[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Alloway 11-8-2001 by Ord. No. 345. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Editor's Note: This ordinance also repealed former Ch. A121, Cable Television Franchise, adopted 6-10-1999 by Ord. No. 327.
The municipality hereby grants to Comcast Cablevision renewal of its nonexclusive municipal consent to place in, upon, across, above, over and under highways, streets, alleys, sidewalks, easements, public ways and public places in the municipality poles, wires, cables, underground conduits, manholes and other television conductors, fixtures, apparatus and equipment as may be necessary for the construction, operation and maintenance in the municipality of a cable television and communications system.
For the purpose of this ordinance, the following terms, phrases, words and their derivations shall have the meaning given herein. Such meaning or definition of terms is supplemental to those definitions of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Rules and Regulations, 47 CFR § 76.1 et seq., and the Cable Communications Policy Act, 47 U.S.C. § 521 et seq., as amended, and the Cable Television Act, N.J.S.A. 48:5A-1 et seq., and shall in no way be construed to broaden, alter or conflict with the federal and state definitions:
- ACT or CABLE TELEVISION ACT
- Chapter 186 of the General Laws of New Jersey, and subsequent amendments thereto, N.J.S.A. 48:5A-1 et seq.
- BASIC CABLE SERVICE
- Any service tier, which includes the retransmission of local television broadcast signals as defined by the FCC.
- BOARD or BPU
- The Board of Public Utilities, State of New Jersey.
- The grantee of rights under this ordinance and is known as "Comcast Cablevision of South Jersey, Inc."
- The Federal Communications Commission.
- OFFICE OR OCTV
- The Office of Cable Television of the Board.
- TOTAL PREFERRED SERVICE
- The combined basic cable service tier and the service tier of programming now known as "standard" service and which includes the satellite-delivered and/or broadcast channels that are not a part of any digital package, pay-per-view channel offering or premium channel offering.
- TOWNSHIP or MUNICIPALITY
- The Township of Alloway, County of Salem, State of New Jersey.
Public hearings conducted by the municipality concerning the renewal of municipal consent herein granted to the company (previously known as "Lenfest Atlantic, Inc.," d/b/a Suburban Cable) were held after proper public notice pursuant to the terms and conditions of the Act and the regulations of the Board adopted pursuant thereto. Said hearings, having been fully open to the public, and the municipality, having received at said public hearings all comments regarding the qualifications of the company to receive this renewal of municipal consent, the municipality hereby finds that the company possesses the necessary legal, technical, character, financial and other qualifications and that the company's operating and construction arrangements are adequate and feasible.
The nonexclusive municipal consent granted herein shall expire 15 years from the date of issuance of a renewed certificate of approval by the Board as provided by N.J.S.A. 48:5A-19 and 48:5A-25 and N.J.A.C. 14:18-13.6.
In the event that the municipality shall find that the company has not substantially complied with the material terms and conditions of this ordinance, the municipality shall have the right to petition the OCTV, pursuant to N.J.S.A. 48:5A-47, for appropriate action, including modification and/or termination of the certificate of approval; provided, however, that the municipality shall first have given the company written notice of all alleged instances of noncompliance and an opportunity to cure same within 90 days of that notification.
Pursuant to the terms and conditions of the Act, the company shall, during each year of operation under the consent granted herein, pay to the municipality 2% of the gross revenues from all recurring charges in the nature of subscription fees paid by subscribers for cable television reception service in the municipality or any higher amount permitted by the Act or otherwise allowable by law, whichever is greater.
The consent granted under this ordinance to the renewal of the franchise shall apply to the entirety of the municipality and any property subsequently annexed hereto.
The company shall be required to proffer service along any public right-of-way to any person's residence or business located in all areas of the franchise territory as described herein in accordance with the proposal contained in the application and modified herein. Service will be provided in this primary service area at standard and nonstandard rates. Extensions of service shall be constructed at a density of 25 or more dwelling units per linear mile. Extensions of service below a density of 25 or more dwelling units per linear mile shall be constructed utilizing the State of New Jersey's line extension policy. Installation of cable service to the residence shall be at standard installation rates when the structure is within 200 feet of its trunk lines and feeder lines. Underground service will be installed at no extra charge above aerial cable installation charges where the existing utilities are underground and within 200 feet of trunk lines. Nonstandard installations shall be performed at the state-approved tariff rates for dwelling units set farther back than 200 feet aerial or 200 feet underground from trunk lines.
Restoration. In the event that the company or its agents shall disturb any pavement, street surfaces, sidewalks, driveways, or other surface in the natural topography, the company shall, at its sole expense, restore and replace such places or things so disturbed in as good a condition as existed prior to the commencement of said work.
Relocation. If at any time during the period of this consent the municipality shall alter or change the grade of any street, alley or other way or place, the company, upon reasonable notice by the municipality, shall remove, relay or relocate its equipment at the expense of the company.
