Testifying on behalf of NAB and station group, Jerald Fritz will counter cable-led efforts to restrict retransmission consent rights.
Hoping to ward off congressional attempts to gut broadcasters’ retransmission consent rights, Allbritton Communications’ Jerald Fritz will testify tomorrow before the House Telecommunications and Internet Subcommittee.
Fritz, who will represent the National Association of Broadcasters as well as his TV station group, is expected to tell lawmakers that retrans is “working just fine” and remind them of its benefits to broadcasting.
The hearing is aimed at considering legislation that would liberate telcos from local franchising rules so they can compete more freely against cable and satellite TV in the video delivery business.
As currently drafted, the bill does not address retrans. But the American Cable Association’s anti-retrans campaign is picking up some stream. And Congressman Nathan Deal (R-Ga.) plans to offer a provision restricting retrans rights when the legislation moves before the parent House Energy and Commerce Committee.
That’s why yesterday, the National Alliance of State Broadcasters Associations (NASBA) sent a letter to Commerce Committee members urging them to oppose Deal’s amendment.
If approved, the amendment would turn “back the clock to the bad old days when cable operators simply took broadcasters’ signals and profited from them without ever compensating broadcasters,” wrote NASBA.