[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Mount Olive as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Article I CSC TKR, Inc.
Article II Comcast Cablevision
[Adopted 1-22-2008 by Ord. No. 3-2008 (Ch. A332, Art. II, of the 1990 Code)]
For the purpose of this ordinance, the terms defined above shall have the meanings there indicated, and the following additional terms shall have the following meanings:
- ACT or CABLE TELEVISION ACT
- That statute of the State of New Jersey relating to cable television, known as the Cable Television Act, N.J.S.A. 48:5A-1 et seq.
- Cablevision's application for Renewal of Municipal Consent, which application is on file in the Township Clerk's office and is incorporated herein by reference and made a part hereof, except as modified, changed, limited or altered by this ordinance.
- The Board of Public Utilities of the State of New Jersey or its successor agency.
- The governing body of the Township of Mount Olive in the County of Morris and the State of New Jersey.
- CSC TKR, Inc. d/b/a Cablevision of Morris ("Cablevision"), the grantee of rights under this ordinance.
- The Federal Communications Commission.
- FEDERAL ACT
- That federal statute relating to cable communications commonly known as the "Cable Communications Policy Act of 1984," 47 U.S.C. § 521 et seq. and the Telecommunications Act of 1996, or as those statutes may be amended.
- FEDERAL REGULATIONS
- Those federal regulations relating to cable television services, 47 CFR 76.1 et seq. (and, to the extent applicable, any other federal rules and regulations relating to cable television, including, but not limited to, those described in 47 CFR 76.3), or as such regulations may be amended.
- STANDARD INSTALLATION
- The installation of drop cable to a customer's premises where the distance from the point of entry into the building being served is less than 150 feet from the active cable television system plant.
- The State of New Jersey.
- STATE REGULATIONS
- Those regulations of the State of New Jersey Board of Public Utilities relating to cable television. N.J.A.C. 14:17-1.1 et seq. and N.J.A.C. 14:18-1 et seq.; or as such regulations may be amended.
A public hearing concerning the consent herein granted to Cablevision was held after proper public notice pursuant to the terms and conditions of the Act. Said hearing having been held and fully open to the public, and the municipality having received all comments regarding the qualifications of Cablevision to receive this consent, the Township hereby finds Cablevision possesses the necessary legal, technical, character, financial and other qualifications to support municipal consent, and that Cablevision's operating and construction arrangements are adequate and feasible.
The Township hereby grants to Cablevision its nonexclusive consent to place in, upon, along, across, above, over, and under its highways, streets, alleys, sidewalks, public ways, and public places in the municipality poles, wires, cables, and fixtures necessary for the maintenance and operation in the Township of a cable television system, and for the provision of any communications service over the such system as may be authorized by federal or state regulatory agencies. Operation and construction, pursuant to said consent, is conditioned upon prior approval of the Board of Public Utilities.
This consent granted herein shall be nonexclusive and shall be for a term of 10 years from the date of issuance of a certificate of approval by the Board.
If Cablevision seeks a renewal of the consent provided herein, it shall, prior to the expiration of this consent, apply for a municipal consent and certificate of approval in accordance with N.J.S.A. 48:5A-16 and applicable state and federal rules and regulations. The Company shall also petition the Board for approval authorizing continued operation during the period following expiration of the consent granted herein and until such a time that a decision is made by the Township and the Board relative to the renewal of said consent.
The consent granted under this ordinance to Cablevision shall apply to the entirety of the Township and any property hereafter annexed.
Cablevision shall be required to proffer video programming service along any public right-of-way to any person's residence located in the franchise territory at tariffed rates for standard and nonstandard installation.
Cablevision shall extend service along any public right-of-way outside its primary service area to those residences within the franchise territory which are located in areas that have a residential density of 25 homes per mile or greater, or areas with less than 25 homes per mile where residents agree to share the costs of such extension in accordance with the line extension formula as provided by the company in its application for municipal consent.
Cablevision shall pay to the Township an annual franchise fee, in accordance with N.J.S.A. 48:5A-30.
Cablevision shall, upon request, provide free of charge one standard installation and monthly cable television reception service to all state or locally accredited public elementary and secondary schools and all municipal public libraries, as well as municipal buildings located within the Township.
Upon written request from the Township, the Company shall provide to state and locally accredited elementary and secondary schools and municipal public libraries in the Township, without charge, the following: 1) one standard installation per school or library; 2) one cable modem per installation; and 3) basic cable modem service for the term of this ordinance for each installation. This offer shall be subject to the terms, conditions and use policies of the Company, as those policies may exist from time to time.
