Category

CTAC Minutes

25
Sep
2019

September 4, 2019 Minutes

CTAC Meeting September 4, 2019 

Attendees: 
Peaches Quinn – (New Haven) –  Acting Chair
George Alexander – (Hamden) – Treasurer
Laurel Coleman – (Hamden) – Advisor
Yvonne Manning-Jones  – (New Haven ) – Advisor.
Johnes Ruta – (New Haven) – Acting Secretary
Meeting convened at 6:05 pm.

1..  Review of August 7, 2019 Minutes
Two minor modifications required (indicated on August 7 Minutes attached in.
Laurel makes Motion to accept. George Alexander seconds this Motion.
Vote unanimous.

  1. CTV Report

    No report. Please see attached CTV Report.

    3. COMCAST Report.   Please see attached COMCAST Report.

    4.   New Business

    Peaches Quinn:   CTAC Officer elections will be postponed to December.

    State Cable Advisory representation question – An individual named John Weiss called Peaches
    who wants to go to the State Advisory meetings, but does not want to come to CTAC meetings.
    We all agree that (such a person) a state rep must come from CTAC membership.

    4. Correspondence

    Letter from Comcast customer named Diane V. of Hamden, concerned with news release that
    Comcast will move the Turner Classic Movie (TCM) channel from all existing packages into the
    Sports Package.   This change will be effective as of October 11, 2019.

    This is troubling news that the Advisory all agree must be confirmed and contested. Council members agree
    that   “we are tired of Comcast decreasing channel offerings while not lowering rates & charges. TCM is               especially popular among older adults. We expect customers will push back on this change.

Peaches notes that TCM is available online at WatchTCM.com

Next meeting Wednesday, October 2, 2019 at 6:00PM.

Meeting adjourned: 7:15 PM.

September 4th , 2019 Minutes respectfully submitted by Johnes Ruta (New Haven)
Acting Secretary.   September 25th , 2019.

29
Aug
2019

August 7, 2019 Minutes

CTAC Meeting Wednesday, August 7, 2019 

Attendees: 
Peaches Quinnn – (New Haven) –  Acting Chair
George Alexander – (Hamden) – Treasurer
Laurel Coleman – (Hamden) – Advisor
Yvonne Manning-Jones  – (New Haven ) – Advisor.
John Jessen – (New Haven Public Library System) – Advisor
Johnes Ruta – (New Haven) – Acting Secretary

Meeting convened at 6:06.

  1. 1.   July meeting had been canceled due to July 4th 2..  Review of June 5, 2019 Minutes
    No corrections required.
    John Jessen makes Motion to accept. George Alexander seconds this Motion.
    Vote unanimous.

 

  1. CTV Report The use of CTV office spaces during the summer is limited as CTV Summer Hours indicates
    facility closes at 4:00 pm. CTV Receptionist Agnes has returned to the CTV office to keep
    open for our CTAC meeting. THANK YOU, Agnes!
    Joe Schofield indicated via message to us that did not receive Minutes email (as he should
    be included in this release).
    Joe also asks that he be copied on the Agenda for upcoming meetings on the previous Friday,
    in order that he be able to attend when required: The CTACForward email distribution list
    should include   jlschofield@citizenstv.net

    4.     COMCAST

Announcements from Sharon Codeanne were emailed today to the CTAC members.

Comcast has expanded eligibility of our Internet Essentials program to all qualified low-income households across
         our service area. This is the largest expansion in the history of the program and represents a culmination of 11 prior
expansions of eligibility.  This expansion will more than double the number of households eligible for the program
(from 3.2 million to nearly 7 million) and will allow Internet Essentials to reach previously unserved populations
including low-income people with disabilities, seniors not currently covered in pilot markets, new parents, and adults
without children in the home. This expansion allows us to cast the widest possible net and ensure that those who
would benefit the most from being connected have the opportunity to join the program.  To be eligible for the
program, low-income households must be eligible for public assistance programs such as Medicaid, the National
School Lunch Program, SNAP, HUD Housing Assistance and others.

The Press Release information on COMCAST’s INTERNET ESSENTIALS is included at the bottom of
this document, *   and the   .docx and PDF of the Inernet Essentials Brochure are also attached with this
email of the August CTAC Minutes.   FREE DIGITAL LITERACY TRAINING sessions will also be
offered at the New Haven Public Library and some schools in Comcast Franchise areas. See doc & PDF.
 Johnes asks about Comcast scheduled rate increases considering Comcast package plans previously
guaranteeing no rate increases ?

