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Summary: Because it can be very expensive to establish their own system of cable lines, cable companies often rent space on electric poles from the utilities that own and operate them. Currently, there is nothing in the Utilities Code that regulates this type of private contract. HB 3355 would change that by adding an entire new chapter of regulations in order to establish a framework for these types of contracts in the future.
Analysis: This bill, while it does create new regulations, is supported by the industries involved. This legislation does not create new licensing requirements or create barriers to entry in either of these industries. Instead it provides a framework for future rate setting and contract negotiations for cable companies to rent space on power poles. Stipulations include requiring the industries to negotiate in good faith, requiring that requests for new contracts be in writing, and establishment of mediation guidelines. We do not favor increased regulations. However, this framework was worked out and agreed to by the affected industries as the most efficient way for them to operate. We are neutral on this legislation.