City law requires that cable companies support public access in return for use of public rights-of-way. But CAN TV channels are at risk of being left behind in the current cable franchise proceedings.
Public input is needed now to secure the future for public participation in cable.RCN’s franchise expired on 9/30/11. It is now operating with no franchise and no finalization of its agreement with CAN TV for the future. Cable revenues are strong, and now is the time for the City to get this right. 46 Aldermen agree, and signed a letter to RCN last month to get the CAN TV agreement done.But there’s still no deal for CAN TV. And that means no deal for the public—despite the fact that the Chicago public strongly supports the local programming and training that CAN TV provides.To secure cable company support of CAN TV and ensure that the public’s needs and interests are met in cable franchise renewals:Tell the City of Chicago to hold hearings for public input on enforcement of cable company obligations to the public, and to establish a real plan for future stability of CAN TV channels to support public needs.