Ensign/McCain Broadband Investment & Consumer Choice Act: Senate Bill S.1504

On July 27 Senators John Ensign and John McCain introduced S. 1504, the Ensign/McCain Broadband Investment and Consumer Choice Act, which among other things, abolishes cable franchising; reduces cable franchise fees (perhaps substantially); apparently (we say apparently because the bill is not entirely clear on these points) grants video providers the right to use public rights of way in perpetuity; apparently abolishes all zoning of cellular towers; apparently abolishes telephone franchises and fees; and attempts to prevent governments from providing the public with communications service. Senate Bill S.1504 is available here; a summary is available here and Sen John Ensign's floor remarks are available here. <http://www.varnumlaw.com/services/cable/telephone_entry.php> (See web site for full review and links.) (Draft legislation is at:) <http://energycommerce.house.gov/108/News/09152005_staff_disc.pdf>
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