[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Council of the Township of Burlington 7-22-1980; amended 8-12-1980; 12-23-1980 (Ch. IX of the 1975 General Ordinances). Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ACT or CABLE TELEVISION ACT
- Chapter 186 of the General Laws of New Jersey, 1972, N.J.S.A. 48:5A-1 et seq.
- The Board of Public Utilities of the Department of Energy of the State of New Jersey.
- Futurevision Cable Enterprises, Inc., its servants, employees, agents, officers, directors and contractors.
- The construction, installation and completion of cable television system facilities, fixtures and other things described and/or referred to in the company's application and all minutes, correspondence, commitments, representations and other statements in connection therewith.
- The office of Cable Television of the Department of Energy.
- The Township of Burlington, County of Burlington, State of New Jersey.
The Township hereby consents, subject to the terms, conditions and provisions of this ordinance, to the company's placing in, upon, along, across, above, under and over the highways, streets, alleys, sidewalks and public ways of the Township poles, wires, cables, underground conduits, manholes and other incidental television conductors and fixtures necessary for the operation and maintenance within the Township of a cable television system.
The company is hereby granted the use of the streets, alleys, sidewalks, public ways and public places which are owned by the Township or in which the Township possesses an easement or right-of-way. However, no interest in real estate is granted with respect to any other public property owned by the Township, whether by easement, right-of-way, title in fee simple, leasehold or otherwise.
The foregoing consent is and shall at all times be subject also to full and detailed compliance with the Burlington Township Zoning Ordinance, Land Subdivision Ordinance, all other Township ordinances and resolutions and all rules, regulations and laws of all applicable jurisdiction as to all aspects of locations, operations, maintenance and to every microwave or other receiver or transmitter, studio facilities, mobile equipment and vehicles, all other facilities, equipment, apparatus and the like incidental to the origination of programming, the sending or receiving of signals, and offices, storage, power sources, power plant, and the like.
A public hearing was held concerning the application by the company for consent by the Township to cable television operations proposed by the company within the Township. The hearing was held after public notice had been given pursuant to the Act. The hearing was open to the public, who were given full right to present comments, information and questions. The Township Council has been satisfied with the answers and information received with respect to said qualifications, proposed construction timetable and arrangements, commitments and plans for construction, operation and maintenance, and has concluded that it is in the best interest of the Township that the consent set forth in § A610-2 of this ordinance hereby be granted.
The consent herein granted in § A610-2 shall expire five years from the effective date of this ordinance.
The consent granted herein shall be subject to renewal for a period of 10 years only after review of the performance of the company and the adequacy of the terms of the consent herein granted in a full public proceeding.
The company shall be required to petition the Board for a certificate of approval authorizing continued operation during the period following expiration of the consent granted herein until such a time that a decision is made by the municipal governing body relative to the renewal of said consent. Such a petition shall be filed at least 60 days prior to the expiration of the consent granted herein.
Pursuant to the terms and conditions of the Act, the company shall, during each year of operations under the consent granted herein, pay to the Township a sum equal to 2% of the gross revenues from all recurring charges in the nature of subscription fees received by the company from subscribers to the company's cable television reception service within the franchise territory referred to under § A610-6.
The consent granted herein to the company shall apply to all territory within the lawful geographical boundaries of the Township (subject to such changes in said boundaries which may occur from time to time in the future) as to which the Township may consent. As to all questions of boundary location, rights and interests in property, federal, state, county and/or other governmental or quasi-governmental rights, privileges, immunities and/or interest in real estate, the company shall at its own cost and expense cause such investigation and research to be performed and such procedures to be pursued in its own name as shall be necessary to gather relevant information and resolve every such question, and the Township shall never be under any obligation to perform investigations or research, conduct or prosecute proceedings, expend legal fees or pay the charges of engineers, surveyors, title searchers or others, or otherwise take any steps to define, delineate, establish or clarify the boundaries or rights of the Township.
The company currently is the holder of a franchise previously issued by the Township. Although the application indicates that all construction contemplated under the original franchise would be completed by the end of 1979, this representation was amended at the time of the hearings to September 1, 1980. No other construction is proposed based on the existence of a franchise and company's representation. Company shall complete construction not later than September 1, 1980. (Appendix 6)
Editor's Note: A complete copy of the franchise agreement and all appendixes are on file in the Township offices.
Restoration. In the event the company shall from time to time disturb any public or private pavement, street surface, curbs, gutters, sidewalks, driveways, aboveground or below-ground utilities, lines, fixtures, equipment or other facilities, or trees, shrubs or other landscaping or surfaces in the natural topography, the company shall at its sole expense restore and replace such places and things so disturbed to and in not less than as good condition as existed prior to each such disturbance. In so doing, the company shall comply with all then applicable ordinances, resolutions, laws, rulings and regulations.
