Vermont Public Service Board

Cable Television

Section 8.360 - Construction

8.360 Construction.

8.361 Information filing. After receiving a certificate of public good for a new service territory, the company shall submit the following to the Board and the Department, as available:

(A) A map of the service area, showing the planned phases of construction for the entire cable system. Such map and description shall also indicate those parts of the service area which the applicant anticipates would receive service only through application of the proposed line extension policy.

(B) A statement that the applicant has obtained all licenses and other forms of permission required by state and local government bodies prior to commencement of construction.

(C) A statement that pole attachment, conduit occupancy, and right-of-way agreements have been consummated.

(D) Any corrections, updates or amplifications, to items filed at the time of application for a certificate of public good.

8.362 Compliance with design standards; waivers.

(A) All cable systems constructed and operated within this state shall conform to the minimum design criteria set forth in this rule.

(B) Waivers of specific provisions of the design criteria may be granted by the Board only upon a showing that strict compliance would endanger the viability of the system.

8.363 System requirements.

(A) The technical standards contained in Subpart K of Part 76 of the Rules and Regulations of the Federal Communications Commission, as amended, are hereby incorporated into these rules, and made a part of all certificates of public good issued by the Board for cable systems.

(B) All systems shall be designed and built so that closed caption data can pass through.

(C) All systems shall be designed and built so that they may provide the PEG access capabilities required by section 8.410 et seq. of this rule, or so that those capabilities may be later added without major reconstruction of the system.

(D) Preliminary Performance Tests. Prior to the commencement of service to cable subscribers on any portion of a new cable system or on any substantially reconstructed portion of a cable system, the operator will ensure that the system provides acceptable picture quality by "rough balancing" the active equipment to within plus or minus 5db of equipment specification for peak-to-valley signal performance. These tests may be performed by qualified system personnel or by qualified contractors, and copies of the preliminary test results shall be made available to the Department of Public Service upon request for a period of up to one year after completion of the new or reconstructed cable system.

(E) Final Performance Tests. Within 120 days of completion of a new cable system or any substantially reconstructed portion of a cable system, the operator shall conduct system proof of performance tests to determine the extent to which the system complies with the standards required in Section 8.363(A) of this Rule.

  1. All such tests shall be performed by or under the supervision of qualified system personnel or qualified contractors using equipment and procedures necessary to achieve reasonable precision of measurement.
  2. In the event that the measured performance at any end of the trunk test point fails to comply with the technical standards required, the operator shall immediately take steps to insure compliance.
  3. Copies of the report of the final performance test shall be provided to the Department of Public Service upon request and shall be kept available for inspection at the operator's office for a period of five (5) years after completion of the test.
8.364 Timetable.

(A) Application for pole attachment license shall be made to the relevant utilities within fifteen (15) days of receipt of a certificate, and application for make-ready work shall be made within 120 days of receipt of the license. Construction of a cable system shall begin within ninety (90) days of completion of make-ready work for the first phase of cable construction, or as soon thereafter as weather permits.

(B) The operator shall maintain current as-built design maps for its system at its business offices, and shall produce photocopies of such portions of the maps as may be requested by the Department of Public Service.

(C) The operator's complaint department shall begin operation at the same time as service commences.

(D) Unless the Board shall have waived the requirement, within four years from the receipt of the certificate the holder thereof shall have made service available to all potential residential subscribers in those portions of its franchise area meeting the density tests described in its line extension tariff for no-charge construction. In cases where the operator is unable to extend service because of a lack of right of way or other access problem, the operator shall be moving with due diligence to acquire such access to potential subscribers.

8.365 Safety codes and standards.

(A) All construction of cable systems shall be with the use of materials of good and durable quality.

(B) All work involved in construction, installation, maintenance and repair of cable systems shall be performed in a safe, thorough, and reliable manner, and in compliance with:

  1. the "Safety Rules for the Installation and Maintenance of Electric Supply and Communication Lines" of the National Bureau of Standards, U.S. Department of Commerce;
  2. the latest edition of the National Electric Safety Code, as from time to time amended and revised; and
  3. all applicable federal, state, and municipal laws, ordinances, and regulations.
8.366 Placement of cables.

(A) Wherever practical, a holder of a certificate shall install its system using existing poles, conduits, rights-of-way, and other facilities of utility companies.

(B) If at any time a municipality shall require all utilities to be placed underground, the certificate holder shall, upon reasonable notice by such municipality, conform with such requirement. This provision shall not be taken as determinative of who must bear the costs of placing such plant underground.

8.367 Subscriber drops.

(A) Each company provides a standard, fixed-price installation from its distribution cable to the subscriber's premises. Installations up to three hundred (300) feet in length (aerial construction) shall be made without additional charge to the subscriber. Drops in excess of this length, any concealed wiring or other custom installation work, and all underground drops, shall be charged at the rates set forth in the company's rules and regulations, which shall provide for a credit equal to the cost of the standard installation.

(B) In areas where existing utility drop cables are located underground, cable subscriber drop cables shall also be located underground where practical. In other areas, the drop cables shall be aerial unless the subscriber elects to pay the costs of underground installation as set forth in the company's rules and regulations.

8.368 Installation of drops.

(A) When a cable operator receives an application for service, and the only outdoor installation work required is to drop a line from the feeder cable to the subscriber's building, it will make the installation promptly and in no event later than ten (10) days following receipt of the application unless good and sufficient reason exists. Good and sufficient reason may include scheduling conflicts, system emergency, severe weather, and lack of access or right of way.

(B) Cable installers shall be trained to connect closed caption decoders to work with the cable connection. The decoder (provided by the subscriber) shall be connected without extra charge to the subscriber.

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