N.J. League of Municipalities fights dereg bill

As the battle over the telecom deregulation bill heats up, Piscataway Mayor Brian Wahler, chair of the N.J. League of Municipalities’ Telecommunications Committee, issued a statement opposition to S2664, the Market Competition Consumer Choice Act.

“The League hopes that the proponents of changing the systemwide cable franchise law will see that municipalities have always been, and remain, primary partners in New Jersey’s cable franchises,” he said in a release Wednesday.  “Any inquiry into changing such franchises must include honest conversations with New Jersey’s municipalities about communities’ cable related needs.

“Today the League of Municipalities continues to oppose S2664, the Market Competition Consumer Choice Act, because it will result in the loss of important benefits and service to which communities are currently entitled. 

Among other reasons, the League is against the bill because it says the bill reduces the obligation of a cable franchise to provide cable and Internet connections to municipal and school buildings at no charge; and the bill does not require a return feed to allow cable-casting of live municipal events.

N.J. League of Municipalities fights dereg bill