The National Cable & Telecommunications Association and the American Cable Association have both called on the FCC to act on a petition on pole attachment rates before the Feb. 26 vote to reclassify ISPs as telecommunications services under Title II.
Cable operators argue that if the agency does reclassify broadband access under Title II regulations, as FCC chairman Tom Wheeler has said it will do, that could translate into higher pole-attachment rates, especially for smaller and medium-sized operators.
The telecom rate was traditionally higher than the cable rate. The FCC voted in 2011 to harmonize the rates, but the opportunity remained for pole owners to charge higher rates under some circumstances. The NCTA, Comptel and others sought to resolve that situation in a petition for reconsideration filed back in 2011, asking the FCC to insure that broadband providers can attach at the lowest rate available under FCC rules.