Matthew Hussey, director of Telecom & IT task force for the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), spells out the benefits of franchise reform in this op-ed in The Springfield (Mo.) News-Leader. Missouri is one of at least 12 states so far this year to introduce video franchise reform legislation in a trend that continues to criss-cross the country. Hussey notes that a statewide cable franchising would speed competition, resulting in greater consumer savings and more innovation. But you’ve got to love the way he puts the current local franchising process, where negotiations can take 18 months or longer, in perspective: “The current local franchise model deters competition from the market because cable video providers have to separately negotiate contracts with approximately 700 municipalities in the state. Just imagine if you had to go to every county and apply for a driver’s license instead of just a state DMV.”
Steven Titch served as a policy analyst at Reason Foundation from 2004 to 2013.