News from Springfield: on May 31 the Illinois State Senate
passed SB 96 which amended the Illinois Cable and Video Competition Act of 2007.
Once signed by the governor, the bill will ensure that all state cable providers pay the 1% PEG fee – 2/3rds of which goes to CAN TV and 1/3rd to the City of Chicago – and will be in effect for two years.
CMA members have been working on this issue for some time, first on Comcast’s local renewal and then late last year when we met with the IL Attorney General to discuss Comcast’s decision to file for a state franchise. We stressed to the AG the importance that public channels be treated the same as the broadcast channels in regards to HD and other evolving technologies.
The passage of this bill is a long awaited conclusion to months of CMA’s advocacy for fair funding of the public’s channels at CAN TV. Once the governor signs the bill, CAN TV will continue to be fairly funded by three of Illinois' cable providers including Comcast, the largest cable provider in the City of Chicago, into 2017.