competitive
system. News reports say AT&T has enjoyed the support of Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan.

The "Broadband Access Report" was to have been voted on today by the Board of Information Technology Commissioners and sent to City Council for review. The meeting was cancelled Friday after the
third resignation by a member of the five-member board in protest over the staff-written
report that failed to require competition. "The city cannot even hold a meeting to vote on this
report because people of conscience would rather quit than vote for a plan that is so blatantly anti-consumer and anti-business," said Greg Simon, co-executive director of the openNET Coalition. OpenNET is
a group of more than 70 Internet Service Providers nationwide battling to keep the
Internet the affordable, dynamic, open medium that consumers now enjoy.

Last week, Information Technology Commissioners Alan  Arkatov, Joyce Emerson and Robert Duggan resigned. Arkatov and Emerson had served as president and vice-president of the Board, appointed by
the mayor. The Los Angeles Times reported that Riordan's support for AT&T forced the resignations.

Arktov and Emerson left without commenting on their resignations, but Duggan resigned in a scathing letter that challenged the mayor's position which fails to protect consumers and will lead to high prices and poor service. "The city should not . . . kowtow to the wishes of an industry seeking monopoly power at the expense of all Angelenos," Duggan wrote.

"In the future, cable will most likely become the most important electronic conduit to homes. We have an opportunity to protect consumers  by keeping this important conduit open," he wrote.
The report recommends that the city do nothing while AT&T builds its cable system into one that not only offers traditional television services but also takes monopoly control of the next generation of
Internet service. Consumers will depend on high-speed cable access lines for telephone, entertainment and a full range of other services.

OpenNET coalition member Bob Adkins of DigiLink Internet Services in Marina del Rey, California, said, "AT&T's plans will hurt small business and hurt consumers. There are more than 5,000 ISPs
competing in the United States today and this competition has led to lower prices and
more innovative services. An AT&T monopoly threatens all of this."

Adkins noted that prices have fallen dramatically in the competitive Internet marketplace over the last few years. Meanwhile, cable companies that hold monopoly franchises in most American cities have
increased cable rates 22 percent over the last three years. "What is happening in Los Angeles is happening in all the cities where AT&T is buying cable franchises and seeking to avoid competition. People throughout the country should be concerned because if the cable monopoly controls high-speed Internet access it will dictate what you pay, how you get online, and the Web sites you see," said Marc Jacobson of Prodigy Internet. "Consumer choice will be history."

With its purchase of cable companies such as TCI and MediaOne, AT&T will have full or partial control of more than 60 percent of all cable service into American homes, including homes in Los Angeles. Billions of
dollars and the future of the Internet hang on the decisions being made by cities whether to require the AT&T-owned local cable company to sell competing Internet Service Providers access to the cable network.

Last week, the CEO of AT&T's Broadband and Internet Services, Leo Hindery, told Wall Street analysts in a private briefing that AT&T's deals to consolidate and control the cable industry would fundamentally
change the nature of the Internet. Hindery said AT&T's recent activities  in cities like Los Angeles would lead to regional monopolies that would mark "the end of an industry as I know it. I'm about six weeks away from
doing what I want to do," USA Today reported.

"We've seen what Mr. Hindery has to say about how AT&T will monopolize the cable industry and the cable Internet," said openNET's Simon. "That's what scares us, and it should worry consumers as well."

SCAN NATOA Newsletter Article from January 1999

The Latest Access Question

by Paul Janis and Bob Jystad

A new ally has entered the old fight to break open cable systems. Alongside local broadcasters and unaffiliated cable programmers now stand the Internet Service Providers (ISPs). Clad in the garb of nondiscrimination, competition and consumer choice, ISPs would thrust the spear of "open access" into the wounds left by leased access, program access and must carry. It is an open question whether or not this bravado will benefit local governments and consumers - a question we won't even try to answer here.

What is the issue? Is the goal of "open access" a cable modem architecture that permits multiple providers simultaneously to provide services over the platform? Or, is the goal of "open access" to unbundle Internet access from content so that consumers do not pay twice to use a preferred ISP over the cable system?

