Chapter 14.32


14.32.010    Terms of franchise.

14.32.020    Definitions.

14.32.030    Service area.

14.32.040    Application.

14.32.050    Hearing.

14.32.060    Acceptance.

14.32.070    Rules and regulations by the county.

14.32.080    Franchise fee.

14.32.090    Periodic meetings.

14.32.100    Record inspection.

14.32.110    Reports.

14.32.120    Franchise renewal.

14.32.130    Transfer of ownership.

14.32.140    Retention of franchisee’s records.

14.32.150    Rates.

14.32.160    Discounts.

14.32.170    Customer service.

14.32.180    Failure to improve customer service.

14.32.190    Refunds.

14.32.200    Parental control devices.

14.32.210    Subscriber complaints to a franchisee.

14.32.220    Subscriber complaint procedure requirements.

14.32.230    Nondiscrimination.

14.32.240    Equal employment opportunities.

14.32.250    Continuity of service.

14.32.260    Technical standards.

14.32.270    Construction standards.

14.32.280    Construction notification.

14.32.290    Underground and landscaping.

14.32.300    Construction in right-of-way.

14.32.310    Safety requirements.

14.32.320    Building moving.

14.32.330    Removal and abandonment of property of franchisee.

14.32.340    Coverage.

14.32.350    Extraordinary installation.

14.32.360    Emergency override.

14.32.370    Interconnection.

14.32.380    Public, educational and government access.

14.32.390    Institutional networks (I-Nets).

14.32.400    Access and institutional network equipment.

14.32.410    Public buildings.

14.32.420    Rights reserved to the county.

14.32.430    Police powers.

14.32.440    Effect of termination for noncompliance.

14.32.450    Termination of subscriber services.

14.32.460    Revocation for cause.

14.32.470    Indemnification and hold harmless.

14.32.480    Insurance.

14.32.490    Performance bond.

14.32.500    Recourse against bonds and other security.

14.32.510    Equalization of civic contributions.

14.32.520    Inconsistency.

14.32.530    Penalties.

14.32.540    Severability.

*    Editor’s Note: At the time of the 2000 recodification of this code, at the direction of the prosecuting attorney, the title of this chapter was changed. The chapter was previously known as “Chapter 14.32 – Cable Franchise Regulations and Standards.”

14.32.010 Terms of franchise.

(a)    Authority to Grant Franchises or Ordinances for Cable Television.

(1)    It is unlawful to engage in or commence construction, operation or maintenance of a cable communications system without a franchise issued under this chapter. The commissioners may, by ordinance, award a nonexclusive franchise to construct, operate and maintain a cable communications system which complies with the terms and conditions of this chapter.

(2)    Any franchise granted pursuant to this chapter shall be nonexclusive and shall not preclude the county from granting other or further franchises or permits or preclude the county from using any roads, rights-of-way, streets or other public properties or affect its jurisdiction over them or any part of them, or limit the full power of the county to make such changes, as the county shall deem necessary, including the dedication, establishment, maintenance and improvement of all new rights-of-way and thoroughfares and other public properties. However, any such changes shall not materially or substantially impair the rights granted a franchisee pursuant to this chapter. All franchises granted subsequent to the effective date of the master cable ordinance codified in this chapter shall be granted consistent with the terms and conditions of this chapter.

(b)    Incorporation by Reference. The provisions of this chapter shall be incorporated by reference in any franchise ordinances or licenses approved hereunder. The provisions of any proposal submitted and accepted by the county shall be incorporated by reference in the applicable franchise. However, in the event of any conflict between the proposal, this ordinance and the franchise, the franchise shall be the prevailing document.

(c)    Nature and Extent of the Franchise. Any franchise granted hereunder by the county shall authorize a franchisee, subject to the provisions contained in this section:

(1)    To engage in the business of operating and providing cable service and the distribution and sale of such service to subscribers within the county;

(2)    To erect, install, construct, repair, replace, reconstruct, maintain and retain in, on, over, under, upon, across and along any street, such amplifiers and appliances, lines, cables, conductors, vaults, manholes, pedestals, attachments, supporting structures and other property as may be necessary and pertinent to the cable communication system; and, in addition, so to use, operate and provide similar facilities, or properties rented or leased from other persons, firms or corporations, including but not limited to any public utility or other franchisee franchised or permitted to do business in the county. No privilege or exemption shall be granted or conferred upon a franchisee by any franchise except those specifically prescribed in this chapter, and any use of any street shall be consistent with any prior lawful occupancy of the street or any subsequent improvement or installation therein.

(d)    Term of Franchise. The county shall have the right to grant a franchise for a period of time most appropriate to the circumstances of the particular grant.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M2, 1994)

14.32.020 Definitions.

1.    “Access channels” means free composite channels to be used for educational purposes and by government and public agencies and/or their representatives (commonly referred to as “PEG” channels).

2.    “The act” means the Cable Communications Policy Act of 1984, as amended by the Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act of 1992 and any subsequent amendments.

3.    “Addressability” means the ability of a system allowing a franchisee to authorize customer terminals to receive, change or to cancel any or all specified programming.

4.    “Applicant” means any person or entity that applies for a cable television franchise.

5.    Basic Cable Service. The basic service tier shall, at a minimum, include all signals of domestic television broadcast stations provided to any subscriber (except a signal secondarily transmitted by satellite carrier beyond the local service area of such station, regardless of how such signal is ultimately received by the cable system), any public, educational and governmental programming required by the franchise to be carried on the basic tier, and any additional video programming signals and service added to the basic tier by the cable operator.

6.    “Cablecast” means the distribution of programming which originates within the facilities of the cable television system.

7.    “Cable programming services” includes any video programming provided over a cable system, regardless of service tier, including installation or rental of equipment used for the receipt of such video programming, other than:

(a)    Video programming carried on the basic service tier as defined above;

(b)    Video programming offered on a pay-per-channel or pay-per-program basis; or

(c)    A combination of multiple channels of pay-per-channel or pay-per-program video programming offered on a multiplexed or time-shifted basis so long as the combined service (i) consists of commonly identified video programming; and (ii) is not bundled with any regulated tier of service.

8.    “Cable system” means a facility, consisting of a set of closed transmission paths and associated signal generation, reception and control equipment that is designed to provide cable service and other service to subscribers.

9.    “Channel” or “cable channel” means a portion of the electromagnetic frequency spectrum which is used in a cable system and which is capable of delivering a television signal as defined by the Federal Communications Commission.

10.    “Character generator” means a device used to generate alpha-numerical programming to be cablecast on a cable access channel.

11.    “Commissioners” means the present governing body of the county or any future board constituting the legislative body of the county.

12.    “County” means Kitsap County, a political subdivision of the state of Washington.