Removal or trimming of trees. During the exercise of its rights and privileges under this franchise, the company shall have the authority to trim trees upon and overhanging streets, alleys, sidewalks or other public places of the municipality so as to prevent the branches of such trees from coming in contact with the wires and cable of the company. Such trimming shall be only to the extent necessary to maintain proper clearance of the company's wire and cables.
In providing services to its customers, the company shall comply with N.J.A.C. 14:18-1 et seq. and all applicable state and federal statutes and regulations. The company shall strive to meet or exceed all voluntary company and industry standards in the delivery of customer service and shall be prepared to report on it to the municipality upon written request of the municipality Administrator or Clerk.
The company shall continue to comply fully with all applicable state and federal statues and regulations regarding credit for outages, the reporting of same to regulatory agencies and notification of same to customers.
The company shall continue to fully comply with all applicable state and federal statues and regulations regarding the availability of devices for the hearing impaired and the notification of same to customers.
The company shall use every effort to meet or exceed voluntary standards for telephone accessibility developed by the National Cable Television Association (NCTA).
Nothing herein shall impair the right of any subscriber or the municipality to express any comment with respect to telephone accessibility to the complaint officer or impair the right of the complaint officer to take any action that is permitted under law.
The company is permitted, but is not required, to charge a late fee consistent with applicable state and federal statutes and regulations.
The Office of Cable Television is hereby designed as the complaint officer for the municipality pursuant to N.J.S.A. 48:5A-26b. All complaints shall be received and processed in accordance with N.J.A.C. 14:17-6.5. The municipality shall have the right to request copies of records and reports pertaining to complaints by municipality customers from the OCTV.
During the term of this franchise, and any renewal thereof, the company shall maintain a business office or agent in accordance with N.J.A.C. 14:18-5.1 for the purpose of receiving, investigating and resolving all local complaints regarding the quality of service, equipment malfunctions, and similar matters. Such business office shall have a publicly listed toll-free telephone number and be open during standard business hours, and in no event (excepting emergent circumstances) less than 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.
During the life of the franchise, the company shall give to the municipality a bond in the amount of $25,000. Such bond shall be to insure the faithful performance of all undertakings of the company as represented in its application for municipal consent incorporated herein.
The rates of the company shall be subject to regulation as permitted by federal and state law.
The company shall provide total preferred cable television service on one outlet at no cost to Alloway School within 12 months of the issuance of a renewal certificate of approval. Each additional outlet installed, if any, shall be paid for on a materials plus labor basis by the school requesting service. Monthly service charges shall be waived on all additional outlets.
The company shall provide total preferred cable television service at no cost to the Alloway Township Municipal Building, emergency management facility and Fire Department. Each additional outlet installed, if any, shall be paid for on a materials plus labor basis by the municipality. Monthly service charges shall be waived on all additional outlets.
The company shall provide one hookup of Comcast high-speed Internet access service to the Alloway Township senior citizens facility and to the library of Alloway School within six months of such service being available in the Township of Alloway. The installation and monthly service of said outlet shall be at no cost. It is anticipated that high-speed Internet access service will be available to the residents of the Township within six months of completion of a cable system upgrade.
The company shall provide a technology grant in the amount of $5,000 for the purpose of enhancing the quality of life for the residents of the Township of Alloway within 90 days of the approval of the municipal consent ordinance by the municipality.
In the event that the municipality determines that it is necessary and feasible for it to contract with the company for the purpose of providing two-way or interconnection services, the company shall be required to apply to the BPU for approval to enter into and establish the terms and conditions of such contract. All costs for such application to the BPU shall be borne by the municipality.
The company will comply with the Emergency Alert System (EAS) rules in accordance with applicable state and federal statues and regulations.
The company shall in no way be held liable for any injury suffered by the municipality or any other person during an emergency if for any reason the municipality is unable to make full use of the cable television system as contemplated herein.
The company shall at all times maintain a comprehensive general liability insurance policy with a single limit amount of $1,000,000 covering liability for any death, personal injury, property damages or other liability arising out of its construction and operation of the cable television system, and an excess liability (or "umbrella") policy in the amount of $5,000,000. Alloway Township shall be named as an additional insured on these policies and duplicate policies shall be delivered to the Township.
All of the commitments and statements contained in the application and any amendment thereto submitted in writing to the municipality by the company, except as modified herein, are binding upon the company as terms and conditions of this municipal consent. The application and any other relevant writing submitted by the company shall be annexed hereto and made a part hereof by reference as long as it does not conflict with state or federal law. All ordinances or parts of ordinances or other agreements between the municipality and the company that are in conflict with the provisions of this agreement are hereby declared invalid and superseded.
In accordance with N.J.A.C. 14:18-1 et seq., the company will provide written notice to the municipality with regard to cable-related matters affecting the municipality.
If any section, subsection, sentence, clause, phrase or portion of this ordinance is for any reason held invalid or unconstitutional by any court or federal or state agency of competent jurisdiction, such portion shall be deemed a separate, distinct and independent provision and its validity or unconstitutionality shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of the ordinance.
This ordinance shall take effect immediately upon issuance of a renewal certificate of approval from the BPU.