Sen. Markey: I Will Not Block STELAR - Multichannel

Sen. Markey: I Will Not Block STELAR

Bill passed Wednesday with bipartisan vote in House
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Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) says he is still concerned about eliminating the cable set-top integration ban, but won't hold up the STELAR satellite reathorization bill, the bipartisan bill that passed by voice vote in the House Wednesday containing that ban.

That would appear to pave the way for the bipartisan, bicameral bill to pass in the Senate.

“I remain deeply concerned about the provision in the STELAR Act that will force more consumers to rent their video set top box from their cable provider," Markey told Multichannel News/B&C in an e-mial. "But I will not block Senate passage of bipartisan legislation that I otherwise support and that will benefit millions of Americans," he said.

"I thank Chairman Rockefeller and Ranking Member Thune for their ongoing discussions with me and for working to ensure satellite viewers do not lose important television programming in the new year.

"Because the future of innovation and competition in the video set top box marketplace is at stake, I will be asking the FCC to use its authority to ensure that consumers have more choices in set top boxes than merelyleasing their boxes from their cable company."

Markey is said to have been blocking passage of a Senate version that included the ban.