ORDINANCE NO. 455U
AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES AMENDING CHAPTER 13.12 OF TITLE 13 OF THE RANCHO PALOS VERDES MUNICIPAL CODE BY ADDING NEW SECTIONS 13.12.140 AND 13.12.150 RELATING TO A SUPPORT FEE FOR LOCAL CABLE USAGE AND SPECIAL PROVISIONS APPLICABLE TO HOLDERS OF STATE VIDEO FRANCHISES AND DECLARING THE URGENCY THEREOF.
THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES DOES ORDAIN AS FOLLOWS:
Section 1. Chapter 13.12 of Title 13 (“Telecommunications Regulatory Ordinance”) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code is amended by adding a new Section 13.12.140 to read as follows:
13.12.140 Fee for Support of Local Cable Usage
A fee paid to the City is hereby established for the support of public, educational, and governmental access facilities and activities within the City. Unless a higher percentage is authorized by applicable state or federal law, this fee shall be one percent (1%) of a Grantee’s gross annual cable service revenues, as that term is defined below in Section 13.12.400, or in the Grantee’s franchise agreement, or in applicable provisions of state or federal law. This fee is also applicable to a state video franchise holder operating within the City, which shall pay to the City one percent (1%) of its gross revenues, as defined in California Public Utilities Code Section 5860.
Section 2. Chapter 13.12 of Title 13 (“Telecommunications Regulatory Ordinance”) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code is amended by adding a new Section 13.12.150 to read as follows:
13.12.150 Special Provisions Applicable to Holders of State Video Franchises
A. Franchise Fee. A state video franchise holder operating in the City shall pay to the City a franchise fee that is equal to five percent (5%) of the gross revenues of that state video franchise holder. The term “gross revenues” shall be defined as set forth in Public Utilities Code Section 5860.
B. Audit Authority. Not more than once annually, the City may examine and perform an audit of the business records of a holder of a state video franchise to ensure compliance with all applicable statutes and regulations related to the computation and payment of franchise fees.
C. Customer Service Penalties Under State Video Franchises.
1. The holder of a state video franchise shall comply with all applicable state and federal customer service and protection standards pertaining to the provision of video service.
2. The City shall monitor a state video franchise holder’s compliance with state and federal customer service and protection standards. The City will provide to the state video franchise holder written notice of any material breaches of applicable customer service and protection standards, and will allow the state video franchise holder 30 days from receipt of the notice to remedy the specified material breach. Material breaches not remedied within the 30-day time period will be subject to the following monetary penalties to be imposed by the City in accordance with state law:
a. For the first occurrence of a violation, a monetary penalty of $500 shall be imposed for each day the violation remains in effect, not to exceed $1500 for each violation.
b. For a second violation of the same nature within 12 months, a monetary penalty of $1000 shall be imposed for each day the violation remains in effect, not to exceed $3000 for each violation.
c. For a third or further violation of the same nature within 12 months, a monetary penalty of $2500 shall be imposed for each day the violation remains in effect, not to exceed $7,500 for each violation.
3. A state video franchise holder may appeal a monetary penalty assessed by the City within 60 days. After relevant evidence and testimony is received, and staff reports are submitted, the City Council will vote to either uphold or vacate the monetary penalty. The City Council’s decision on the imposition of a monetary penalty shall be final.
D. City Response to State Video Franchise Applications.
1. Applicants for state video franchises within the boundaries of the City must concurrently provide to the City complete copies of any application or amendments to applications filed with the California Public Utilities Commission. One complete copy must be provided to the City Clerk.
2. The City will provide any appropriate comments to the California Public Utilities Commission regarding an application or an amendment to an application for a state video franchise.
E. PEG Channel Capacity. A state video franchise holder that uses the public rights-of-way shall designate sufficient capacity on its network to enable the carriage of at least three public, educational, or governmental (PEG) access channels.
1. PEG access channels shall be for the exclusive use of the City or its designees to provide public, educational, or governmental programming.
2. Advertising, underwriting, or sponsorship recognition may be carried on the PEG access channels for the purpose of funding PEG-related activities.
