This blog will feature highlights of programming by Falls Cable Access, a not-for-profit organization located in Menomonee Falls High School.
Well, the recent signing of AB207 by the Governor introduced the deregulation of the video provider industry to Wisconsin residents. In a nutshell this is what it will mean to Menomonee Falls residents. The Village is no longer able to deal directly with the cable company on it's franchise agreements for use of the right of ways and roads. Any video provider meeting minimal requirements will sign a franchise agreement with the state. We will no longer be able to negotiate any extra perks for the village or school districts, no free Internet for schools or library, and no system for enforcement of customer service.
The Senate and Assembly did try to enforce the addition of Major Sports networks like NFL Network and Big Ten Network to all providers, (Sounds regulatory to me) but they will lose a long legal battle on that one. The Governor however did make some changes. He did not allow for lifetime franchise agreements, as the bill was written and did give some ability to the governing body to enforce some quality control. Providers will no longer have to show they are providing service to everyone in the village as the cable companies have for 25 years. It is apparent already as they are targeting the more affluent areas of the state and ignoring low income and hard to reach places. The bill was introduced to give people a choice but I will guarantee that the guy living in Some Place Little, Wisconsin will still only have one choice years from now. The only difference is he won't be able to talk to a customer service rep here in state they will be talking to Bob in Pakistan.