Energy & Utilities Communications & Media

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An Oft-Forgotten Detail in Infrastructure Deals – Telecom Licenses

Much of the nation’s infrastructure, from energy to transportation, depends upon telecommunications for safe and efficient operation. The facilities that provide such communications services generally are proprietary...more

Texas Takes Step Toward Approving Charter/TWC Cable Merger

With approval of their proposed merger pending in the FCC, Charter and TWC recently filed an application to amend service provider certifications of operating authority with the Public Utility Commission of Texas. On Friday,...more

Charter/Time Warner Tout Benefits, Seek Approval of Merger in State and Federal Filings

Local Governments Can Protect Themselves and the Public By Filing Comments - Charter Communications, Inc., Time Warner Cable Inc. and Advance/Newhouse Partnership recently filed a public interest statement with the FCC...more

Renewable Energy Update - July 2015

Renewable Energy Focus - U.S. maintains solar tariffs, mixed response from industry - PV Magazine - Jul 9: Anti-dumping (AD) and countervailing duties (CVD) on Chinese c-Si PV modules imported into the growing U.S....more

Opportunity in FCC Review of Charter Communications and Time Warner Cable Merger

The Federal Communications Commission has opened a proceeding to review the proposed merger announced in May between Charter Communications Inc. and Time Warner Cable Inc., and the associated acquisition of Bright House...more

USDA Issues Final Rule Amending Voluntary Labeling Program For Biobased Products

On June 15, 2015, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued final amendments to the regulations concerning the Voluntary Labeling Program for Biobased Products. The rule is intended to incorporate statutory amendments...more

German Parliament's IT-Security Act Covers Critical Infrastructure

On June 12, 2015, the German Parliament (Deutscher Bundestag) passed an Act to Improve the Security of Information Technology Systems ("IT-Security Act"). The new legislation requires operators of so-called critical...more

Special Session Set For Today

After weeks of negotiations, speculation, and a late night caucus, Governor Mark Dayton called the Special Session for today at 10 a.m. The six bills on the approved agenda are the three budget bills that Dayton vetoed at...more

Open Internet Rules Become Effective June 12: Impact on Pole Attachments

On Friday, June 12 – barring a judicial stay – many of the FCC’s “Open Internet” rules will become effective. A significant consequence of the reclassification of retail broadband Internet access service (BIAS) as a...more

Municipal Cable Franchise Transfer Toolkit

A cable operator generally cannot transfer control of its business or transfer its cable franchise without the prior approval of the franchising authority. This gives the franchising authority the opportunity to resolve...more

Federal Order Addresses California Restrictions on When Wireless Providers Can Produce Documents Responsive to Subpoenas

A recent order from the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois affirms that California Public Utilities Code § 2891 applies to wireless telecommunications providers. The argument in that case focused on the...more

Mining Issuers: Ensure your Websites and Investor Presentations Comply with NI 43-101

Mining issuers have their qualified persons (“QPs”) and occasionally legal counsel review technical disclosure, including news releases and technical reports, to ensure they comply with National Instrument 43-101 Standards of...more

Google’s Pole Attachment Rights in California on Hold for Now

The California Public Utilities CPUC (CPUC) released a Proposed Decision on February 20, 2015 denying a petition by Google Fiber Inc. (Google) to modify the CPUC’s Video Service Provider Decision or DIVCA Order. Google’s...more

California Updates Existing Utility Pole Rules to Improve Safety and Reliability

The California Public Utilities Commission (“CPUC”) released a unanimous decision amending the rules governing design, construction, and maintenance of outdoor overhead power and communication lines. The 16 amendments are...more

Harper Review: Implications for networks businesses

The Final Harper Competition Policy Review Report (Harper Review) was released on 31 March 2015. We set out below the key potential implications for networks businesses....more

Power Surge: TCPA Litigation and the Energy Industry

Few industries have been spared from the recent wave of class actions filed under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (“TCPA”). The energy sector is no exception. ...more

FCC Forbears “For Now” From Requiring Universal Service Contribution From Broadband Providers

Section 254(d) of the Act requires providers of “telecommunications services” to contribute to the federal Universal Service Fund (USF), which is used to subsidize telephone and broadband service in high-cost areas, for...more

FCC Releases Full Text of Order Preempting State Laws Limiting Municipal Broadband

On March 12, 2015, the Federal Communications Commission released the text of its order preempting provisions of North Carolina and Tennessee law that allow municipalities to provide broadband service but otherwise limit the...more

Impact of Reclassification on Pole Attachments

The Order recognizes that the deployment of communications networks and broadband infrastructure depends heavily on access to utility poles on reasonable rates, terms and conditions. Accordingly, the Order declined to...more

Special Legal Challenges in Reclassifying Wireless Broadband As a “Telecommunications Service”

As noted in the main text, the Order’s analysis of wireless broadband proceeds in two steps. First, as noted there, the Order reviews the technical and market characteristics of broadband Internet access service (BIAS) in...more

FCC Opens Utility and Telephone Poles to Google

The Federal Communications Commission has finally released its long awaited Open Internet Report and Order on Remand, Declaratory Ruling, and Order establishing a new policy on the status of broadband Internet access service...more

The Who and What of Net Neutrality in Two Minutes or Less

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently voted 3-2 to treat the internet like a public utility, embracing the concept of “net neutrality.” Has the FCC struck a blow for consumer rights? The jury is still out....more

No Slow Lanes, No Fast Lanes: FCC Adopts New Regulations Treating Internet as a Public Utility

Should your Internet service provider be regulated in the same manner as your telephone service provider? Despite how quaint this question might sound now that many consumers bundle their ISP, telephone and television service...more

Pennsylvania and Ohio High Courts Issue Decisions Impacting Oil and Gas Operators

Supreme Court of Pennsylvania Declines to Extend Primary Term of Oil and Gas Lease - In Wayne Harrison, et al. v. Cabot Oil & Gas Corp., Case No. 75 MAP 2014 (Pa. Feb. 17, 2015), the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania...more

President Obama’s 2015 Priorities Include Cybersecurity

During his recent State of the Union address, President Obama called on Congress “to finally pass the legislation we need to better meet the evolving threat of cyber attacks, combat identity theft, and protect our children’s...more

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