& cplSiteName &

FCC Relaxes Charter Overbuild Order

Alan Breznick
4/3/2017
50%
50%

Reversing yet another regulatory mandate imposed by the Commission under former Chairman Tom Wheeler, the FCC is moving to ease the broadband overbuild requirements on Charter Communications.

As first reported this morning by Reuters, the now Republican-led Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted to drop the requirement that Charter Communications Inc. extend broadband availability to 1 million US households already served by another ISP. Under Wheeler's leadership, the then Democratic-led Commission imposed that mandate last May as one of the conditions for approving Charter's twin purchases of Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks. (See Charter Wins FCC Merger Approval.)

The American Cable Association (ACA) , which represents smaller and independent cable operators, has been lobbying the FCC to ease the overbuild requirements on Charter. In a letter co-signed by executives of 38 of its members last month, for instance, the ACA urged the Commission to drop the overbuild regulation because of fears that Charter would enter new areas and lure broadband customers away from smaller cable operators across the country. Several ACA members also argued that the mere threat of the government-mandated Charter overbuilds had already discouraged them from extending their own broadband services to more communities.

Under the revised FCC order expected to be made public later today, Charter must still extend high-speed data service to 2 million new homes over the next four to five years. But now the nation's second largest MSO has the freedom to expand its reach totally in areas without any broadband service.

Charter has not yet commented on the FCC's revised order. In a move that may or may not be related, Charter CEO Tom Rutledge met with President Donald Trump at the White House last month to tout his company's investment and hiring plans.

— Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading

(2)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Robert53
50%
50%
Robert53,
User Rank: Light Beer
4/4/2017 | 6:07:18 AM
hmmm
This really surprised me. FCC is changing strategy?
mendyk
50%
50%
mendyk,
User Rank: Light Sabre
4/3/2017 | 2:00:50 PM
Undone
It doesn't sound like too many people directly involved in the business will have a problem with this reversal.
Featured Video
Flash Poll
Upcoming Live Events
April 8, 2019, Las Vegas, Nevada
May 6, 2019, Denver, Colorado
May 6-8, 2019, Denver, Colorado
September 17-19, 2019, Dallas, Texas
October 1, 2019, New Orleans, Louisiana
October 2-22, 2019, Los Angeles, CA
October 10, 2019, New York, New York
November 5, 2019, London, England
November 7, 2019, London, UK
December 3-5, 2019, Vienna, Austria
December 3, 2019, New York, New York
All Upcoming Live Events
Partner Perspectives - content from our sponsors
Huawei Shows 5G in Action at MWC
By Ken Wieland, for Huawei
Huawei Heats Up Microwave for 5G Backhaul
By Ken Wieland, for Huawei
Huawei Services Bring the Best 5G Into Reality
By Steven Wu, President of Consulting & Service Solution Sales Dept., Carrier BG, Huawei
All Partner Perspectives