Policy

S.D. Cable-Competition Bill Still Alive

2/08/2005 5:31 AM Eastern

A bill that would boost cable competition in South Dakota was sent to the House floor, AP reported.

Midcontinent Communications had complained that the bill eliminates the requirement that cable companies offer their services to all customers in a community, which would give its potential competitor, PrairieWave Communications, an unfair advantage, as PrairieWave could avoid the cost of original investments made by Midcontinent when it installed its citywide systems, according to AP.

PrairieWave general counsel Bill Heaston countered by saying, "Prices are much lower where PrairieWave competes.”

The bill -- which would allow city officials to grant more than one cable franchise within city borders -- was sent to the House floor by a 9-4 vote, according to AP.