Township of Union, NJ
Hunterdon County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Editor's Note: Prior ordinance history includes portions of Ordinance No. 99-13.]
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 1]
The Township of Union hereby grants to Patriot Media & Communications CNJ, LLC, and its duly authorized successors and assigns, its nonexclusive consent to continue to place in, upon, along, across, above, over and under the highways, streets, alleys, sidewalks, public ways, and public places in the Township poles, wires, cable, and fixtures necessary for the maintenance and operation in the Township of a cable television system and cable communications system ("system") conditioned upon approval of the Board of Public Utilities of the State of New Jersey.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 2]
For the purposes of this chapter, 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 given by the Federal Communications Commission in their rules and regulations, 47 C.F.R. Subsection 76.1 et seq. and the Communications Act of 1934 at 47 U.S.C. Subsection 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 Federal or State definitions:
ACT
Shall mean Chapter 186 of the General Laws of New Jersey, and subsequent amendment thereto, N.J.S.A. 48:5A-1 et seq.
APPLICATION
Shall mean the application for a cable television franchise filed by the company with the municipality and the Board of Public Utilities of the State of New Jersey.
BOARD
Shall mean the Board of Public Utilities of the State of New Jersey.
COMPANY
Shall mean Patriot Media & Communications CNJ, LLC.
FCC
Shall mean the Federal Communications Commission.
MUNICIPALITY
Shall mean the Township of Union, County of Hunterdon, State of New Jersey.
OCTAVE
Shall mean the Office of Cable Television in the Board of Public Utilities.
PRIMARY SERVICE AREA OR PSA
Shall mean the area outside of which the line extension policy applies as set forth on the map annexed to the application.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 3]
A public hearing concerning the renewal of the franchise herein granted to the company was held after proper public notice pursuant to the terms and conditions of the State Act. Said hearing, having been held as above stated and having been fully open to the public, and the Township, having received at said hearing all comments regarding the qualifications of the company to receive this franchise, hereby finds that the company continues to possess the necessary legal, technical, character, financial, and other qualifications and that the company's operating and construction arrangements are adequate and feasible, and that, therefore, the Township hereby grants the company a nonexclusive consent, franchise, right and privilege (herein, the "franchise") to construct, erect, operate, modify and maintain, in, upon, along, across, above, over, and under the highways, streets, alleys, sidewalks, public ways and public places now laid out or dedicated and all extensions thereof, and additions thereto, in the Township such poles, wires, cables, underground conduits, manholes, and other television conductors and fixtures necessary for the maintenance and operation in the Township of a cable television system and cable communications system for the purpose of distributing television and radio signals, and other electronic impulses in order to furnish television and radio programs, and various communications and other electronic services to the public. The right so granted includes the right to use and occupy said highways, streets, alleys, public ways and public places, and all manner of easements for the purposes herein set forth and as provided by the Federal and the State Act.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 4]
a. 
This consent granted herein shall be for a term of 15 years commencing upon the issuance of a Certificate of Approval by the Board of Public Utilities.
b. 
The company, by accepting this chapter, acknowledges that the municipality has awarded a fifteen-year renewal term upon the strength of the commitments made by the company, as set forth in the application and as modified or supplemented in this chapter and any other written submissions of the company.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 5]
Pursuant to the Act, the company shall, during each year of operation under this consent, pay to the municipality 2% of the gross revenues from all recurring charges in the nature of subscription fees paid by subscribers to its cable television reception service in the municipality or any amount which is the greatest amount permitted by the Act or otherwise allowable by law.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 6]
a. 
During the term of this franchise, the company shall maintain a local business office or agent for the purpose of receiving and resolving all complaints regarding the quality of service, equipment malfunctions and similar matters, within a local, non-toll calling area of the entire franchise area of the municipality. Such local business office shall be open during normal business hours and in no event less than 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. A non-toll service telephone number shall be maintained during other hours to meet the service requirements of the entire franchise area.
b. 
The Office of Cable Television is hereby designated as the complaint officer for the Township pursuant to N.J.S.A. 48:5A-26b. All complaints shall be received and processed in accordance with N.J.A.C. 14:17-7.1.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 7]
The consent granted herein to the company shall apply to the entirety of the municipality and any property hereafter annexed.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 8]
a. 
The company rebuilt its cable system. The distribution system has been rebuilt with both fiber optic and coaxial cable and employs what is customarily known as "fiber to the service area" architecture. The fiber to the service area architecture consists of fiber optic cable from the system head-end to a node in the service area. The capacity of the cable system is 860 MHz of bandwidth.
b. 
