NEWTOWN AREA TELECOMMUNICATIONS ADVISORY COMMITTEE

MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF NOVEMBER 7, 2007

 

Members Present: Harry Stevens, Chairman; James Manahan, Member; Barbara Jankowski, Member and Robert Hafner, Member Representing Newtown Township; Patrick Foster, Vice-Chairman/Treasurer and Don Smith, Liaison Representing Newtown Borough. Not present were James Bowe, Member and Jerry Schenkman, Liaison Representing Newtown Township.

No representatives from Comcast Cable Communications, Inc. nor Verizon were present for the meeting.

CALL TO ORDER:

Chairman Harry Stevens called the meeting to order at 7:47 P.M.

MINUTES OF OCTOBER 3, 2007:

Robert Hafner moved to approve the minutes of October 3, 2007. The motion was seconded by James Manahan and passed unanimously (5-0).

VERIZON UPDATE:

The Committee members discussed the status of the PEG Channels. Verizon has activated the Newtown Township (Channel 40) and Newtown Borough (Channel 31) Government Channels, as well as the Council Rock Education Channel (Channel 44). The Newtown Township channel will be fully operational as soon as the Township installs a piece of electronic equipment to integrate the Verizon fiber cable with the existing broadcasting equipment. Additional Government and Educational Channels for Warminster, Northampton and other Bucks County municipalities were also activated.

COMCAST UPDATE:

The Committee members discussed the status of the Comcast Franchise negotiations. Harry Stevens advised on what information he had with regards to the matter.

The Committee members discussed the status of the Comcast Strand Maps.

NEW BUSINESS:

OLD BUSINESS:

Video Gold Proposal for the Municipal Building Video

The Committee members discussed the proposed Municipal Complex video and the Video Gold proposal. The members discussed using money from the Franchise Fees to pay for the production of the video. Jerry Schenkman was spearheading this proposal; consequently in his absence the Committee agreed to discuss the proposal at the December meeting when Jerry Schenkman presumably could attend.

Candidate Debates Recap

The Committee members discussed the Candidate debates.

Public Access Channel

Harry Stevens advised the Committee members on discussions with Dan Cohen regarding broadcasting debates and Public Access Channels.

The Committee members discussed having a Public Access Channel. Harry Stevens advised he would look into guidelines for Public Access Channels.

OTHER BUSINESS/MEMBER COMMENTS:

The Committee members discussed the recent FCC ruling with regards to apartment complexes and exclusive cable franchise deals.

The Committee members discussed the Comcast and Verizon Franchise Fees with regards to the percentage received.

The Committee members discussed the January 2, 2008 meeting and agreed to cancel the meeting. Patrick Foster made a motion to cancel the January 2, 2008 meeting. The motion was seconded by James Manahan and passed unanimously (5-0).

The Committee members discussed the length of their terms. The Recording Secretary advised that she would find out that information and update the members at the next meeting.

The Committee members agreed to have the December 5, 2007 meeting.

ADJOURNMENT:

The meeting adjourned at 8:30 P.M.

The next meeting is scheduled for December 5, 2007. The meeting will begin at 7:30 P.M., in the Newtown Borough Fire Station located at 14 Liberty Street, Newtown.

 

Respectfully Submitted:

 

Christy Holley, Recording Secretary