TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL
FROM: CITY MANAGER
DATE: JUNE 20, 2006
SUBJECT: “NO” ON AB 2987 COALITION.
Consider joining the League of California Cities “No” on AB 2987 Coalition.
AB 2987 (Núñez/Levine) would create a new statewide franchise for cable and video service providers, issued by the California Department of Consumer Affairs. The bill's supporters claim that AB 2987 will guarantee "speed to market" for telephone companies that want to offer video services that compete with cable companies. They argue that Increased competition will offer consumers lower rates and better service.
The League and the Telecom Equity Coalition (TEC) support competition, but are greatly concerned over a number of items the bill fails to address, including:
Failure to specify build-out schedules for new market entrants, thus allowing broadband providers to "cherry pick" who they wish to serve; failure to guarantee that local agencies will have the same rights to public access stations and broadband services to schools and libraries as can be negotiated under current cable television franchising authority; and failure to protect consumers.
The League has prepared a list of issues they have identified in AB 2987 describing the problems they see and the solutions. The League issue paper is attached.
The City Council previously addressed a letter to Assemblymember Karnette outlining their concerns about AB 2987, but the Assembly recently voted 77 – 0 in favor of the bill.
Councilman Clark has asked that City Council join the “No” on AB 2987 Coalition. A membership form is attached. In addition to joining the Coalition, Councilman Clark has proposed that the City provide materials and speakers for the Council of Homeowners Association, the Chamber of Commerce and the Rotary Club to inform them of the negative impacts AB 2987 will have on the City and its residents.
Attachment: Telecom Equity Coalition Membership Form