It may be seem incongruous with the concept of localism, butexisting Federal rules and regulations hamper my company's ability to offer itscustomers, all of whom reside in Minnesota,with broadcast stations that provide their state's news, weather and sports.
~ Gary Evans, CEO
With the upcoming round of retransmission consent negotiations, we know that we'll be forced to pay fees to broadcasters for the first time, and unfortunately our customers will have to foot the bill. As a small cable operator, programming is our already largest expense by far, and we simply cannot absorb any more increases in our carriage fees.
~David Shipley, Business Manager
In my markets, small cable operators are paying more than double the amount of money in retransmission consent fees than some of the largest operators for the same signals. Until 2005 this was not an issue, but now the broadcasters are demanding ever exorbitant prices to carry their stations. I've never been forced to raise customer rates because of broadcast carriage fee increases, but now I have a station seeking a 567 percent increase, and I don't see how I can avoid hiking them for my customers, or dropping these stations that differentiate us from our competition, thereby denying us the only slight competitive advantage we have.
~Jim Beattie - Manager
The amount of money we pay in retransmission consent fees just doubled, and they keep increasing. But that's only one of a few problems facing Blue Mountain Television Cable Company as a small cable operator. The bottom line is that if our costs continue to rise, we may have to shut down!
- Jack McKenna, Owner
"In our carriage talks, the broadcasters and programmers take advantage of the fact that we're a small government run system operator. They make take-it-or-leave-it offers, and coerce us into signing contracts with pages upon pages of complicated terms and conditions. Our city doesn't have the money to hire outside attorneys to help us, so we're left with little option but to sign these contracts which lead to our customers paying higher rates, and we certainly do not make any money."
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