Upon written request from the Township, the Company shall provide to the Township, without charge at one designated location, the following: 1) one standard installation; 2) one cable modem; and 3) basic cable modem service for the term of this ordinance. This offer shall be subject to the terms, conditions and use policies of the company as those policies may exist from time to time.
Cablevision shall perform construction and installation of its plant and facilities in accordance with applicable state and federal law. The Company shall be subject to the following additional construction requirements with respect to the installation of its plant and facilities in the Township.
In the event that the Company or its agents shall disturb any pavement, street surfaces, sidewalks, driveways or other surfaces, the Company shall, at its sole expense, restore and replace such disturbances in as good a condition as existed prior to the commencement of said work, as determined by the Township's Engineer under the Township's generally applicable laws, rules and regulations.
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 Township, shall remove or relocate its equipment, at its own expense.
Upon request of a person holding a building or moving permit issued by the Township, the Company shall temporarily move or remove appropriate parts of its facilities so as to permit the moving or erection of buildings or for the performance of other work. The expense of any such temporary removal or relocation shall be paid in advance to the Company by the person requesting the same. In such cases, the Company shall be given not less than 14 days prior written notice in order to arrange for the changes required.
During the exercise of its rights and privileges under this consent, the Company shall have the authority to trim trees upon and overhanging streets, alleys, sidewalks and public places of the Township so as to prevent the branches of such trees from coming in contact with the wires, cables, conduits and fixtures of the Company. Such trimming shall be only to the extent necessary to maintain proper clearance for the Company's facilities.
Cablevision shall comply with the technical and customer service standards established for the cable industry under applicable federal and state laws, rules and regulations.
Cablevision shall establish and maintain during the entire term of this consent a local area business office or agent for the purpose of receiving, investigating and resolving complaints regarding the quality of service, equipment malfunctions and similar matters. Said office shall be open daily during normal business hours, and in no event less than 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, with the exception of holidays.
The Office of Cable Television is hereby designated as the Complaint Officer for the Township pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 48:5A-26. All complaints shall be reviewed and processed in accordance with N.J.A.C. 14:17-6.5.
Cablevision agrees to maintain and keep in force and effect at its sole cost, at all times during the term of this consent, sufficient liability insurance naming the Township as an additional insured and insuring against loss by any such claim, suit, judgment, execution or demand in the minimum amounts of $500,000 or bodily injury or death to one person, and $1,000,000 for bodily injury or death resulting from any one accident or occurrence stemming from or arising out of the Company's exercise of its rights hereunder.
Cablevision shall obtain and maintain, at its sole cost and expense, during the entire term of this ordinance, a bond in form acceptable to the municipality in the amount of $25,000. Such bond shall be to insure the faithful performance of its obligations as provided in this franchise.
The rates of the Company for cable television services shall be subject to regulation to the extent permitted by federal and state law.
Cablevision shall be required to have the capability to override the audio portion of the system in order to permit the broadcasting of emergency messages by the Township pursuant to state and federal requirements. The Company shall in no way be held liable for any injury suffered by the Township 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 Township shall utilize the state-approved procedures for such emergency uses.
In the event that the service of another multichannel video program provider not subject to the Township's regulatory authority within the Township creates a significant competitive disadvantage to Cablevision, the Company shall have the right to request from the Township lawful amendments to its franchise that relieve it of the burdens which create the unfair competitive situation. Should the Company seek such amendments to its franchise, the parties agree to negotiate in good faith appropriate changes to the franchise in order to relieve the Company of such competitive disadvantages. If the parties can reach an agreement on such terms, the Township agrees to support the Company's petition to the Board for modification of the consent in accordance with N.J.S.A. 48:5A-47 and N.J.A.C. 14:17-6.7.
If the parties are unable to reach an agreement on appropriate amendments to the franchise, the Township acknowledges that the Company shall have the right to petition the Board directly for such amendments in accordance with N.J.S.A. 48:5A-47 and N.J.A.C. 14:17-6.7; provided, however, the Township shall be under no obligation to support Cablevision's request for such relief from the Board.
