Cable Sues Over Leased-Access Rules

As expected, the National Cable and Telecommunications Association has sued the FCC over leased-access rules announced in November.

The rules cut the maximum fee that programmers must pay to lease access on cable systems to 10 cents per subscriber, although it did not address all the programmers’ complaints against cable operators. Cable companies maintained rule changes were unnecessary and that the rate cut was unjustified.

The cable petition for review, filed March 12 in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, doesn’t get into details but says the order violates the Communications Act, the free speech guarantee of the First Amendment and the protection against government takings in the Fifth Amendment.