Relocation. If at any time during the period of this consent the Township shall alter or change the grade of any public street, alley or other way or place, or alter or change the location or grade of any public water or sewer facility or other utility facility, the company, upon reasonable notice by the Township, shall, at its own expense, remove, re-lay and relocate its cables, equipment or other facilities.
Temporary removal of cables. The company shall, upon request of the Township, at the company's expense, temporarily raise, lower or remove its cables and associated facilities in order to facilitate the moving of buildings, equipment, vehicles and machinery and to accommodate other like circumstances.
Trimming of trees. The company may, in carrying out its usual operation, reasonably and prudently trim trees which are under the jurisdiction of the Township or other public body to the extent necessary, upon and overhanging public streets, alleys, sidewalks and places within the Township to prevent the branches of such trees from coming in contact with the wires and cables of the company. Such trimming shall not exceed that necessary to maintain proper clearance for the company's wires and cables.
The company shall, during the entire period of five years following the effective date of this ordinance, offer cable television reception service to every present and future dwelling unit, school, institution and business located and to be located in the franchise territory described herein, in accordance with the proposal for provision of services as described in the company's application, notwithstanding that certain dwelling units, schools, institutions and businesses may be located, constructed or created as far into the future as five years following the effective date of this ordinance.
All extensions of service deemed necessary by Township's governing body shall be carried out and completed by the company promptly and in a proper manner. All extensions of service deemed necessary either by said governing body or by the company, or by both of them, shall be carried out in accordance with the Board's line extension policy as now promulgated and as may from time to time be changed and promulgated by the Board in the future.
The company shall provide, free of all installation and monthly service charges, the initial connections to basic cable television service for all accredited schools, whether public or private. Installation of all outlets beyond the first will be on a cost-plus-labor basis.
Once construction is complete, the company shall provide a connection with the cable television system to every new dwelling unit within the Township, the company shall provide that connection not later than three months following the date of the issuance of a certificate of occupancy for that dwelling unit, provided that reasonable advance notice is given by the new owner or resident to the company concerning his or her desire for service.
During the term of this municipal consent, the company shall maintain and staff a business office in the area for the purpose of receiving in person, by mail and by telephone, investigating and resolving all complaints regarding the quality of service, equipment malfunctions and similar matters.
The company shall receive and respond promptly to all such complaints in whatever form or manner received, and the company shall respond to same during the twenty-four-hour period following receipt of each such complaint, except the company shall, in the case of any complaint received on a weekend or holiday, respond not later than the first business day following receipt of the complaint or not later than 36 hours after receipt of the complaint (whichever shall be earlier). The company shall promptly investigate and resolve all such complaints. The company shall make no charge for receiving, responding to, investigating and resolving such complaints, nor for any repair, maintenance or other service to or for a subscriber, arising out of a complaint or otherwise, except for regular monthly charges of the same kind and magnitude as are made to all subscribers; provided, however, that the company shall not be responsible to bear the cost of repairs necessitated by mistreatment (except by the company) of the company's equipment and connection to same.
The company shall keep said area business office open and staffed during normal business hours, and in no event during fewer hours than 9:00 a.m. through 5:00 p.m., Mondays through Fridays.
The company shall also receive, respond to, investigate and resolve promptly (as set forth in Subsection B above) all telephone complaints during the hours 9:00 a.m. through 10:00 p.m. every day, including weekends and holidays; provided, however, that the company's telephone answering facility may be outside the Township's geographical boundaries and as distant as 15 miles from the Township's boundaries.
The Office of Cable Television of the Department of Energy of the State of New Jersey is hereby designated as the complaint officer for the township pursuant to the provisions of N.J.S.A. 48:5A-26B. All complaints shall be received and processed in accordance with the provisions of N.J.A.C. 14:17-7.1.
The company shall at its own cost and expense within 90 days after the company shall have received approval from the Board, but not later than one day before the date of commencement of construction, deliver to the Township valid and binding instruments enforceable by the Township according to their terms as follows:
A bond in form and of surety to be approved by the Township in the amount of $25,000 which shall remain in effect during the entire life of the company's cable television franchise consented to by this ordinance and conditioned upon:
Faithful performance and no violation of the terms of the grant of this municipal consent as incorporated in the certificate of approval, the approval by the Board, the terms and conditions of all other governmental approvals, permits and licenses, and of all undertakings by the company as represented in its application as amended to the Township for municipal consent.