In any subsequent municipal consent, the Township shall require, at a minimum, the same terms and conditions of any other provider of multichannel video programming subject to the Township's regulatory authority as those contained in the instant consent. In the event such subsequent consent does not contain the same terms and conditions as the instant consent, Township agrees to support the Company's petition to the Board for modification of the consent in accordance with N.J.S.A. 48:5A-47 and N.J.A.C. 14:17-6.7 to relieve the Company of competitive disadvantages identified in the Company's petition.
Upon expiration, termination or revocation of this ordinance, Cablevision, at its sole cost and expense and upon direction of the Board, shall remove the cables and appurtenant devices constructed or maintained in connection with the services authorized herein, unless Cablevision, its affiliated entities or assignees should, within six months after such expiration, termination or revocation, obtain certification from the FCC to operate an open video system or any other federal or state certification to provide telecommunications.
Cablevision shall continue to make available noncommercial public, educational and governmental (PEG) access as described in the application for municipal consent.
The Township agrees that Cablevision shall retain the right to use the PEG access channel, or portion thereof, for non-PEG access programming, during times when the Township is not utilizing the channel for purposes of providing PEG access programming. In the event that the Company uses said PEG access channel for the presentation of such other programming, the PEG programming shall remain the priority use, and the Company's rights with respect to using the channel for non-PEG programming shall be subordinate to the Township's provision of PEG access programming on such channel.
Upon written request by the Township, Cablevision shall install a fiber access return feed at the municipal building, provided it is a standard installation. Upon completion of this installation, Cablevision shall provide the Township, in lieu of the regional public access channel described in the application, with its own designated PEG channel available for the exclusive use of the Township.
In consideration for the rights granted in this ordinance, the Company shall provide the Township with a technology grant in the amount of $25,000. Cablevision shall provide an initial grant payment of $7,000 within the first year of the new franchise agreement. The remaining grant of $18,000 shall be provided in annual installments of $2,000, upon written request by the Township (the "Annual Grant"). The Annual Grant may be used by the Township for any cable and/or other telecommunications-related purpose as the Township, in its discretion, may deem appropriate. Cablevision shall not be obligated to make any additional payments beyond year 10 of the franchise. The Annual Grant shall be payable to the Township within 60 days from receipt of the Township's written request. Notwithstanding the foregoing, should Cablevision apply for a system-wide certification or otherwise convert its municipal consent to a system-wide certification in accordance with applicable law, it shall be relieved of any payments due and owing after the date of such conversion or award of a system-wide franchise. All PEG access support provided by Cablevision shall be for the exclusive use of the company's customers in the municipality.
All of the commitments contained in the application and any amendment thereto submitted in writing to the Township by the Company, except as modified herein, are binding upon Cablevision as terms and conditions of this consent. The application and any other written amendments thereto submitted by Cablevision in connection with this consent are incorporated in this ordinance by reference and made a part hereof, except as specifically modified, changed, limited, or altered by this ordinance, or to the extent that they conflict with state or federal law.
This consent shall be construed in a manner consistent with all applicable federal, state and local laws.
If any section, subsection, sentence, clause, phrase, or portion of this ordinance is for any reason held invalid or unconstitutional by any court of competent jurisdiction, such portion shall be deemed a separate, distinct and independent provision, and such holding shall not affect the validity of the remaining portion thereof.
This ordinance shall take effect upon issuance of a certificate of approval as issued by the Board of Public Utilities.
[Adopted 3-29-2011 by Ord. No. 7-2011 (Ch. A332 Art. I, of the 1990 Code)]
The municipality hereby grants to Comcast 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.
- The company's application for renewal of municipal consent.
- 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 of Northwest New Jersey, LLC."
- The Federal Communications Commission.
- OFFICE or OCTV
- The Office of Cable Television of the Board.
- PRIMARY SERVICE AREA or PSA or FRANCHISE TERRITORY
- Consists of the area of the municipality currently served with existing plant as set forth in the map annexed to the company's application for municipal consent.
- TOWN or MUNICIPALITY
- The Township of Mount Olive, County of Morris, State of New Jersey.
Public hearings conducted by the municipality, concerning the renewal of municipal consent herein granted to the company 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 expiration of the previous certificate of approval issued by the Board.