The rebuilt system is capable of providing two-way interactive services to residential and commercial subscribers. Such services, when commercially viable, may include video on demand and high-speed data transfer. The system includes distribution electronic equipment required to make two-way operations available to the home, including converters which are available to subscribers to enable them to use such two-way technology.
c. 
The company will, upon completion of the upgrade described in the application, provide two-way interactive services to its subscribers in the municipality.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 9]
a. 
Restoration. In the event that the company or its agents disturb any pavement, street surfaces, sidewalks, driveways or other surfaces in the natural topography, the company shall, at its sole expense, restore and replace such places or things so disturbed in as good condition as existed prior to the commencement of said work.
b. 
Relocation. If at any time during the period of this consent, the municipality shall rebuild, alter or change the grade of any street, alley or other way or place, the company, upon reasonable notice by the municipality, shall remove, re-lay and relocate its equipment at the expense of the company.
c. 
Removal or Trimming of Trees. During this franchise, the company shall have the authority to trim trees upon and overhanging streets, alleys, sidewalks and public places of the municipality so as to prevent the branches of such trees from coming in contact with the wires and cables of the company. Such trimming shall be only to the extent necessary to maintain proper clearance for the company's facilities. Such trimming shall follow generally accepted tree trimming practices and shall be only to the extent necessary to maintain proper clearance for the company's wires and cables. The company shall notify the Township in writing of any planned tree trimming and shall comply with any of his directions regarding the method of tree trimming. Upon verbal notice to the Police Department, emergency tree trimming may be conducted at any time.
d. 
Pre-Construction Conferences. The company will send representatives to pre-construction conferences for Township construction projections. Notices of the meeting will be sent to the Director of Operations, 100 Randolph Road, Somerset, NJ 08873.
e. 
Temporary Wire Changes. The company shall, on the request of any person holding a valid building moving permit issued by the Township, temporarily raise or lower its wires to permit the moving of buildings, machinery or in other similar circumstances. The expense of such temporary removal, raising or lowering of wires shall be paid by the person requesting same, and the company shall have the authority to require such payment in advance. The company shall be given not less than 10 days' advance notice to arrange for temporary wire changes. The Township shall not be responsible for the expense of removing, raising or lowering wires for any building owned by it which is being moved.
f. 
Facilities and Equipment. In transmitting its television signals to subscribers in the Township, the company shall provide a quality of signal that is at least as good as that customarily provided under prevailing industry standards, and shall comply with any requirements imposed by the Federal regulations, any Federal law, and (to the extent not preempted by Federal law) any State law relating to technical standards for the transmission of television signals, transmission quality, or facilities and equipment.
g. 
Compliance with Standards. All facilities and equipment of the company shall be constructed and maintained in accordance with the requirements and specifications of the applicable ordinance and regulations set forth by the Township and/or any other local, State or Federal agencies.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 10]
The company will construct and install all upgrades in full conformance with the requirements of N.J.A.C. 14:18-2.1 and will hold the municipality harmless from any liability arising out of the construction or operation of the system in accordance with N.J.S.A. 48:5A-28(e).
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 11]
The company shall be required to proffer service along the public right-of-way to any person's residence or business located in those areas of the primary service area described herein. Any additional extension of the cable television system will be made in accordance with the Office of Cable Television's ("OCTV") Line Extension Policy ("LEP"). For purposes of the LEP, the minimum density of homes-per-mile shall be 25.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 12]
The rates of the company shall be subject to regulation to the extent permitted by applicable Federal or State law.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 13]
Patriot shall provide an access channel which shall be utilized for educational access. This channel may be shared with other communities located in or around the Township.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 14]
The company will encourage access channel usage by providing production training courses free of charge to the North Hunterdon Regional High School, and to each existing and future public school in the municipality. These training courses will focus on the production of community based programs.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 15]
Within 60 days of the issuance of the Renewal Certificate of Approval by the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, the company shall provide the Township with a capital contribution in the amount of $2,000 for the funding of the educational access channel. The company shall continue to provide the Township with capital contributions in the amount of $1,000 per year for second through 15 years following the issuance of the Certificate of Approval, to be paid on the anniversary date of the initial $2,000 payment.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 16]
The company agrees to provide one standard installation and (i) a converter box (if required), and basic monthly service, and (ii) a cable modem and standard residential cable modem service to each existing and future public school in the municipality, free of charge, provided that such school shall be within the standard installation distance from the company's existing plant. Currently, there is one school in the Township.
The Company agrees to provide one standard installation and (i) a converter box (if required), and basic monthly service, and (ii) a cable modem and standard residential cable modem service to each of the existing municipal facilities listed below, free of charge, provided that such facilities shall be within the standard installation distance from the company's existing plant.