Once constructed, the company shall continuously operate a cable television system within the Township and continuously furnish cable television reception service to all subscribers within the Township.
The Township, having determined the rates proposed in the company's application for cable television reception service to be reasonable, hereby approves them as stated therein; provided, however, that in the event any controlling law requires or permits or shall in the future require or permit a lesser of preferential rate to or for any subscriber, said lesser or preferential rate shall apply and control, and the company shall charge no greater rate. In the event any such present or future law permits such a lesser or preferential rate but does not specify the extent of such reduction or preference, the company, in its discretion and in consultation with the Township, shall set the rate.
The company shall be required to have the capability to override at the head end the audio portion of the system simultaneously on all channels in order to permit the broadcasting of emergency messages by an authorized representative of the Township, and the company shall honor every reasonable request made to the Township from time to time to broadcast such emergency messages. The cost to activate this service will be paid for by the Township.
The company shall hold and save the Township harmless from and indemnify and defend the Township against every claim, loss and liability of every kind arising in any and every way, directly and indirectly, immediately and consequentially, from:
The grant or use of this municipal consent.
The construction, operation and/or maintenance of a cable television system and/or incidental fixtures or facilities within or without the Township.
The acquisition of, or negotiation for the acquisition of, any interest in real estate, rights or privileges within or without the Township.
The making, prosecuting or processing of any application for any governmental approval, permit or license, including all appeals.
All proceedings of every kind by or against the company.
Any act or omission of the company or any of its officers, directors, employees, agents, contractors, suppliers, materialmen or affiliated companies.
The exercise or implementation (whether or not proper or lawful) of any right or privilege expressed or implied hereunder by law or otherwise arising out of this municipal consent.
In any other way caused, directly or indirectly, by the company's action, inaction, franchise, operation, maintenance, construction, installation or the like.
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 coverage policies naming the Township as an additional insured and insuring against loss by any and every claim, suit, judgment, execution or demand in the minimum amount of $100,000 for each person and for each occurrence, comprehensive general liability as to bodily injury and property damage; $50,000 for each person and $100,000 for each occurrence, automobile liability as to bodily injury; $100,000 for each occurrence, automobile liability as to property damage; and $1,000,000 "umbrella" liability as to both bodily injury and property damage for each occurrence and in the aggregate excess of the foregoing coverages. The company shall assure that no such policy of insurance shall be cancellable without a minimum of 10 days' notice to the Township. The company shall deliver to the Township copies of every such policy immediately upon or prior to the effective date of each.
Except as modified by this ordinance, the following are hereby incorporated by reference and are and shall continue to be binding upon the company as the terms and condition of this consent to the same extent as if set forth verbatim herein except where in conflict with the provisions of the Cable Television Act and/or FCC Rules and Regulations:
All minutes taken in connection with the company's application.
All correspondence and other writings and documents submitted by the company in connection with its application.
The written application of the company and all commitments, representations and other statements contained therein. The company's application, which has been filed with the Township Clerk and available for public inspection, shall upon final adoption of this ordinance be annexed hereto and made a part hereof.
If any section, paragraph, sentence, clause, phrase, term, provision or part of this ordinance shall be adjudged by any court of competent jurisdiction to be invalid or inoperative, such judgment shall not affect, impair or invalidate the remainder thereof, but shall be confined in its operation to the section, paragraph, sentence, clause, phrase, term, provision or part thereof directly involved in the controversy in which such judgment shall have been rendered.
The company shall, at a location convenient to Burlington Township residents, conduct a meeting to which its Burlington Township subscribers shall be invited to explain and discuss all proposed changes, or requests and applications for changes, in rates for cable television reception service and other rates and charges then applicable or sought to be made applicable to subscribers within the Township. Such meeting will in no case be held less than 10 days before the events to be discussed (the rate change or the regulatory proceedings) will take place.
The company shall give notice, as hereafter provided, of all proposed or contemplated changes, and requests and applications for changes, in the configuration of channels used and/or sought or intended to be used.
The company shall not later than 30 days nor earlier than 60 days in advance of events referred to in Subsections A and B in this section give notice of those events as follows: to the Township by written letter to the Township Clerk, Municipal Building, Old York Road, Burlington, New Jersey, by certified mail, return receipt requested; to subscribers by bill insert to each subscriber; to the public by publication once in a newspaper of general circulation within the Township.
In the event of any change in controlling law or any change in any controlling regulation or ruling of any federal, state or other governmental body or agency, each such change shall be incorporated into this consent effective on and after the applicable date of each such change.
This consent shall become effective upon receipt by the Township of timely written notification that the company accepts the terms and conditions hereof.