13.    “Data communication” means (i) the movement of encoded information by means of electrical or electronic transmission systems; (ii) the transmission of data from one point to another over communications channels.

14.    “Dwelling units” means residential living facilities as distinguished from temporary lodging facilities such as hotel and motel rooms and dormitories, and includes single-family residential units and individual apartments, condominium units, mobile homes within mobile home parks, and other multiple-family residential units.

15.    “FCC” means the Federal Communications Commission, a regulatory agency of the United States government.

16.    “Franchise” means the initial authorization or renewal thereof issued by the franchising authority, whether such authorization is designated as a franchise, permit, ordinance, resolution, contract, certificate or otherwise which authorizes construction and operation of the cable system for the purpose of offering cable service or other service to subscribers.

17.    “Franchisee” means the person, firm or corporation to whom or which a franchise, as defined in this section, is granted by the commissioners under this chapter and the lawful successor, transferee or assignee of said person, firm or corporation subject to such conditions as may be defined in county ordinance.

18.    “Gross revenues” means any and all receipts and revenues received directly or indirectly from all sources other than transactions related to real property receipts by a franchisee not including any taxes on services furnished by a franchisee, imposed on any subscriber or used by any governmental unit, agency or instrumentality and collected by a franchisee for such entity, provided also that net uncollectible debts are not considered as revenue in this definition.

19.    “Headend” means the electronic equipment located at the start of a cable system, usually including antennas, preamplifiers, frequency converters, demodulators and related equipment.

20.    “Insertion point(s)” means location(s) where institutional programming can be initiated for distribution throughout the secured portion of the subscriber network.

21.    “Installation” means the connection of the system from feeder cable to subscriber’s terminals.

22.    “Institutional services” means a cable communications system designated principally for the provision of non-entertainment services to schools, public agencies or other nonprofit agencies, separate and distinct from the subscriber network, or on secured channels of the subscriber network.

23.    “Interactive services” means services provided to subscribers where the subscriber either:

(a)    Both receives information consisting of either television or other signals and transmits signals generated by the subscriber or equipment under his/her control for the purpose of selecting what information shall be transmitted to the subscriber or for any other purpose; or

(b)    Transmits signals to any other location for any purpose.

24.    “NCTA” means the National Cable Television Association.

25.    “Office” means the person or entity designated by the county as being responsible for the administration of a franchise for the county.

26.    “Operator” means the person, firm or corporation to whom a franchise is granted pursuant to the provisions of this chapter.

27.    “Premium services” means programming over and above those provided by basic services for which there is additional charge.

28.    “Property of franchisee” means all property owned, installed or used by a franchisee in the conduct of its business in the county under the authority of a franchise granted pursuant to this chapter.

29.    “Proposal” means the response, by an individual or organization, to a request by the county regarding the provision of cable services, or an unsolicited plan submitted by an individual or organization seeking to provide cable services in the county.

30.    “Public way” or “street” means the surface, the air space above the surface and the area below the surface of any public street, including but not limited to any public alley, boulevard, drive, easement, right-of-way or sidewalk under the jurisdiction of the county.

31.    “Service interruption” means the loss of picture or sound on one or more channels.

32.    “Subscriber” means a person or entity or user of the cable system who lawfully receives cable services or other service therefrom with franchisee’s express permission.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M1, 1994)

14.32.030 Service area.

The county, while recognizing that some franchisees have previously been granted a geographically limited franchise area, may wish, upon the expiration of such franchises, to remove such restrictions and to make the entire county open to franchisees. Such conditions, if appropriate, will be addressed in individual franchise ordinances.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M3, 1994)

14.32.040 Application.

An applicant for a franchise either to construct or operate and maintain a cable communications system within the county shall file an application in a form prescribed by the county, accompanied by a nonrefundable filing fee in an amount determined by the county.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M4, 1994)

14.32.050 Hearing.

Prior to the granting of a franchise, the county commissioners shall conduct a public hearing to determine the following:

(1)    That the public will be benefited by the granting of a franchise to the applicant;

(2)    That the applicant has requisite financial and technical resources and capabilities to build, operate and maintain a cable television system in the area;

(3)    That the applicant has no conflicting interests, either financial or commercial, which will be contrary to the interests of the county;

(4)    That the applicant will comply with all terms and conditions placed upon a franchisee by this chapter;

(5)    That the applicant is capable of complying with all relevant federal, state and local regulations pertaining to the construction, operation and maintenance of the facilities and systems incorporated in its application for a franchise;

(6)    That, if an applicant is applying for a renewal of its previous franchise, it has substantially complied with the terms of the existing franchise;

(7)    That the quality of the applicant’s previous service has been reasonable in light of community needs;

(8)    That an applicant’s proposal is reasonable to meet the future cable-related community needs and interests taking into account the cost of meeting such needs and interest;

(9)    The capacity of public rights-of-way to accommodate the cable system;

(10)    The present and future use of the public rights-of-way to be used by the cable system:

(11)    The potential disruption to existing users of the public rights-of-way to be used by the cable system and the resultant inconvenience which may occur to the public; and

(12)    Any other condition that the county may deem appropriate.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M5, 1994)

14.32.060 Acceptance.

(a)    No franchise granted pursuant to the provisions of this chapter shall become effective unless and until the ordinance granting same has become effective.

(b)    Within sixty days after the effective date of the ordinance awarding a franchise, or within such extended period of time as the commissioners in their discretion may authorize, a franchisee shall file with the clerk of the board its written acceptance of the franchise, in a form satisfactory to the prosecuting attorney’s office, together with the bond and insurance policies required by Sections 14.32.480 and 14.32.490.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M6, 1994)

14.32.070 Rules and regulations by the county.

(a)    In addition to the inherent powers of the county to regulate and control any franchise it issues, the authority granted to it by the act and those powers expressly reserved by the county, or agreed to and provided for in a franchise, the right and power is reserved by the county to promulgate such additional regulations as it may find necessary in the exercise of its lawful powers, giving due regard to the contractual rights of the franchisee under the franchise.

