[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Supervisors of the Township of Hempfield 8-24-1993 as Ord. No. 93-12. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former Ch. A92, Cable Television Franchise, comprised of Art. I, adopted 7-14-1980 by Ord. No. 80-20, and Art. II, adopted 8-12-1985 by Ord. No. 85-18, as amended. See § A92-26.
For the purposes of this ordinance, the following terms, phrases, words and abbreviations shall have the meanings ascribed to them as follows:
- An entity which owns or controls, is owned or controlled by, or is under common ownership with the grantee.
- BASIC CABLE
- The lowest priced tier of service which includes the retransmission of local broadcast television signals.
- CABLE ACT
- The Communications Act of 1934, as amended by the Cable Communications Policy Act of 1984 and the Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act of 1992 and as amended after the date hereof.
- CABLE SERVICE
- The one-way transmission to subscribers of video programming or other programming service, and subscriber interaction, if any, which is required for the selection of such video programming or any other lawful communication service.
- CABLE SYSTEM
- A system of antennas, cables, wires, lines of fiber optic cable, towers, waveguides or other conductors, converters, equipment or facilities used for providing, receiving, amplifying, storing, processing or distributing audio, video, digital or other forms of signals to and from subscribers.
- The Federal Communications Commission or successor governmental entity thereto.
- The initial authorization or renewal thereof, issued by the franchising authority, whether such authorization is designated as a franchise, permit, license, resolution, contract, certificate or otherwise, which authorizes construction and operation of the cable system for the purpose of offering cable service or other service to subscribers.
- FRANCHISE AUTHORITY or FRANCHISING AUTHORITY
- The Township of Hempfield or the lawful successor, transferee or assignee thereof.
- TCI of Greensburg or the lawful successor, transferee or assignee thereof.
- GROSS SUBSCRIBER REVENUE
- The cable service revenue actually received from subscribers who receive cable service through that portion of the cable system located within the township. Excluded are any taxes on cable service which are imposed directly or indirectly on any township subscriber, by any governmental unit or agency, and which are collected by the grantee on behalf of such governmental unit or agency.
- An individual, partnership, association, joint-stock company, trust, corporation or governmental entity.
- PUBLIC WAY
- The surface of and the space above and below any public street, highway, freeway, bridge, land path, alley, court, boulevard, sidewalk, parkway, way, lane, public way, drive, circle or other public right-of-way, including public utility easements, dedicated utility strips or rights-of-way dedicated for compatible uses and any temporary or permanent fixtures or improvements located thereon now or hereafter held by the franchise authority in the service area which shall entitle the franchise authority and the grantee to the use thereof for the purpose of installing, operating, repairing and maintaining the cable system. "Public way" shall also mean any easement now or hereafter held by the franchise authority within the service area for the purpose of public travel or for utility or public service use dedicated for compatible uses and shall include other easements or rights-of-way as shall within their proper use and meaning entitle the franchise authority and the grantee to the use thereof for the purposes of installing or transmitting the grantee's cable service or other service over poles, wires, cables, conductors, ducts, conduits, vaults, manholes, amplifiers, appliances, attachments and other property as may be ordinarily necessary and pertinent to the cable system.
- SERVICE AREA
- The present municipal boundaries of the franchising authority and shall include any additions thereto by annexation or other legal names.
- A person or user of the cable system who lawfully receives cable services or other service therefrom with grantee's express permission.
- VIDEO PROGRAMMING
- Programming provided by or generally considered comparable to programming provided by a television broadcast station.
The proper officers of the franchise authority are herein authorized to:
Enter into an amended and restated cable system franchise agreement, hereinafter referred to as "agreement," with the grantee, a partnership, hereinafter referred to as "grantee," to grant a cable system franchise as herein described; and
Grant to the grantee a nonexclusive franchise as defined in the agreement to expire at 12:00 a.m. on January 1, 2011.
The grantee shall restore public ways and relocate at its own expense any of its property that interferes with traffic conditions, public safety, streets, sewers, drains, gas or water pipes or any other type of structure in conformity with said agreement.
If any third party requests that the property of the grantee be moved temporarily, then the grantee shall be paid in advance for the cost of the same in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
The grantee shall have the right to trim trees or other natural growth overhanging its system in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
The franchise authority shall have the right to use any of the poles and conduits of the grantee in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
The grantee shall install and maintain its cable system in an orderly and workmanlike manner and shall comply with applicable safety and fire codes in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
The cable system shall be installed underground where public utilities are required to install the same underground, but, in areas where the cable system is underground and aerial, then whether the cable system is installed underground or aerial shall be in the sole discretion of grantee, all in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
The cable system as presently constructed is hereby approved and the grantee is authorized to extend the cable system when 35 potential subscribers, each having a service place within the boundaries of the same one-mile extension of the existing aerial trunk cable, submit a petition to the grantee requesting cable service; then the grantee shall extend the system to such subscribers at no cost to said subscribers except the usual connection fee, provided that such extension is technically feasible and will not adversely affect the financial condition or market development of the cable system.
