Thursday, April 4, 2013

What happened at the Council on April 2nd, with summary and notation.

This is a short meeting at only 49 minutes. To really understand what is going on you may want to view the Council agenda and the analysis. You can find them at this link.

ORDINANCE NO. BL2013-395 is on public hearing and approves a settlement agreement with Comcast and approves a new cable franchise agreement with Comcast. Bill 396 is closely related and these two bills are taken together. This new agreement covers a lot of ground. (To view the council discussion see 12:14 to 22:06) No one speaks in opposition and the only person speaking in favor is Tom Weber, Chairman of NECAT. NECAT stands for Nashville Education, Community and Arts Television which operates channels 9, 10 and 19 on Comcast Cable and they are funded out of franchise fees. Councilman Charlie Tygard raises some good issues regarding this bill and proposes three amendments, two of which he withdraws and one of which fails. If you have an adapter box, did you know you are going to have to start paying a new fee for it? The bill passed second reading by voice vote, which means no one asked to be recorded as voting "no."

 Below is how The Tennessean covered this issue.

 Metro Council advances deal with Comcast that includes 5-cent fee increase 
 After three years of negotiations, Metro and Comcast are nearing approval of a new franchise agreement that would let the cable giant run lines all over the city for the next 10 years. The agreement allows Comcast to increase its fee to subscribers from 5 cents to 10 cents a month for running public access television channels. The Metro Council voted unanimously Tuesday to advance a deal on a second of three votes ahead of a May 5 expiration date on the parties’ existing contract. (read more)

All of the Resolutions on the consent agenda pass without any being pulled off.

RESOLUTION NO. RS2013-640 which allows Metro to accept certain incomplete infrastructure located within the River Landing subdivision left incomplete by the developer was no longer on the consent agent and it was considered separately and was deferred one meeting.

All of the bills on first reading passed without any being pulled.

Bills on Second reading: 

BILL NO. BL2012-292 is the bill that would liberalize the policy on home recording studios. It adds a new land use specific to home recording studios and would permit studios to have up to ten clients, customers, musicians, or other visitors come to the property per day. Sufficient off street parking would have to be provided and home recording studios would be subject to the residential noise restrictions in the Metro code. (For discussion of this bill see 29:19 to 37:20 in the video.) I support this bill. I think we should support the music industry and our song writer and musician neighbors. This bill passes on a voice vote but it may be close on third reading. Several Council members express reservations.

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