(b)    The county commissioners reserve the right to delegate their authority for franchise administration to a designated agent.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M8, 1994)

14.32.080 Franchise fee.

A franchisee shall pay to the county quarterly, on or before the thirtieth day of each January, April, July and October, a percentage of gross revenues as defined in this chapter for the preceding three months. Such remittances shall be accompanied by forms furnished by the county to report detailed information as to the sources of such income.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M30, 1994)

14.32.090 Periodic meetings.

Upon request, a franchisee shall meet with designated county officials and/or designated representative(s) to review the performance of a franchisee for the preceding period. The subjects may include, but are not limited to, those items covered in the periodic reports and performance tests.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M31, 1994)

14.32.100 Record inspection.

Subject to statutory and constitutional limits and two working days’ advance notice, the county reserves the right to inspect the records of a franchisee necessary for the enforcement of a franchise at any time during normal business hours, provided that the county shall maintain the confidentiality of any trade secrets or other proprietary information in the possession of a franchisee. Such documents shall include such information as financial records, subscriber records within the context of Section 631 of the act and plans pertaining to a franchisee’s operation in the county.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M32, 1994)

14.32.110 Reports.

A franchisee shall furnish, upon request, a report of its activities as appropriate. Such report shall include:

(1)    Most recent annual report;

(2)    A copy of the 10-K report, if required by the Securities and Exchange Commission;

(3)    The number of homes passed;

(4)    The number of subscribers with basic services;

(5)    The number of subscribers with premium services;

(6)    The number of hook-ups in period;

(7)    The number of disconnects in period;

(8)    Total number of miles of cable in county;

(9)    Summary of complaints received by category, length of time taken to resolve and action taken to provide resolution;

(10)    A statement of its current billing practices and a sample copy of the bill format;

(11)    A current copy of its subscriber service contract;

(12)    Report on Operations. Such other reports with respect to its local operation, affairs, transactions or property that may be appropriate.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M33, 1994)

14.32.120 Franchise renewal.

The provisions of Section 626 of the act or other applicable federal or state law will govern the actions of the county and a franchisee in proceedings relating to franchise renewal. The county expressly reserves the right to establish guidelines and monitoring systems in accordance with the provisions of the act to measure the effectiveness of a franchisee’s performance during the term of such franchise.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M39, 1994)

14.32.130 Transfer of ownership.

(a)    A franchisee’s right, title or interest in the franchise shall not be sold, transferred, assigned or otherwise encumbered, other than to an affiliate, without the prior consent of the franchising authority, with such consent not being unreasonably withheld. No such consent shall be required, however, for a transfer in trust, by other hypothecation, or by assignment of any rights, title or interest of the franchisee in the franchise or cable system in order to secure indebtedness. Approval shall not be required for mortgaging purposes provided that the collateral does not specifically affect the assets of this franchise, or if the said transfer is from a franchisee to another person or entity controlling, controlled by or under common control with a franchisee.

(b)    In any transfer of a franchise requiring county approval, the applicant must show technical ability, financial capability, legal and general qualifications as determined by the county. Applicant must agree to comply with all provisions of the franchise. Costs associated with the transfer process shall be reimbursed to the county.

(c)    An assignment of a franchise shall be deemed to occur if there is an actual change in control or where ownership of fifty percent or more of the beneficial interests, singly or collectively, are obtained by other parties. The word “control” as used in this section is not limited to majority stock ownership only, but includes actual working control in whatever manner exercised.

(d)    Regardless of the circumstances, a franchisee shall promptly notify the county prior to any proposed change, transfer or acquisition by any other party of a franchisee’s company. In the event that the county adopts a resolution denying its consent and such change, transfer or acquisition of control has been effected, the county may cancel the franchise unless the parties to such change, transfer or acquisition of control reverse its effects within sixty days after the county notifies the franchisee of its intent to cancel the franchise hereunder.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M40, 1994)

14.32.140 Retention of franchisee’s records.

(a)    Retention Periods. A franchisee shall establish, keep and maintain books, accounts, papers, maps and other records which relate to the operations, transactions, property or financial condition of a franchisee with respect to its activities under the franchise issued pursuant to this chapter for a period in accordance with the following schedule:

(1)    Over Term of Franchise. Ordinance, amendments to the ordinance, ordinance applications and related materials, construction maps, documents filed or presented to the county or county commissioners and records relating to bonds or other security;

(2)    Seven Years. Financial information, including but not limited to annual reports of a franchisee, franchise fee reports, records of gross receipts, balance sheets, receipts, income and disbursements; and

(3)    Three Years. All other records required under this chapter unless otherwise specified.

(b)    Inspection of Records. The county or its authorized representative, upon reasonable notice, shall have the right to inspect at any time during normal business hours the books, records, maps, plans, service complaint logs, performance test results and any other records of a franchisee which relate to the local operations of a franchisee and which are maintained at the local office required by this chapter. If any such books or records are not kept in the local office, or if on reasonable request, are not made available to county inspection within the county, and if the county shall determine that an examination of such records is necessary or appropriate to the performance of the county’s responsibilities under this chapter, then all reasonable travel and subsistence expense necessarily incurred in making such an examination by the county shall be paid by a franchisee.

(c)    Confidentiality. County shall maintain the confidentiality of any trade secrets or other proprietary information of a franchisee in the possession of the county and, further, records shall be exempt from public inspection pursuant to this section to the extent such records are made except from public disclosure by state or federal statute and to the extent such records are protected by state or federal statute against discovery in civil litigation.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M41, 1994)

14.32.150 Rates.

(a)    Within sixty days after the grant of any franchise under this chapter, a franchisee shall file with the county a complete schedule of all rates to be charged to all subscribers.

(b)    Prior to implementation of any change in rates or charges for any service or equipment provided by a franchisee, a franchisee shall provide the county and all subscribers a minimum of thirty days’ prior written notice of such change.

(c)    Subject to federal, state and local law, the county may regulate the approval of increases of rates or charges for providing cable service and prescribe reasonable rate approval procedures.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M24, 1994)

14.32.160 Discounts.

(a)    A franchisee shall offer a discount from the normal charge for basic services and installation to those individuals age sixty-two or older or disabled who are the legal owner or lessee/tenant of their residence, provided that their combined disposable income from all sources does not exceed the housing and urban development (HUD) standards for the Seattle-Everett area for the preceding calendar year.

(b)    The county or its designee shall be responsible for certifying to a franchisee that such applicants conform to the specified criteria.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M25, 1994)

14.32.170 Customer service.

A franchisee shall comply with the customer service requirements of Section 632 of the Cable Communications Policy Act of 1984 (47 USC Section 552), as amended by the Cable Television Consumer Protection and Competition Act of 1992, and all applicable standards and regulations adopted by the FCC pursuant thereto. Such FCC standards are attached to the ordinance codified in this chapter as Appendix A and are on file in the department of administrative services.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M26, 1994)

14.32.180 Failure to improve customer service.

(a)    The county or its designee shall review telephone response and customer service information with a franchisee. It will be assumed that improvements will be made by a franchisee. It will be assumed that improvements will be made by a franchisee in the areas of noncompliance from the last reporting period. Failure to do so may result in the calling of a public hearing by the county commissioners for the purpose of examining the reasons, if any, why such improvements were not achieved by a franchisee. Further action may be taken in accordance with FCC violation procedures.