However the issue is framed, it arises in the context of a global Internet greedily in search of bandwidth. The conventional dial-up narrowband Internet access service provided through the twisted-pair telephone line is simply no match for the high speed broadband service now being provided by many cable companies under such trade names as @Home, Roadrunner, Pipeline, and MediaOne Express.

Despite the apparent dissimilarity between video programming and Internet access service, cable companies are eager to characterize their Internet access products as cable services in order to avoid the regulatory requirements of Title II of the Communications Act of 1934. Cable administrators everywhere should be flattered that, given their choices, cable operators prefer their regulators to be local franchising authorities (LFAs) rather than the FCC or a state PUC. Until the FCC or a court rules otherwise, cable administrators need to be prepared to protect the interests of consumers of cable-based Internet access services.

One way to frame the issue is to focus on the cable operators' uniform practice of bundling high speed data service with Internet content. In the dial-up world, the user provides his or her own modem and, through a conventional telephone line, links to an ISP who provides access to the Internet. Typically, but not always, the ISP also provides a content service which may or may not be bundled with access to the Internet. If the user purchases Internet access without a bundled content service, the user must obtain a content service from a separate provider. The user is free to contract with various providers for each of these elements separately.

In the cable modem world, the cable company provides the modem, the link to the Internet, and content laden home page. All of the Internet service elements provided by the cable operator are bundled and available only at a bundled rate.

Because of the bundled nature of cable modem services, a cable subscriber using a cable modem is required to subscribe to the content service provided by the cable operator or an affiliate (e.g., @Home, Roadrunner, etc.). The user is free to purchase another, unaffiliated content service (e.g., America Online, Mindspring, etc.), but this involves a second payment for that content service. The superior market position of the affiliated content provider is apparent.

The technical and market superiority of broadband is not lost on the providers of Internet content who are unaffiliated with cable companies. Some commentators in the industry fear the affiliated content providers will eventually dominate the market in precisely the same manner that Microsoft's bundled Internet browser software threatens to dominate the browser market.

This description of the issue assumes that it is properly characterized as "unbundling." Cable modem providers prefer this characterization because they think it molds the issue as a Title II issue and lets them rest on the defense that LFAs cannot treat cable systems as common carriers. It is fairly easy to counter this analysis even if you choose to characterize the issue as one of unbundling. Title VI contains numerous access-type provisions that, simply because they tend to produce more "open" cable systems, do not transform cable operators into common carriers.

ISPs have tended to avoid this analysis. Rather, they frame the issue as an issue of Aopen access.@ They describe the cable modem platform as it is currently constructed as a closed platform that is only accessible by the cable modem provider. In their analysis, there are no technical impediments to opening the platform. Subscribers could select unaffiliated ISPs which, through the use of additional equipment housed at the cable system's headend, could provide their own high speed Internet access service to those users.

Should LFAs be concerned about the issue, however framed? If so, what actions should LFAs be considering? The answers ultimately depend on (1) whether Internet access really is a cable service, as represented by the cable operators, (2) how broadly one construes the market for Internet access services, and (3) whether the LFA wishes to regulate the market for Internet access services in the hope of maintaining a level playing field.

In December, 1998 the Mt. Hood (Oregon) Cable Regulatory Commission, the City of Portland, and Multnomah County all ordered TCI to provide ISPs with open, nondiscriminatory access to its cable modem platform as a condition of approval of transfer of local cable franchises to the control of AT&T. A number of provisions of federal law have been used to justify such an action, for example:

Section 612 of the Cable Act requires cable operators to set aside up to 15 percent of their channel capacity for commercial use by persons unaffiliated with the cable operator. The argument is that ISPs could legitimately offer a commercial service over bandwidth reserved for leased access programmers without disrupting the cable system or diminishing the amount of capacity exclusively reserved to the operator. Note that "commercial use" is defined in 612 as "the provision of video programming." Accordingly, the strength of this argument hinges on an assumption that Internet service as a cable service constitutes a kind of video programming.

Section 613 of the Cable Act permits LFAs to consider the anticompetitive effects of the ownership or control of a franchise in approving a transfer. If, not to name names, @Home's relationship with TCI/AT&T is such that its presence in the franchise effectively would wipe out competitor ISPs, the LFA arguably could base a decision not to approve a transfer on that possibility. Despite the strength of this argument, which is appealing, the devil is in the details. First, an LFA must have a factual basis by which it determines that competition is threatened. Second, that basis should be linked to competition in the franchise at issue and not to competition in the national market.

