R 200
98-H 7599
Enacted 4/29/98

H O U S E   R E S O L U T I O N


Introduced By: Representatives Cambio, Coelho, Henseler, Farrell and Garvey

Date Introduced : January 28, 1998

WHEREAS, The cable industry was deregulated by Congress in 1992 with the assumption that competition from satellite services, phone companies, and others would drive down costs; and

WHEREAS, The Federal Communication Commission, in a new report to Congress, has indicated that cable rates have risen 8.5 percent in the past 12 months, four times the 2.2 percent growth of consumer prices overall; and

WHEREAS, In his report to Congress, Chairman William E. Kennard stated "The loser is the American public. They must pay higher cable prices yet they have few competitive choices. (We) should no longer have high hopes that a vigorous and widespread competitive environment will magically emerge in the next several months to reverse the troubling increase in cable rates. I fear it will not."; and

WHEREAS, The lack of program packaging choices has forced subscribers to choose a package in which they may not watch all the programming. But yet, they are focused to share in the high costs; and

WHEREAS, With the sunset provision on cable regulation only 15 months away, it is of the utmost importance that we look into the cable industry's pricing practices and see if there can be a resolution to the benefit of all; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That this House of Representatives of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations hereby respectfully requests that the United States Congress investigate cable television rates and assess the status of competition in cable television markets; and be it further

RESOLVED, That the Secretary of State be and he is hereby authorized and directed to transmit duly certified copies of this resolution to the entire Rhode Island delegation to the U.S. Congress.

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