(b)    An unsatisfactory record will also result in the hearings being made part of an exhibit under Section 626(c)(1)(A) and (B) of the act alleging that such practices have failed to conform with future refranchising requirements as stated therein. In addition a franchisee’s corporate office, if appropriate, shall be advised of the county’s findings.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M29, 1994)

14.32.190 Refunds.

If a subscriber has notified a franchisee of an outage, no charge for the period of the outage shall be made to the subscriber if the subscriber was without service for a period exceeding twenty-four hours, unless the outage was due to acts of God, force majeure or circumstances reasonably beyond a franchisee’s ability to control.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M27, 1994)

14.32.200 Parental control devices.

A franchisee will make available, at the cost formula provided by the FCC, a device by which the subscriber can prohibit viewing of a particular cable service during periods selected by that subscriber.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M28, 1994)

14.32.210 Subscriber complaints to a franchisee.

A franchisee shall establish written procedures for receiving, acting upon and resolving subscriber complaints. Such written procedures shall prescribe the manner in which a subscriber may submit a complaint either orally or in writing to a franchisee. A copy of these procedures shall be provided to all subscribers upon application for services as required pursuant to Section 14.32.220. The procedures shall also inform the subscriber of the subscriber’s right to file a complaint with the county in the event the subscriber is dissatisfied with a franchisee’s action. No proceedings to resolve subscriber complaints shall be undertaken by the county until a franchisee’s complaint resolution procedures have been exhausted.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M34, 1994)

14.32.220 Subscriber complaint procedure requirements.

A franchisee’s subscriber complaint procedures shall include, but not be limited to the following:

(1)    Response to Subscriber Complaints. Responses to subscriber complaints shall be initiated within one business day of receipt. Resolution of the complaint, unless for good cause shown, shall be accomplished by a franchisee not later than five business days after receipt of the complaint. If a subscriber has notified a franchisee in writing that a bill or any portion thereof is in dispute, a franchisee shall not terminate service pending resolution of the dispute, nor shall the account be turned over or reported to a collection agency, provided that the remaining balance of the bill is current. A bill shall not be considered in dispute solely by reason of nonpayment by the subscriber.

(b)    Subscriber Complaint Record. A franchisee shall maintain a written and/or computerized subscriber complaint record containing the following information:

(A)    Date and time of subscriber complaint;

(B)    Identification of the complaint by name, address and telephone number;

(C)    Description of the nature of the complaint; and

(D)    A record of when and what action was taken by a franchisee to resolve the complaint.

The complaint record shall be kept at a franchisee’s local office for a period of three years after receipt of any complaint. A copy of said subscriber complaint record shall be made available in accordance with applicable confidentiality laws by a franchisee to the county upon his request.

(3)    Outage Log. A franchisee shall maintain an outage log showing the date, approximate time and duration, type and probable cause of all headend, trunk or distribution line service failures occurring within the calendar year. Each log shall be kept for a minimum period of three years after the close of that calendar year. The log shall also include information relating to routine testing or scheduled maintenance outages. A copy of such outage log shall be provided by a franchisee to the county upon request.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M35, 1994)

14.32.230 Nondiscrimination.

A franchisee shall not deny service, deny access or otherwise discriminate against subscribers, PEG channel users or general citizens on the basis of income, race, color, religion, national origin, age or sex. A franchise shall comply at all times with all other applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations, and all executive and administrative orders relating to nondiscrimination, which are incorporated in and made a part of this chapter by reference.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M36, 1994)

14.32.240 Equal employment opportunities.

A franchisee shall strictly adhere to equal employment opportunity requirements of federal, state and local laws and regulations in effect on the date of the franchise grant and as amended from time to time.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M37, 1994)

14.32.250 Continuity of service.

It shall be the right of all subscribers to continue receiving service so long as their financial and other obligations to a franchisee are fulfilled.

(1)    In this regard a franchisee shall act so far as it is within its control to ensure that all subscribers receive continuous uninterrupted service during the term of the franchise.

(2)    In the event a franchisee fails to operate a system for seventy-two continuous and consecutive hours without prior notification to and approval of the county board of commissioners unless there is just cause such as an impossibility to operate the system because of the occurrence of an act of God or other circumstances reasonably beyond a franchisee’s control, the county may, after notice and an opportunity for a franchisee to commence operations at its option, operate the system or designate someone to operate the system until such time as a franchisee restores service to conditions acceptable to the commissioners or a replacement franchisee is selected. If the county is required to fulfill this obligation for a franchisee, a franchisee shall reimburse the county for all reasonable costs or damages in excess of revenues from the system received by the county that are the result of a franchisee’s failure to perform.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M38, 1994)

14.32.260 Technical standards.

(a)    Subject to federal, state and local law, a franchisee shall comply with FCC rules, Part 76, Subpart K, Section 76.601 through 76.610 as may be amended, or any more restrictive standards that may be promulgated by the NCTA hereafter and, at the minimum, the following:

(1)    Applicable county, state and national/federal codes and ordinances;

(2)    Applicable utility joint attachment practices;

(3)    The National Electric Safety Code; ANSI C2;

(4)    Local utility code requirements;

(5)    Local rights-of-way procedures;

(b)    Preventive Maintenance.

(1)    A comprehensive routine preventive maintenance program shall be developed, effected and maintained to ensure continued top quality cable communications operating standards in conformance with FCC Regulations Part 76 or as may be amended.

(2)    Copies of such operating and maintenance procedures which are required by internal controls of a franchisee shall be made available to the county upon the effective date of the franchise and subsequently to be made part of Section 14.32.110.

(c)    FCC Signal Performance. Franchisee shall comply with all FCC signal performance standards, and as an aid to the county in monitoring the signal strength and quality, a franchisee shall provide the county at the county’s request copies of all FCC signal performance reports. Should the FCC no longer require signal performance reports, a franchisee shall make and submit such performance tests and reports in response to written requests by the county.

(d)    Special Tests. If the county should have reason to believe as a result of consumer complaints or other indications that a technical problem may exist impairing the performance of the cable system it will so notify the franchisee. If, after a reasonable time, the situation has not been corrected, the county may require a testing of the components or other elements which are the suspected causes of the degradation of the signal or other nonconforming performance. Advance notice shall be provided to the operator and the results of such inspection and/or tests shall be provided to the county.

