A recent Associated Press article announced that a partnership is being formed between the state Board of Public Utilities and the state Division of Ratepayer Advocate to appeal a recent federal government decision, the first time such a partnership has been formed.
The reason for this ground-breaking alliance is a recent Federal Communications Commission decision that deemed that Cablevision was competing in a "competitive market" here in New Jersey.
What this means for thousands of cable customers in our area is, of course, higher rates. According to the article, the Board of Public Utilities cannot regulate Cablevision's rates for 200,000 cable customers in 49 New Jersey towns, a number of which occupy the 33rd Assembly District, of which I represent as an Assemblyman.
I must vigorously declare that I am 100 percent against any decision that raises cable television rates for any of my constituents, many of whom have a difficult time as it is making ends meet. Any further increases would hit many Cablevision customers very hard.
I also fear that the prospect of no regulation of Cablevision's rates will set a precedent, a slippery slope that could see Cablevision charging whatever they want for their service. This appeal must be heard and accepted. I will do all in my power as a State Assemblyman to make sure it is.
Brian P. Stack
Mayor/Assemblyman, 33rd District