No subscriber to the system shall be refused service arbitrarily but, in areas where underground installation is requested when in such area aerial installation is standard or where there is more than 150 feet of distance from the cable system to the service place of the subscribers or a lesser density than stated in § A92-9 herein, the grantee may establish a special fee of the costs of materials, labor and easements in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
The grantee shall provide without charge one outlet of basic cable service to each office building of the franchise authority, each fire station, police station, the Greensburg Hempfield Library and all public schools, provided that such outlets shall not be used to sell or distribute cable services and provided that such buildings are within the required distance from feeder cable of the cable system, all in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
The cable system shall be allowed to be used for emergency and disaster information as provided for in the agreement.
Performance and technical standards of the construction, reconstruction, installing, operation, testing, maintenance and dismantling of the cable system shall be in conformity to law as provided for in said agreement.
On or before the fifth anniversary of the date of this agreement, the grantee agrees to rebuild the cable system to accommodate at least 54 channels.
Franchise fees shall be payable to the franchise authority by the grantee in an amount equal to 5% of the gross subscriber revenue and shall be paid annually and be paid by March 3l of each year with respect to the previous calendar year, all in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
In the event that the maximum percentage rate for franchise fees permitted by federal law is increased above 5%, then the percentage rate of the franchise fee provided for herein shall be increased to such higher maximum percentage rate, 7%, or the percentage rate of franchise fees which may lawfully be added to subscriber billings, whichever of the three foregoing alternatives is less.
The franchise authority shall have the right to audit the gross subscriber revenue of the grantee at any time upon at least 10 business days' prior written notice to the grantee as to the date and time at which the township wishes to conduct the audit. The audit shall take place at the office of the grantee at which the records of gross subscriber revenue are maintained. The audit shall be conducted at the township's sole cost and expense with exceptions as noted in said agreement.
The franchise authority may, upon initial and continued certification by the FCC, regulate basic cable rates and equipment only as permitted by the Cable Act or allow such regulation by the FCC as provided by the Cable Act.
Any renewal of the grantee's franchise shall be governed and comply with Section 626 of the Cable Act.
The grantee shall not transfer its right, title or interest in the agreement without the prior consent of the franchise authority, which such consent shall not be unreasonably withheld. Consent shall be granted or not granted in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
The grantee may perform technical tests of the system in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
The grantee agrees that the franchise authority may examine its books and records during normal business hours as provided for in the agreement.
The grantee agrees to maintain in full force and effect, at its own cost and expense, during the term of the agreement, commercial general liability insurance in the amount of $1,000,000 combined single limit for bodily injury and property damage. Such insurance shall be provided for in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
The grantee shall indemnify and hold harmless the franchise authority and its officers, board members and employees from any and all liabilities for any damages or claims resulting from property damage or bodily injury in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
The grantee shall not be required to obtain or maintain any bonds or other surety as a condition of being awarded the franchise or continuing its existence.
The grantee's rights concerning violations, the curing of violations, the right to a proper hearing and enforcement shall be in conformity with the provisions of the agreement.
All other sections, provisions, paragraphs and promises existing in the agreement are incorporated herein as if the same were specifically set forth, the agreement being dated the same date as the passage of this ordinance. In the event of any conflict or inconsistency between the provisions of this ordinance and the agreement, the provisions of the agreement shall govern. No modification or amendment of this ordinance shall supersede the provisions of the agreement unless a similar modification or amendment is made to the agreement in accordance with the provisions of the agreement.
Ordinance No. 3966, Ordinance No. 71-28, Ordinance No. 80-20, Ordinance No. 85-18, Ordinance No. 89-17 and any other ordinances in conflict with the within ordinance are expressly repealed hereby.
Provisions of this ordinance are severable and, if for any reason any of the words, phrases, paragraphs or sections or a multiplicity thereof in the within ordinance shall be held to be unconstitutional or invalid, the validity of the remaining provisions of this ordinance are hereby expressly saved and declared to be in full force and effect.
This ordinance shall be codified as part of the Code of the Township of Hempfield as Chapter A92.
This ordinance shall be effective immediately upon passage.