The CTAC members agree that Sharon Codeanne should come to the next meeting on September 4th.

5.     Old Business

(a) George Alexander gives update on community awards. George makes Motion to give $3,000 to Partnership
Center for Daycare.   The previous CTAC meeting on June 5th voted this down in favor of giving $1,000
to each town in the NH/WH/H area.
Peaches Quinn comments that “All not-for-profit Senior Adult Day Care centers in New Haven have closed.

It is defined that awards can be granted to be eligible only to centers that subscribe to Comcast.

(b)   Chair-personship
Peaches Quinn (Vice Chair) , presently Acting Chair, says that she cannot assume position of Chair
because she is currently active in the Connecticut Legislature for the Coalition for Aging.
Johnes Ruta states that he also has duties on two other Boards of Directors in CT, so assuming
to the CTAC Chair would create a hardship along with freelance work needed for financial survival.
Other members also defer for personal reasons.

CTAC Chair is normally appointed to attend the Connecticut Cable Advisory Council meetings,
on a quarterly basis, which are held in Middletown, CT on Rte. 372.

Johnes proposes Motion to have “line-up of alternatives” to Chair meetings and attend the State
Cable Advisory meetings. Line of Peaches ,Quinn, Johnes Ruta, Laurel, Yvonne, John Jessen, etc.
Next CT Cable Advisory meeting is in December 2019.
Yvonne Manning-Jones seconds this Motion. Vote unanimous.

6.   Town Representation

West Haven CTAC representation is now down to 0 = zero, due to the resignation of Tad Weinstein.

State of Connecticut assigned representation quota should be 4 from each participating town,
plus 1 from the town’s Library System, plus 1 from the town’s Board of Education.

Peaches suggests idea to change the name of the Cable Television Advisory Council in order
to attract new membership for each town.

7. CTAC Jurisdiction

State Cable Television Advisory Council, and therefore local Councils have no jurisdiction over
Satellite TV systems, or over RoKU, Netflix, or any other such internet television access systems.

  1. New Business
    Recommendation to support pending CT Legislature Bill 6421 – an Act concerning the regulation of cable television rates; requires that Title 16 of the General Statutes be
    amended to regulate cable television rates.
  2. Financial – George Alexander

Three cable television bills payment checks were received this month at CTAC from banks,
and are being returned to those banks. This is an ongoing problem despite the fact that
subscribers are directed in their billing not to remit to CTAC !

10. Time change possibility for meetings

This idea is tabled (put off to another meeting).



Next meeting Wednesday, September 4, 2019 at 6:00PM.

Meeting adjourned: 7:11 PM.

August 7th , 2019 Minutes respectfully submitted by Johnes Ruta (New Haven) Acting Secretary.
August 29th , 2019.

8
Aug
2019

June 5, 2019 Minutes

CTAC Meeting Wednesday, June 5, 2019 

Attendees: 
Tad Weinstein – (West Haven) –  Chair
George Alexander – (Hamden) – Treasurer
Yvonne Manning-Jones  – (New Haven ) – Advisor.
John Jessen – (New Haven Public Library System) – Advisor
Johnes Ruta – (New Haven) – Acting Secretary
Laurel Coleman – (Hamden) – Advisor

Meeting convened at 6:05.

  1. Review of May 1, 2019 Minutes
    Two corrections received by Johnes before meeting,
    One correction from Tad, one correction from George – applied to May Minutes.
    Laure; makes Motion to accept May Minutes.   Tad seconds this Motion.
    Vote unanimous.

    2.   July meeting to be canceled due to July 4th holiday.   Next meeting August 7th.

    3.   Adult Centers for towns in three venues:
    a. New Haven venue – not yet identified

    b. West Haven venue – no yet identified

    c.   Hamden venue identified and contributed

    Letter from Hamden venue:

PARTNERSHIPS CENTER FOR ADULT DAY CARE
3 Industrial Circle Hamden, CT 06517

Phone (203) 248-8854 Fax (203) 287-1880

May 25, 2019

The Cable Television Advisory Council for Hamden, New Haven, and West Haven
PO Box 8415 New Haven, CT 06530-0415

Dear Tad Weinstein & Friends:

On behalf of the participants, staff, and Board of Directors of Partnerships Center for Adult Day Care, I would like to thank you for your generous pledge of $1000 to support our organization. Your gift will be put to vital use to fund our Cablevision service which provides internet service for our offices as well as cable television.