(e)    Costs of Tests. Costs of such testing will be borne by the franchisee if significant noncompliance is found as a result of such testing.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M9, 1994)

14.32.270 Construction standards.

The cable television system and all franchise property and appurtenances shall be designed, installed, constructed and maintained using the current industry standard regarding components, materials and methods. A franchisee shall at all times comply with all current applicable state, federal and county standards. All of a franchisee’s plant and equipment, including but not limited to the antenna sites, headend and distribution system towers, dwelling connections, structures, poles, wires, cables, coaxial cables, fixtures and appurtenances shall be designed, located, installed, erected, constructed, reconstructed, replaced, removed, repaired, operated and maintained in accordance with good engineering practices and performed by experienced construction and maintenance personnel so as not to endanger or unreasonably interfere in any manner with the rights of any property owner, or hinder, or to obstruct pedestrian or vehicular traffic. A franchisee shall additionally comply with all applicable county construction codes and permit procedures. County shall be entitled to charge reasonable permit and inspection fees to recover the inspection costs incurred by the construction of the cable television system. Notwithstanding the granting of a franchise, a franchisee shall not be authorized to do any work under the franchise for which issuance of a permit is required unless and until such permit is issued for such work. A franchisee shall not have an absolute right to the issuance of a permit which is required unless and until such permit is issued for such work.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M10, 1994)

14.32.280 Construction notification.

At least fifteen days prior to the intended construction, a franchisee shall inform all residents in the affected area that a construction project will commence, the dates and nature of the project and a toll-free telephone number which the subscriber may call for further information. A preprinted door hanger may be used for this purpose.

(1)    Notice of Entry on Private Property. At least twenty-four hours prior to entering private property or streets or public easements adjacent to or on such private property to perform new plant construction or reconstruction, a notice indicating the nature and location of the work to be performed shall be physically posted upon the affected property. A franchisee shall make a good faith effort to comply with the property owner/resident’s preferences, if any, on location or placement of underground installations (excluding aerial cable lines utilizing existing poles and existing cable paths), consistent with sound engineering practices.

(2)    Emergency Repairs. Notice requirements of subsection (1) of this section are suspended for purposes of entry upon private property to perform repairs at the subscriber’s request or in the event of system outage repairs or other emergencies in which insufficient time is available to provide notice to subscribers.

(3)    Restoration of Property. After performance of work, a franchisee shall restore private property as nearly as possible to its condition prior to construction. Any disturbance of landscaping, fencing, or other improvements on private property shall, at the sole expense of a franchisee, be promptly repaired and restored (including replacement of such items as shrubbery and fencing) to the reasonable satisfaction of the property owner.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M11, 1994)

14.32.290 Underground and landscaping.

In those areas and portions of the county where the transmission or distribution facilities of the public utility providing telephone service and those of the facility providing electric service are underground or hereafter may be placed underground, then a franchisee shall likewise construct, operate and maintain all of its transmission and distribution facilities in the same area underground. Such activities shall be made in coordination with the other affected utilities. Amplifiers and associated equipment in a franchisee’s transmission and distribution lines may be in appropriate housing upon the surface of the ground. A franchisee shall be responsible for insuring that such housing located upon the surface of the ground is clearly visible to the county so as to facilitate lawn mowing and other landscaping activities.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M12, 1994)

14.32.300 Construction in right-of-way.

(a)    Notification of County Public Works Department. A franchisee shall submit an application for permit to perform work in the county’s rights-of-way. No work, other than emergency repairs, shall commence without such a permit. Emergency repairs may be made immediately, with notification given to the county no later than the next business day.

(b)    Installation. In accordance with the permit issued, all transmission lines, equipment and structures shall be located and installed so as to cause minimum interference with the rights and reasonable convenience of property owners and at all times shall be maintained in a safe condition and in good order and repair. Suitable barricades, flags, lights, flares, or other access shall be used at such times and places as are reasonably required for the safety of the public. Any poles or other fixtures placed in any street by a franchisee shall be placed in such manner as not to interfere with the usual travel on such public way.

(c)    Interference With Use of Streets. A franchisee must obtain an application for permit to perform work in the rights-of-way for all work performed by the franchisee in such areas. When installing, locating, laying or maintaining facilities, apparatus or improvements, a franchisee shall not interfere with the use of any street to any greater extent than is necessary, and shall leave the surface of any such street in as good condition as it was prior to performance by the franchisee of such work. Any facility, apparatus or improvement under this chapter shall be laid, installed, located or maintained in conformance with instructions given by, and to the satisfaction of, the county. In any event, a franchisee shall, at its own expense, and to the satisfaction of the county in accordance with the terms of the application for permit to perform work in the rights-of-way, restore to county standards and specifications any damage or disturbance caused to streets as a result of franchisee’s construction or operations.

(d)    Tree Trimming and Landscaping. A franchisee shall have the authority, subject to the approval and specifications of the county public works department, to trim trees on public property at its own expense, as may be necessary to protect its wires and facilities. Franchisee shall make prompt repairs and restoration to all landscaping within county rights-of-way.

(e)    Relocation/Removal. Upon receipt of sixty days’ prior written notice, a franchisee, at its own expense, shall protect, support, temporarily disconnect, relocate or remove any of its property when, in the judgment of the public works director, the same is required by reason of traffic conditions, public safety and/or improvements by governmental agencies. Nothing herein shall be deemed a taking of the property of a franchisee, and franchisee shall be entitled to no surcharge by reason of this section. After receipt of thirty days’ prior written notice, upon failure of a franchisee to commence, pursue or complete any work required by the provisions of this chapter to be performed on any street, within the reasonable time prescribed and to the satisfaction of the county, the county may, at its option, cause such work to be done, and a franchisee shall pay to the county the reasonable cost thereof within thirty days after receipt of demand.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M13, 1994)

14.32.310 Safety requirements.

A franchisee shall at all times utilize professional care and shall design, install and maintain in use devices and methods aimed at prevention of failures and accidents which may cause damage, injury or nuisance to the public and the franchisee’s employees.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M14, 1994)

14.32.320 Building moving.

Whenever any person shall have obtained permission from the county to use any street for the purpose of moving any building, a franchisee, upon fourteen days’ written notice from the county, shall raise or remove, at the expense of the permittee desiring to move the building, any of a franchisee’s wires which may obstruct the removal of such building; provided, that the moving of such building shall be done in accordance with regulations and general ordinances of the county. It is further provided that the person or persons moving such building shall indemnify and save harmless said franchisee of and from any and all damages or claims of whatsoever kind or nature caused directly or indirectly for such temporary arrangement of the lines and poles of a franchisee.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M15, 1994)

14.32.330 Removal and abandonment of property of franchisee.

(a)    The county may direct a franchisee to temporarily disconnect or bypass any equipment of a franchisee in order to complete street construction or modification, install and remove underground utilities, or for other reasons of public safety and efficient operation of the county. Such removal, relocation or other requirement shall be at the sole expense of a franchisee.

(b)    In the event that the use of any part of the cable system is discontinued for any reason for a continuous period of twelve months, or in the event such system or property has been installed in any street or public place without complying with the requirements of the franchise or other county ordinances or the franchise has been terminated, canceled or has expired, a franchisee shall promptly, upon being given ten days’ notice, remove within ninety days from the streets or public places all such property and poles of such system other than any which the county may permit to be abandoned in place. In the event of such removal, a franchisee shall promptly restore the street or other areas from which such property has been removed to a condition similar to that existing before such removal and satisfactory to the county. Such approval shall not be unduly withheld.

