The people of Cave Creek, Ariz. don't have cable TV, and they want it, so they're in talks with Cox Communications to make it happen. While the town's residents can get satellite services, the municipality doesn't get any revenue from them. Cable franchise fees could bring in 3 to 5 percent of the licensee's gross revenue, town fathers suggest.
"It makes logical sense," said Cox Communications manager of government relations Michael Stull. "When a resident has satellite service, it doesn't utilize the right of way, thus the city cannot charge."
Stull didn't jump right in and say Cox would be knocking at doors with service offers. "We would look at each neighborhood and determine, on a cost basis, whether it is feasible to provide service," he said.
At the other end of the spectrum, Champaign, Ill. has cable service, and is willing to sign a new long-term agreement with the service provider, Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA), but would like more active local participation from the service provider.
"They've never been willing to get involved with the economic development corporation; that would have gone a long way toward building public goodwill," said City Councilman Thomas Bruno, who said he's not happy with the new 10-year franchise agreement on the table for final approval. "Tell us what you've done for the community or take your wires and go," he said.
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