We are grateful for George Alexander’s recommendation for this donation and would welcome your further involvement with Partnerships. Partnerships provides daycare for frail elderly clients with dementia and Alzheimer’s which enables its participants to remain living at home for as long as possible. Your support helps us to provide vital support for the quality of life for the participants, family members and caregivers. Partnerships provides service to residents of the greater New Haven area, which includes the towns of Hamden, North Haven, New Haven, Bethany, Orange, Wallingford, East Haven, West Haven and Branford.

I would welcome meeting you to answer any questions and providing a tour of our center at your convenience.

Please feel free to contact us at (203) 248-8854 for any further information you may need. Thank you for your support!

Sincerely,

Mary Beth Kiely, R.N. Director

  1. COMCAST Report – Report received from Sharon Codeanne.

 

C O M C A S T

May 23, 2019 Via Electronic Filing and Is` Class Mail

Jeffrey R. Gaudiosi, Esq. Executive Secretary

Connecticut Public Utilities Regulatory Authority 10 Franklin Square New Britain, Connecticut 06051

Re: Important Information — Xfinity TV Channel Updates

Dear Secretary Gaudiosi:

I am writing to you on behalf of Comcast/Branford, Comcast/Clinton, Comcast/Danbury, Comcast/Groton, Comcast/Hartford, Comcast/Lakeville Comcast/Middletown, Comcast/New Haven, Comcast/Norwich, Comcast/Old Lyme, Comcast/Plainville, Comcast/Seymour, Comcast/Vernon, Comcast/Waterbury, and Comcast/Connecticut as part of our ongoing efforts to keep you informed about key aspects of Comcast services.

Hitz

We are committed to keeping you and our customers informed about changes to Xfinity TV services. Accordingly, please note that as of July 17, 2019, customers who subscribe to the Digital Premier Tier, receive Digital Premier Tier as part of their package, or subscribe to one of the packages listed below, will receive Hitz, a new service that will include more than 200 movie titles selected from a variety of top studios. As of that date, Cinemax will no longer be available with Digital Premier Tier or those packages listed below. For more information about this change, please visit http://xfinity.com/hitz. We are notifying customers who subscribe to these services of this change.

The following packages offered in the past or currently will be modified with the change described above:

 

Digital Premier Package Digital Premier w/ Sports Digital Showcase Entertainment Package Everything Package HD Digital Showcase MultiLatino Total HD Triple Play Premier Double Play Premier Tier w/ Sports Premier w/ Sports Double Play Total Premium Ultimate Pak Cinemax will still be available to purchase separately as a Premium channel. Customers who currently subscribe to Cinemax as a separate Premium channel or with our Digital Preferred with 1 Premium (Cinemax) service will continue to receive the channel. For those customers, as of July 10, 2019, the following channels will only be located on channels 1822 to 1835, where a vailable: More Max, Action Max, Thriller Max, 5Star Max, MovieMax, OuterMax, and Cinemax. We are notifying customers who currently subscribe to these channels through bill messages.

WCCT

 

Beginning June 26, 2019, we will no longer provide WCCT as part of the channel lineup in Bethel, Danbury, Ridgefield and Shelton, Connecticut. This is because our business agreement with the station’s owner to carry this out-of-market broadcast station in these towns has ended.

Letter to PURA May 23, 2019 Page 2 of 3

WCCT is a CW affiliate based outside of the local broadcast area for Bethel, Danbury, Ridgefield and Shelton. WCCT provides the same network programming carried on the local CW station, WPIX (SD channel 11; HD channel 1011). Other WCCT syndicated programming is also available on other local stations that remain on the local TV lineup.

WPIX

Beginning June 26, 2019, we will no longer provide WPIX as part of the channel lineup in Comcast/New Haven, Comcast/Seymour (except for Shelton), and Comcast/Waterbury. This is because our business agreement with the station’s owner to carry this out-of-market broadcast station in these towns has ended.

WPIX is a CW affiliate based outside of the local broadcast area for Comcast/New Haven, Comcast/Seymour, and Comcast/Waterbury. WPIX provides the same network programming carried on the local CW station, WCCT (Comcast/New Haven channel 11, HD channel 1020; Comcast/Seymour and Comcast Waterbury channel 7, HD channel 1020). Other WPIX syndicated programming is also available on other local stations that remain on the local TV lineup. We understand that WPIX’s news, weather, sports and other content may be of interest to our customers. While this station will no longer be available, customers can view content for WPIX at www.pixll.com.

Please feel free to contact me at 860-505-3477 if you have any questions regarding this filing.