3. The PEG access channels shall be carried on the basic service tier.
4. To the extent feasible, the PEG access channels shall not be separated numerically from other channels carried on the basic service tier, and the channel numbers for the PEG access channels shall be the same channel numbers used by the incumbent cable operator unless prohibited by federal law.
5. After the initial designation of PEG access channel numbers, the channel numbers shall not be changed without the prior written consent of the City, unless the change is required by federal law.
6. Each PEG access channel shall be capable of carrying a National Television System Committee (NTSC) television signal.
F. Interconnection. Where technically feasible, a state video franchise holder and an incumbent cable operator shall negotiate in good faith to interconnect their networks for the purpose of providing PEG access channel programming. Interconnection may be accomplished by direct cable, microwave link, satellite, or other reasonable method of connection. State video franchise holders and incumbent cable operators shall provide interconnection of the PEG access channels on reasonable terms and conditions and may not withhold the interconnection. If a state video franchise holder and an incumbent cable operator cannot reach a mutually acceptable interconnection agreement, the City may require the incumbent cable operator to allow the state video franchise holder to interconnect its network with the incumbent’s network at a technically feasible point on the holder’s network as identified by the holder. If no technically-feasible point for interconnection is available, the state video franchise holder shall make an interconnection available to the channel originator and shall provide the facilities necessary for the interconnection. The cost of any interconnection shall be borne by the state video franchise holder requesting the interconnection unless otherwise agreed to by the parties.
G. Emergency Alert System and Emergency Overrides. A state video franchise holder must comply with the Emergency Alert System requirements of the Federal Communications Commission in order that emergency messages may be distributed over the holder’s network. Provisions in City-issued franchises authorizing the City to provide local emergency notifications shall remain in effect, and shall apply to all state video franchise holders in the City for the duration of the City-issued franchise, or until the term of the franchise would have expired had it not been terminated pursuant to subdivision (m) of Section 5840 of the California Public Utilities Code, or until January 1, 2009, whichever is later.
Section 3. Urgency Findings. The Digital Infrastructure and Video Competition Act of 2006 (Act), became effective on January 1, 2007. The California Public Utilities Commission has adopted processing regulations and began accepting applications for State Video Franchises on March 2, 2007. On March 5, 2007, the City received notification that Verizon submitted an application for a State Video Franchise. The City received notification on March 7, 2007 that AT&T has also filed an application for a State Video Franchise. The California Public Utilities Commission PUC has up to 30 days to review the application for completeness and an additional 14 days to make a decision on the application, resulting in a maximum 44 day processing period. It is therefore in the City’s best interest to revise Chapter 13.12 of the Municipal Code to be consistent with the Digital Infrastructure and Video Competition Act of 2006 before any new State Video Franchises are established within the City’s boundaries. Based on the foregoing, the City Council hereby finds that this ordinance is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public health, safety and welfare, hereby declares the facts constituting the urgency, and passes this ordinance by at least a four-fifths vote of the City Council. Accordingly, this measure is adopted immediately upon introduction pursuant to Government Code Section 36934 and shall take effect immediately pursuant to Government Code Section 36937(b).
Section 4. The City Clerk shall cause this Ordinance to be posted in three (3) public places in the City within fifteen (15) days after its passage, in accordance with the provisions of Section 36933 of the Government Code. The City Clerk shall further certify to the adoption and posting of this Ordinance, and shall cause this Ordinance and its certification, together with proof of posting, to be entered in the Book of Ordinances of the Council of this City.
Section 5. This Ordinance shall go into effect and be in full force and effect at 12:01 a.m. on the first (1st) day after its passage.
PASSED, APPROVED, AND ADOPTED this 20th day of March 2007.
/s/ Thomas D. Long
/s/ Carolynn Petru
STATE OF CALIFORNIA )
COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES )ss
CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES )
I, Carolynn Petru, City Clerk of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes, do hereby certify that the whole number of members of the City Council of said City is five; that the foregoing Ordinance No. 455U was duly and regularly adopted by the City Council of said City at a regular meeting thereof held on March 20, 2007, and that the same was passed and adopted by the following roll call vote:
AYES: Clark, Gardiner, Stern, Wolowicz, and Mayor Long