(c)    Any property of a franchisee remaining in place ninety days after the termination or expiration of the franchise shall be considered permanently abandoned. The county may extend such time not to exceed an additional ninety days.

(d)    Any property of a franchisee to be abandoned in place shall be abandoned in such manner as the county shall prescribe. Upon permanent abandonment of the property of a franchisee in place, the property shall become that of the county and a franchisee shall submit to the clerk of the board an instrument in writing, to be approved by the prosecuting attorney’s office, transferring to the county the ownership of such property. None of the foregoing affects or limits franchisee’s rights to compensation for an involuntary abandonment of its property under state or federal law. In the event the county and a franchisee are unable to agree as to whether an abandonment is voluntary for the purposes of this section, either party may invoke arbitration to resolve such question.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M45, 1994)

14.32.340 Coverage.

(a)    A franchisee shall provide cable television service in the entire franchise area, except that it is not required to furnish cable to those areas having cable television service provided by another franchisee. Recognizing that full coverage does not now exist, a franchisee shall complete such wiring and be in a position to offer cable reception to all residents within twelve months from the grant of the franchise.

(b)    In those areas which are adjacent to an unbuilt area, the franchisee with the nearest trunk and/or distribution line will be responsible to furnish cable service subject to Section 14.32.350.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M16, 1994)

14.32.350 Extraordinary installation.

(a)    Drop Line Costs.

(1)    All residents requesting cable service and living within three hundred feet of existing cable distribution lines shall have the cable installed at the prevailing published installation rate.

(2)    In the event a request is made for service and the residence is more than three hundred feet from an existing cable distribution line, such installation shall be completed on a time and material cost basis for that portion of the service line extending beyond three hundred feet.

(b)    Distribution Line Costs.

(1)    Cable service shall be available to all residents within the county provided there are at least thirty-two dwelling units per street mile.

(2)    In the event a request is made for service by a resident(s) living in an area not meeting such criteria, a franchisee shall enter into a contractual agreement with the resident(s) requesting service wherein a franchisee shall be reimbursed for its construction costs. Whenever any subsequent subscriber who did not contribute to the original cost of the extension connects to the extended distribution service line, that subscriber shall pay his/her pro rata share directly to a franchisee prior to obtaining cable service. A franchisee shall then promptly tender such payment to the original subscriber so long as the agreement remains in force.

(3)    Reimbursement shall be calculated on a front foot basis as a percentage of the total cost of the service line extension. Reimbursements shall be made to the original subscriber for a period of at least one year or to the point when a franchisee has recovered its incremental costs to construct the distribution service line.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M17, 1994)

14.32.360 Emergency override.

Upon request of the county a franchisee shall make provisions for an emergency alert system. Such a system shall be in conformance with specifications set forth by the county emergency management board. The county shall hold a franchisee, its agents, employees, officers and assigns harmless from any claims arising out of the emergency use of its transmitting facilities by the county.

The county, at its option, may elect to share this service with adjoining communities.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M18, 1994)

14.32.370 Interconnection.

The county may request a franchisee to interconnect PEG access channels of a cable television system with any and all other contiguous and compatible cable systems. Interconnection of system may be accomplished by direct cable connection, microwave link or other technically feasible method.

(1)    Upon receiving request of the county to interconnect, a franchisee shall immediately initiate negotiations with other affected system(s), and shall report to the county the results of such negotiations no later than sixty days after such initiation.

(2)    Franchisee may be granted additional reasonable extensions of time to interconnect, or the county may rescind its request to interconnect upon petition of a franchisee, if the county finds that a franchisee has negotiated in good faith and has failed to obtain approval from the system(s) of the proposed interconnection, or that the cost of interconnection would cause an unreasonable financial burden as determined by the county upon a franchisee and/or its subscribers.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M19, 1994)

14.32.380 Public, educational and government access.

The county may require, as a condition of a franchise granted pursuant to this chapter, provisions for public, educational and government (PEG) access.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M20, 1994)

14.32.390 Institutional networks (I-Nets).

(a)    Upon completion of the cable system upgrade, a franchisee’s system shall have the capability of bi-directional institutional networks for educational and/or public safety communications. An entity desiring use of such feature(s) will provide the board of commissioners demonstrated need of such use.

(b)    Prior to implementation of any such service, a franchisee may request a public hearing by the commissioners to discuss the benefits and associated costs of said features to the residents of the county. Upon a finding by the commissioners that such features are reasonably required to meet community needs, taking into consideration the expense of providing such services and the potential costs to subscribers, the county may require the implementation of such features in accord with the provisions of this agreement.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M21, 1994)

14.32.400 Access and institutional network equipment.

A franchisee may be required to contribute a sum of money for the purchase of or augmentation of broadcast equipment for PEG access and I-Net cablecasting. These expenditures will be prorated by the county based upon the number of subscribers to each system and such payments shall not be construed to be part of a franchise fee obligation.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M22, 1994)

14.32.410 Public buildings.

A franchisee shall furnish a cable outlet and converter, if required, for the reception of basic service at county buildings without charge, including schools specified in individual franchises. Provided, however, that this requirement may be waived by the county if any such location, now or hereafter is not within five hundred feet of any existing cable distribution facilities. For the purpose of this section, public housing facilities are not considered county buildings.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M23, 1994)

14.32.420 Rights reserved to the county.

The rights reserved to the county set forth in this section are in addition to all other rights of the county, whether reserved or otherwise authorized by law and no action, proceeding or exercise of a right shall affect any other rights which may be held by the county except as expressly otherwise stated in the franchise. The franchisee, by acceptance of the ordinance, agrees to be bound thereby and to comply with any action or requirement of the county in its exercise of any such right or power.

(1)    Delegation of Authority. The county may exercise or delegate its regulatory power to a subordinate body of its officers, employees, agencies, committees, or departments to insure the proper implementation of this chapter.

(2)    Establishment of New Requirements. The county may establish additional requirements for new franchises or franchise renewals, and may modify requirements from time to time to reflect changing conditions and the industry standards.

(3)    County Inspections. The county shall have the right to inspect all cable television system construction or installation, and to make such tests as it shall find necessary to ensure compliance with the terms of the ordinance and other applicable provisions of law. Inspections will not unreasonably disrupt a franchisee’s operations or conduct of its business.

(4)    Intervention by County. The county shall have the right of intervention, at its own cost, in any suit or proceeding involving a cable system or franchise to which a county franchisee is a party.

