Friday, February 09, 2007

Cable Bill Brings Out Bizarre Partisanship

HB2069, a bill that shifts control of local cable franchises from the municipality to the state, passed committee 6-4 along party lines. Here's the rub: Republicans voted for state control, Democrats voted for local control. Some legislators admittedly did not bother to read the bill. Even so, why would Republicans support the loss of local control with an issue like this? Why should we care? Because local control is important when it comes to media and information availability as expressed by Tucson City that wants to enforce its agreement to get the public channels back.

So far there are lots of questions and the only answer appears to be that Cox Cable has an amazing lobbyist.

The bill does not appear to have been heard in the Rules Committee so there will likely be no more action until next week at the earliest.

Here's how they voted.
Republicans who voted for: John Nelson-Chair; Jerry Weiers-Vice Chair; Marian McClure; Adam Driggs; Lucy Mason; Russell Pearce
Democrats who voted against: Albert Tom; Tom Prezelski; Theresa Ulmer; Manny Alvarez

Phone number to the Arizona House of Representatives: 1-800-352-8404

CORRECTION: Albert Tom voted FOR and Marian McClure voted AGAINST

1 comment:

Kralmajales said...

Fantastic post here. I am quite surprised by this bill and the Republican support behind it. It could be a few things.

One, this is about the local Tucson City Council and City Manager rangling with Cox for access to public access channels. They must not like that they are getting regulated here and think that they won't by republicans at the state level.

It is also the case that locals are probably more apt to fight for access to local stations at the council level than at the state level.

Still, I think you are right. Don't Republicans typically want local control over schools and local control over other levels of government. In part, this is because the culture is the same or similar.

Strange. Maybe I am off.