The current existing municipal facilities are listed below.
a. 
Municipal Building, 140 Perryville Road, Hampton, NJ
b. 
Department of Public Works Building, 140 Perryville Road, Hampton, NJ
c. 
Pattenburg Fire Company, County Road 614, Pattenburg, NJ
d. 
Pattenburg Rescue Squad, 590 County Road 614, Pattenburg, NJ
To the extent that the company shall modify its residential basic service and/or cable modem service during the term hereof, and make available such modified service to all residential subscribers, it shall also make available such modified service to each school and municipal building listed above. Such modified service shall be made available to the municipal facilities within 90 days of such service being made available to residential basic service subscribers.
Upon request of any public school or any of the municipal facilities listed above in the municipality, the company agrees to install additional outlets and provide addressable converter boxes on a materials plus labor basis. Monthly service charges shall be charged at the regular tariff rates for additional outlets.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 17]
The company will, upon completion of the upgrade described in Section 21-8 herein, provide two-way interactive services to its subscribers in the municipality.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 18]
The company agrees to maintain and keep in full force and effect, at its sole expense at all times during the term of this consent, sufficient liability insurance naming the municipality as an insured and insuring against loss by any such claim, suit, judgment, execution or demand in the minimum amounts of $1,000,000 for bodily injury or death to one person and $5,000,000 for bodily injury, death or property damage resulting from any one accident or occurrence. The municipality shall be named an additional insured under this policy.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 19]
The company shall be required to have the capability to override the audio portion of the cable television system in order to permit the broadcasting of emergency messages by the municipality pursuant to Federal, State and County requirements. The municipality shall utilize the procedures approved by the State of New Jersey for such emergency uses. The company shall not 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 emergency alert system contemplated therein.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 20]
Upon issuance of final, nonappealable order of an appropriate agency or court of competent jurisdiction declaring the expiration, termination or revocation of the company's Certificate of Approval, the company at its sole cost and expense and upon the direction of the municipality, shall remove the cables and appurtenant devices constructed or maintained in connection with the services authorized herein, unless the company, its affiliated entities or assignees should, within six months after such expiration, termination or revocation obtain certification from the F.C.C. to operate a cable television system.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 21]
The company shall have the authority to promulgate such rules, regulations, terms and conditions governing the conduct of its business as shall be reasonably necessary to enable the company to exercise its rights and perform its obligations under this franchise, and to assure an uninterrupted service to each and all of its customers; provided, however, that such rules, regulations, terms and conditions shall not be in conflict with Federal, State laws or this chapter.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 22]
Any modification of existing and applicable F.C.C. rules resulting from amendment thereto by the F.C.C. shall, to the extent applicable, be considered as a part of this franchise as of the effective date of the amendment made by the F.C.C., and shall be incorporated in this franchise by specific amendments thereto by the lawful action of the Township's governing body within one year from the effective date of the F.C.C.'s. amendment or at the time of renewal of this franchise, whichever occurs first.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 23]
This chapter and franchise is subject to all provisions of the State Act and Federal Act and to all lawful rules and regulations of the Board and OCTV, adopted pursuant thereto. The company shall at all times comply with the rules and regulations governing cable television operations lawfully promulgated and adopted by the Board. In the event of a conflict between the State Act and State Regulations and any F.C.C. or Federal regulations, the F.C.C. or Federal regulations shall prevail.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 24]
The company shall not allow its cable or other operations to interfere with television reception or persons not served by the company, nor shall the system interfere with, obstruct or hinder in any manner, the operation of the various utilities serving the residents of the Township.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 25]
All of the statements and commitments contained in the application 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.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 26]
If any section, subsection, sentence, clause, phrase, or portion of this chapter is for any reason held invalid, preempted, or unconstitutional by any court or Federal or State agency of competent jurisdiction, such portion shall be deemed a separate, distinct, and independent provision of this chapter, and such holding shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions hereof.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 27]
Should any of the Federal or State Acts, regulations or pronouncements applicable to the regulation of cable television service be modified in any way, such modification, to the extent they embody required terms and conditions and meaningfully can be incorporated into this chapter, shall be so incorporated, consistent with any applicable effective dates specified in such modification. To the extent that any such modification(s), place(s) limits on permissible terms and conditions, and any provision of this chapter becomes invalid by virtue of such modification(s), Section 21-26 shall apply.
[Ord. No. 2005-7 § 28]
This chapter shall become effective immediately on the date upon which the Township receives written notification that Patriot has accepted the terms and conditions set forth herein.