(5)    Street Improvements. The county reserves the right to improve any street, or other public place, or other portions thereof, over and within which the ordinance is granted, including the widening, change of grade, change of alignment, construction or reconstruction of such street, or any portion thereof and the county further reserves the right to construct or reconstruct, install, repair and maintain any such street, or other public places, or any portions thereof.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M42, 1994)

14.32.430 Police powers.

In accepting any franchise, a franchisee acknowledges that its rights under this chapter are subject to the legitimate rights of the police power of the county to adopt and enforce general ordinances necessary to protect the safety and welfare of the public and it agrees to comply with all applicable general laws enacted by the county pursuant to such power.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M7, 1994)

14.32.440 Effect of termination for noncompliance.

Subject to state and federal law, if any franchise is terminated by the county by reason of a franchisee’s noncompliance, that part of the system under such franchise located in the streets and public property, shall, at the election of the county, become the properly of the county at a cost consistent with the provisions of Section 627(b)(1) of the Act. If the county, or a third party does not purchase the system, a franchisee shall, upon order of the county commissioners, remove the system as required under Section 14.32.330 of this chapter.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M43, 1994)

14.32.450 Termination of subscriber services.

Upon termination of any subscriber, a franchisee shall promptly remove all of its facilities and equipment, excepting drop cable and internal wiring, from the premises of such subscriber upon subscriber’s request, except as provided in subsection (2) of this section.

(1)    Charges Upon Failure to Recover Equipment. Upon termination of services, should a franchisee not promptly collect its equipment from the premises of the subscriber within five working days, the subscriber shall not be charged for continued services, nor for failure to return any equipment.

(2)    Equipment Returns. Should a franchisee require the subscriber to return the equipment, a franchisee shall establish convenient hours including evening and weekend hours, for return of the equipment and the subscriber shall have a reasonable length of time in which to return the equipment. The subscriber shall be advised of the date by which the equipment must be returned before a charge may be imposed for failure to return equipment.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M44, 1994)

14.32.460 Revocation for cause.

(a)    Any franchise granted by the county may be terminated during the period of such franchise for either failure by a franchisee to comply with any material provisions of this chapter, the franchise or FCC technical guidelines.

(b)    The procedure to be followed resulting in termination for any of the above reasons, save franchisee’s request, shall be:

(1)    The county shall direct a franchisee in writing to correct such deficiencies or comply with such regulations within thirty days or a reasonable period of time.

(2)    Failure to comply with the provision of subsection (a) of this section will cause the matter of termination to be brought before the county commissioners for hearing.

(3)    At such hearing a franchisee and other interested parties may offer evidence explaining or mitigating such noncompliance. The county commissioners, in their sole discretion, will make the determination as to whether such noncompliance was without just cause. In the event the county commissioners find that such noncompliance was without just cause. the county commissioners may in their sole discretion fix an additional time period to cure such deficiency(ies). If the deficiency has not been cured at the expiration of any additional time period or if the commissioners do not grant any additional period, the county commissioners may by ordinance declare the franchise to be terminated and forfeited.

(4)    If a franchisee appeals revocation and termination, such revocation may be held in abeyance pending judicial review by a court of competent jurisdiction, provided a franchisee is otherwise in compliance with the franchise.

(5)    Nothing contained in the subsections of this section shall prevent the issuance of a new franchise containing terms substantially the same or identical to a franchise which previously was revoked, upon satisfactory assurances made to the county commissioners that the terms and conditions of this chapter can be met by the new franchisee.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M47, 1994)

14.32.470 Indemnification and hold harmless.

(a)    Claims for Franchise Related Activities. A franchisee shall, by acceptance of any ordinance granted, indemnify, defend and hold harmless the county, its officers, boards, commissions, agents and employees from and against any and all losses, damages, liabilities, claims, suits, costs and expenses, including reasonable attorney’s fees regardless of the outcome of any such claim or suit arising from any act or omission on the part of a franchisee, its officers, employees, agents or subcontractors arising from activities or work conducted pursuant to the ordinance.

(b)    Claims of Suppliers and Employees of Franchisee. A franchisee shall indemnify, defend and hold harmless the county and its officers, agents and employees from and against any and all claims from losses whatsoever, including reasonable attorney’s fees, accruing and resulting from any and all persons, firms or corporations furnishing or supplying work, services, materials, equipment or supplies in connection with work or arising out of such activities or work and from any and all claims or losses whatsoever, including reasonable attorney’s fees accruing or resulting from any person, firm or corporation for damage, injury or death arising out of franchisee’s licensed operation.

(c)    Nature of Claims. Such indemnification shall include, but not be limited to, all claims arising in tort, contracts, civil rights, infringements of copyright, violations of statutes, ordinances, regulations or otherwise. Provided, however, that the county in its sole discretion may participate in the defense of any such claim at its own expense and in such event, franchisee shall not agree to any settlement of claims without county approval.

(d)    Exception. Franchisee shall not be required to indemnify the county for negligence or willful misconduct on the part of the county, or its officials, boards, commissions, agents, or employees.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M48, 1994)

14.32.480 Insurance.

(a)    A franchisee shall, concurrently with the filing of an acceptance of award of any franchise granted hereunder, furnish to the county and file with the county’s risk manager and at all times during the existence of any franchise granted hereunder, maintain in full force and effect, at its own cost and expense, a general comprehensive liability insurance policy for the purpose of protecting the county and all persons against liability for loss or damage, for personal injury, death and property damage and errors or omissions, occasioned by the operations of a franchisee under such franchise, such policy to provide minimum limits of one million dollars for both personal injury and/or property damage.

(b)    The policies mentioned in subsection (a) of this section shall name the county as additional insured and shall contain a provision that a written notice of cancellation or reduction in coverage of said policy shall be delivered to the county thirty days in advance of the effective date thereof. If such insurance is provided by a policy which also covers a franchisee or any other entity or person other than those above named, then such policy shall contain the standard cross-liability endorsement.

(c)    Franchisee shall provide statutory worker’s compensation coverage as prescribed by the Department of Labor and Industries of the state of Washington. Franchisee shall provide for employer’s liability coverage in an amount of not less than one million dollars per occurrence.

(d)    No franchise operation shall commence until franchisee has complied with all the aforementioned provisions of this section and any such operation shall be suspended during any period that the franchisee fails to maintain required insurance in full force and effect.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M49, 1994)

14.32.490 Performance bond.

(a)    A franchisee shall promptly repair or cause to be repaired any damage to county property caused by a franchisee or any agent of a franchisee. A franchisee shall comply with all present and future ordinances and regulations regarding excavation or construction and, if deemed necessary by the county, shall be required to post a performance bond or other surety acceptable to the county in an amount specified by the county in favor of the county warranting that all restoration work will be done promptly and in a workmanlike manner and that penalties, if any, after final adjudication are paid to the county within ninety days of such finding.

