ACA Urges FCC to Grant Dual-Carriage Waivers to Smaller Systems

American Cable Association to Federal Communications Commission: Deny Request by National Association of Broadcasters, Association for Maximum Service Television

The American Cable Association asked the Federal Communications Commission to deny the request by broadcasters that the commission not grant smaller cable systems waivers from its dual-carriage rule.

The FCC voted last fall to require cable systems to carry TV stations in both analog and digital if that's what it takes to deliver a viewable signal after the transition to digital. Cable operators had earlier been required to deliver HD signals in HD.

The ACA, in a filing with the FCC opposing the request by the National Association of Broadcasters and the Association for Maximum Service Television, said the waiver policy was in the public interest

"Considering the number of channels devoured by programming and retransmission-consent tying and bundling, a significant number of these low-capacity systems are channel-locked or close to channel-locked and do not have capacity for new broadband and other advanced services," the ACA argued.

The ACA took issue with broadcasters' argument that the waiver process was not pro-consumer, saying that it gives smaller systems the capacity they need to deploy new broadband services and will reduce the cost of service to subscribers.