Court Rejects NCTA's MDU Stay


Washington -- A divided panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit has refused to bar the Federal Communications Commission from enforcing rules that abrogated exclusive contracts between cable companies and apartment building owners.

The request for stay, rejected in a Feb. 28 order, was sought by the National Cable & Telecommunications Association. NCTA wanted a stay pending appeal insofar as the FCC's rules voided existing contracts to serve multiple dwelling units (MDUs).

Without issuing an opinion, the panel voted 2-1 to deny NCTA's request, stating that the trade group failed to satisfy "the stringent standards governing requests for such relief …"

Circuit Judges Judith W. Rogers and Merrick B. Garland sided with the FCC. Circuit Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh said at the bottom of the one-page order that he would have granted NCTA's motion.

The FCC's rules took effect March 7.