(b)    Other Security in Lieu of Bond.

(1)    Franchisee may request of the county that in addition to and/or in lieu of the performance bond as set forth under subsection (a) of this section, franchisee provide other security to the county in an amount not to exceed the bond amount as determined under subsection (a). Such other security must be in a form acceptable to the county and at the county’s sole discretion, may consist of cash, assignment of savings and loan certificates, certificates of deposits, irrevocable letters of credit or U.S. Government securities.

(2)    All such other security, shall be made payable to the county. A franchisee, however, shall be entitled to the return of such other security, less any accrued interest of any cash deposit held by county, or such portion thereof which remains on deposit, not later than one year after the expiration of the term of the franchise, provided there is at that time no outstanding default on the part of franchisee.

(c)    Review and Adjustment. The amounts of the performance bond and/or other security shall be subject to review and adjustment by the county and the county, for reasonable cause, may adjust the amount at any time during the term of the ordinance. In the event of such an adjustment, a franchisee shall renew said bond within thirty days after written notice to so do.

(d)    Continuance of Performance Bond and/or Other Security Upon Transfer of Franchise. Said performance bond shall continue to exist until replaced by a new performance bond or other security satisfactory to the county, or for one year following the county’s approval of any sale, transfer, assignment or other change of ownership of the franchise, or the expiration or termination of the franchise, whichever is sooner, for the purpose of assuring franchisee’s faithful performance under the terms and conditions of the ordinance prior to the date of approval of such change of ownership and/or of expiration or termination. The county may release said bond prior to the end of such one-year period upon satisfaction by a franchisee of all said obligations under the ordinance.

(e)    No Limitation of Franchisee’s Liability. In no event shall the amount of any performance bond posted by franchisee be construed to limit the liability to the county of said franchisee nor limit franchisee’s obligation to faithfully perform the terms of the ordinance.

(f)    Other Bonds. Nothing in this section shall prohibit or preclude any other county agency from requiring franchisee to post a bond or other undertaking in connection with operations under the ordinance.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M50, 1994)

14.32.500 Recourse against bonds and other security.

Bonds and other security may be utilized by the county for the purposes, including, but not limited to, reimbursement of the county by reason of a franchisee’s failure to pay the county any sums due under the terms of this chapter or the franchise, reimbursement of the county for reasonable costs borne by the county to correct franchise violations not corrected by a franchisee after due notice, and monetary remedies or damages assessed against a franchisee due to default or violations of the franchise requirements or this chapter.

(1)    Recourse. In the event franchisee has been declared to be in default by the county under Section 14.32.460 and if a franchisee fails, within thirty days of mailing of the county’s finding, to pay the county any franchise fee, penalties or monetary sanctions, or fails to perform any of the conditions of the franchise, the county may thereafter foreclose against the performance bond and/or withdraw from any other security an amount sufficient to compensate the county’s damages, with interest at the legal rate. Upon such foreclosure or withdrawal, the county shall notify a franchisee in writing, by first class mail, postage prepaid, of the amount and date thereof.

(2)    Restoration. Within thirty days after mailing notice to a franchisee that the county has foreclosed franchisee’s performance bond or that any amount has been withdrawn by the county from the other security pursuant to subsection (1) of this section, a franchisee shall deposit such further bond or sum of money or other security as the county may require, sufficient to meet the requirements of this chapter.

(3)    Rights of the County. The rights reserved to the county with respect to any bond or security are in addition to all other rights of the county whether reserved by this chapter or authorized by law, and no action, proceeding or exercise of a right with respect to any bond or other security shall constitute an election or waiver of any rights or other remedies the county may have.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M51, 1994)

14.32.510 Equalization of civic contributions.

(a)    In the event that more than one franchise is granted, the county may require that subsequent franchisees pay to the county an amount proportional to the costs in constant dollars contributed by any preceding franchisees. These costs may include but are not limited to such features as access and institutional network costs, bi-directional or equivalent cable access and installations to municipal buildings and similar expenses.

(b)    On the anniversary of the grant of each later-awarded franchise, such franchisees shall pay to the county an amount proportional to the amount contributed by the original franchisee, based upon the amount of subscribers held by such franchisees.

(c)    Additional franchisees shall provide all PEG access channel(s) currently available to the subscribers of existing franchisees. In order to provide these access channels, additional franchisees may interconnect, at their cost, with existing franchisees, subject to any reasonable terms and conditions that the existing franchisee providing the interconnection may require. These interconnection agreements shall be made directly between the franchisees, but the county may be called upon to arbitrate any dispute regarding these arrangements.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M52, 1994)

14.32.520 Inconsistency.

If any portion of this chapter should be inconsistent or conflict with any rule or regulation now or hereafter adopted by the FCC or other federal law, then to the extent of the inconsistency or conflict, the rule or regulation of the FCC or other federal law shall control for so long, but only for so long, as such rule, regulation or law shall remain in effect; provided the remaining provisions of this chapter shall not be affected thereby.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M53, 1994)

14.32.530 Penalties.

(a)    The county shall notify a franchisee in writing stating the nature of a perceived deficiency in the operation of the cable system and setting forth the time a franchisee will be allowed a reasonable time to rectify such alleged improper condition. A franchisee may request an extension of time if construction is suspended or delayed by the county, or where unusual weather, acts of God (e.g. earthquakes. floods, etc.), extraordinary acts of third parties, or other circumstances which are reasonably beyond the control of a franchisee, delay progress provided that a franchisee has not, through its own actions or inactions, substantially contributed to the delay. The amount of time allowed will be reasonably determined by the county and a franchisee. The extension of time in any case shall not be more than the extent of the actual noncontributory delay experienced by a franchisee.

(b)    Failure of a franchisee to correct these deficiencies, except in those circumstances cited in subsection (a) of this section, may result in the county calling a hearing to determine if penalties should be imposed upon a franchisee or if a material violation of the franchise has occurred.

(c)    If, following such hearing, it is determined by the county board of commissioners that a franchisee has failed to comply with the schedule set forth in the franchise, penalties of two hundred dollars per day will be imposed for each day beyond thirty days that a franchisee has not complied with requirements specified in the franchise.

(d)    Monetary penalties may be assessed retroactive to the date that notification was provided to a franchisee in such cases where a franchisee has been nonresponsive in correcting the situation or in the case of flagrant violations.

(e)    If payment of any of these penalties is delinquent by three months or more, the county may require partial or total forfeiture of performance bond or other surety.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M46, 1994)

14.32.540 Severability.

Each section, subsection or other portion of this chapter shall be severable and the invalidity of any section, subsection or other portion shall not invalidate the remainder.

(Ord. 159 (1994) § M54, 1994)