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 required 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 area of the Township previously approved for consent and currently served by Comcast. The area encompasses Blocks 8600 (Sheet 86), 8602 (Sheet 86), and 8700 (Sheet 87) as shown on the Tax Map of the Township, dated May 1990, updated February 2001, and those portions of the Township bounded by the following: north from a point where Smithtown Road and the South Raritan River intersect to Stephens Park Road; northwest on Stephens Park Road to the Musconetcong River bearing south along the river; east on Old Drakestown Road to Mine Hill Road; south on Bartley-Drakestown Road to the intersection of River Road; north on River Road to Stephens Mill Road; northeast on Stephens Mill Road to the intersection of Flanders-Drakestown Road, Flanders-Drakestown Road west to the intersection of the Raritan River, north on the westerly bank of the river to Smithtown Road.
The service area is further constituted in the system map filed with the renewal application and is the entirety of the area served by Comcast in the municipality.
The company shall be required to proffer service to any residence or business along any public right-of-way located in all areas of the franchise territory as described herein at tariffed rates for standard and nonstandard installations. Any extension of the cable television system beyond the current franchise territory will be made in accordance with the Office of Cable Television's ("OCTV") line extension policy (LEP).
Comcast will comply with all lawful rules and regulations governing the operation of its cable television system and cable communications system within the Township of Mount Olive. If any referenced regulations are deemed unlawful by a court of competent jurisdiction or superseded by a duly enacted state or federal statute or regulation, Comcast will not be bound by such regulation, nor will the company be bound by any provision of the municipal consent ordinance or renewal certificate of approval with regard to same. Comcast reserves the right to seek administrative or judicial review of the validity of any statute, regulation or ordinance.
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.
Temporary removal of cables. The company shall, upon request of the municipality at the company's expense, temporarily raise, lower, or remove its lines in order to facilitate the moving of buildings or machinery or in other like circumstances. Whenever the request is made by, for or on behalf of private parties, the cost will be borne by those same parties.
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 statutes 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 statutes and regulations regarding the availability of devices for the hearing impaired and the notification of same to customers.
The company shall use every reasonable 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 designated as the complaint officer for the municipality pursuant to N.J.S.A. 48:5A-26(b). 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 a business office shall have a publicly listed toll-free telephone number and be open during standard business hours, and in no event (excepting emergency 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 continue to provide residents with a system-wide public access channel maintained by the company. Qualified individuals and organizations may utilize public access for the purpose of cablecasting noncommercial access programming in conformance with the company's published public access rules.
The company shall continue to provide a system-wide leased access channel maintained by the company for the purpose of cablecasting commercial access programming in conformance with the company's guidelines and applicable state and federal statutes and regulations.
The company shall continue to provide a dedicated local access channel maintained by the company for the purpose of cablecasting noncommercial access programming in conformance with the company's guidelines and applicable state and federal statutes and regulations.
The company shall take any steps that are necessary to ensure that the signals originated on the access channels are carried without material degradation, and with a signal whose quality is equal to that of the other standard channels that the company transmits.
Company representatives shall appear at least once annually, upon reasonable written request of the Township, at a public hearing of the governing body or before the Township's Cable Television Advisory Committee, to discuss matters pertaining to the provision of cable services to residents of the Township and other related issues as the Township and Comcast may deem appropriate.
The company shall provide one free standard cable installation and free basic service and required digital equipment to each elementary, middle, and secondary school classroom located in the service area; and one standard installation and free basic service to the municipal building and each fire department, first aid squad, library and public works building that is located in or may be constructed within the consent area as specified in § A480-32 and the system map filed with the renewal application. All schools and other facilities must be located within 175 feet of active cable distribution plant. Each additional outlet installed, if any, shall be paid for on a materials-plus-labor-and-equipment basis by the requesting entity. Monthly service charges shall be waived on all additional outlets.
The company will comply with the Emergency Alert System ("EAS") rules in accordance with applicable state and federal statutes 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.
All of the statements and commitments contained in the application or annexed thereto and incorporated therein, and any amendment thereto, except as modified herein, are binding upon the company as terms and conditions of this consent. The application and other relevant writings submitted by the company shall be annexed hereto and made a part hereof by reference, provided same do not conflict with applicable state or federal law.
Should the municipality grant a franchise to construct, operate and maintain a cable television system to any other person, corporation or entity on terms materially less burdensome or more favorable than the terms contained herein, the company may substitute such language that is more favorable or less burdensome for the comparable provision of this ordinance subject to the provisions of N.J.A.C. 14:17-6.7.
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.
Nothing in this franchise or in any prior agreement is or was intended to confer third-party beneficiary status on any member of the public to enforce the terms of such agreements or franchise.
This ordinance shall take effect immediately upon issuance of a renewal certificate of approval from the BPU.