Section 636's version of a "savings clause" goes to the heart of the debate. This section preserves all franchising authority "to the extent consistent with this title." Because Internet service over cable is not clearly addressed by the Cable Act, the savings clause reserves the LFA's authority to place permissible conditions on the provision of cable modem services such as open access to the cable modem platform.

This argument requires you to defeat every argument brought by the cable operators that, in fact, the Cable Act does address Internet service, albeit indirectly, and bars LFAs from imposing virtually any condition, let alone open access. Along these lines, they will refer to open access as "unbundling" and will cite Section 621 which forbids treatment of cable systems as common carriers and Section 624 which prohibits LFAs from establishing requirements for video programming or information services. As you might imagine, these arguments also subject their proponents to a variety of pitfalls.

However you frame it, the issue is important and, undoubtedly, will take us well into the new millenium.

1) Singsen v. Television Signal Corporation

On June 24, 1998, Division 2 of the First District Court of Appeals in
California ruled that subscribers have a state law unfair business
practices claim against cable operators for failing to provide free
cable service to public building as required by its franchise even
though the city released the obligation. The court rejected contract
and third-party beneficiary claims by the plaintiffs. The plaintiff's
attorney appears to be chasing an $80,000 attorney fee claim, rejection
of which was reversed in the 2-1 opinion reported at 64 Cal. App. 4th
1437 (1998) . Interesting case.


On 9/3/98 the FCC's Office of Plans and Policy released a 118 page report on regulatory issues connected to Internet over Cable. That report highlights regulatory issues and directions the Commission might consider and take. MUST READING. Here is a quote from the news release:

"After describing features and functions of the Internet and the communications capabilities it makes possible, the paper addresses the existing regulatory framework for wireline communications services under Titles I, II and VI of the Communications Act. The paper concludes that the FCC could find that certain cable-provided Internet services come within the revised definition of cable services under Title VI the Act, while Internet access services provided by telecommunications carriers over common carrier facilities are treated differently under existing statutory and FCC requirements. It concludes with a discussion of the broader policy issues arising from this new communications medium, and identifies some potential regulatory alternatives for addressing these issues."

Here is the link to the FCC's News Release on the paper.

From there you can link directly to the Adobe PDF of the document.

Thanks to NATOAN Fred Polner, Esq. for the heads-up.

Board of Directors Member Brenda Trainor wrote an op-ed piece for Multichannel News in their August 24, 1998 edition. CLICK HERE to read her "Forum" article titled, "Municipal Networks: An Interesting Option" Reprinted with Permission, Multichannel News, August 24, 1998

FCC/Local and State Government Advisory Committee and CTIA Settlement on Zoning Moratoria "Give Peace A Chance" -CTIA

On August 5th, at a Washington D.C. press conference, the Chairman of the FCC announced a settlement with the wireless industry over the CTIA's petition to preempt all zoning moratoria relating to wireless telecommunications facilities. As a result of the settlement the CTIA is WITHDRAWING its preemption petition. The FCC's local government web page has the Chairman's statement, Ken Fellman's statement, and the text of the agreement.

(www.fcc.gov/statelocal) (CTIA Press Release)


If you are a NATOA member, you can place an on-line order for the CD-ROM at $75 per
copy using a credit card or government P.O. Non-members can purchase a copy using our on-line order form for $125 a copy. Requires a CD-ROM, Windows 95, 98 or NT, Internet Explorer 4 (included on the disk), and a rye sense of humor (not included on disk).

Click here to have Webbie Jonathan Kramer give you a special virtual tour of the CD-ROM!

Click here to jump to the on-line order form

Now available from the FCC is their digital TV fact sheet on tower siting. CLICK HERE to go to that page. Thanks to Ken Fellman, Chair of the FCC's State & Local Advisory Committee, for announcing the link, then just a few hours old, to the attendees of NATOA's Denver Regional Conference during his Keynote speech.

FCC MO&O Regarding Franchise Fee Pass-Through On Line:
Click here for the text version


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