Sincerely,

Sharon L. Codeanne Director, Government & Regulatory Affairs

**********************************************************************************

5. Correspondence:   none to enter.

6. Election for CTAC Officers:
T
he next meeting on August 7 will schedule the election of new CTAC officers, especially
as our Chairperson Tad Weinstein is resigning the CTAC because he has moved his residence to   Milford which is outside of this CTAC franschise district. A replacement for Chair is thus
needed as a priority.

7. Membership
New advisors for CTAC are needed to fill vancant seats on the council. Members are
requested to inquire to activists for volunteers.

History question: Laurel Coleman asks all members present how they were individually
recruited to join CTAC.   Tad Weinstein, Peaches Quinn, and George Alexander have all been
members for more than 20 years.   Johnes Ruta began coming to meetings in 2007 to request
Comcast to carry the Classic Arts Showcase (CAS) free satellite feed on the Comcast lineup.
CAS is a cultural channel featuring short videos of classical music concerts, ballet, and cultural
stories. Comcast never fulfilled this request, but Johnes, an independent art curator for the
New Haven Free Public Library at that time, was subsequently appointed in 2008 as a CTAC
Advisor by New Haven Mayor John DeStefano.   In 2008, New Haven Citizens Television (CTV)
subsequently offers CAS coverage in many vacant time slots on their program lineup.
[ Note to Joe Schofield from Johnes Ruta:   SINCERE THANKS for this promotion of general culture !! ]

8.   Issues: Privacy Rights.

Discussion on general cable television in the present age of WiFi, Public WiFi, FireStick technology,
and other Apps, Comcast X1 programming, Netflix, Amazon Prime, et cetera.

In the Connecticut Legislative representation, promotion of Net Neutrality, and maximum privacy
protections are issues to be observed and promoted to cable franchises with CTAC concensus.



Next meeting Wednesday, August 7, 2019 at 6:00PM.

Meeting adjourned: 7:11 PM.

June 7th , 2019 Minutes respectfully submitted by Johnes Ruta (New Haven) Acting Secretary.
August 2nd, 2019

20
Jun
2019

May 1, 2019 Minutes

CTAC Meeting Wednesday, May 1st, 2019 

Attendees: 
Tad Weinstein – (West Haven._ –  Chair
George Alexander – (Hamden) – Treasurer
Peaches Quinn – (New Haven) – Vice Chair
Yvonne Manning-Jones  – (New Haven ) – Advisor.
John Jessen – (New Haven Public Library System) – Advisor
Johnes Ruta – (New Haven) – Acting Secretary
Laurel Coleman – (Hamden) – Advisor – joins meeting by telephone.

Meeting convened at 6:14.

  1. Review of April 3, 2019 Minutes
    Two corrections made before meeting,
    John Jessen – makes Motion to accept April Minutes.   Yvonne seconds this Motion.
    Vote unanimous.2.  COMCAST Report – Report received from Sharon Codeanne.
    Sharon’s report indicates Comcast subscription price increase + $5.00.George Alexander comments on his call to Comcast Service regarding the fuzzy television
    signal at his house, the Comcast Service Rep replied: “Buy a new house.” (!!) It is agreed
    by all advisors that this was an inappropriate statement by Comcast.Peaches Quinn has two personal complaints about the new Comcast X1 hand-held remote:
    “The previous version of the remote was more ergonomic than the newer one.: Peaches has
    brought in both examples to demonstrate the lesser usability of the newer remote, asking
    “Why was this new design adopted whem it is less ergonomic, especially for people with
    hand-usage disabilities ?”Peaches raises a second issue about Comcast: they have recently implemented a new
    sreeen-saver on her X1, so that when the screen-saver activates, she could not resume
    her TV viewing. She then needed to call Comcast Tech, and then needed to reboot the
    cable-box
    to return to TV ! The Comcast Service Rep said that this might be a cable
    connection issue.As there is much discussion of NetFlix as one of the X1 viewing options, Johnes asks
    “What is the availability of foreign films on NetFlix, as all available films appear to
    be only popular box-office items?”Johnes questions the status of the proposed Bill 6421 in the CT Legislature , which would
    regulate cable television rates in CT?   None of the members has any news on this issue.
  2. CTV Report –   CTV absent.
  3. CTAC Treasurer’s Report.

    The current budget balance is over $10,000.
    George Alexander recommends that we make a contribution to the Partnership Center
    for Adult Day Care in Hamden. There is a donation matching program in effect, ending
    May 31, though this is not “$1 : $1”. George suggests a $3,000 donation for distribution among the three towns of the Partnership Center Adult Day Care program.John Jessen notes that monies given to any Not-For-Profit can be used in any way they wish Peaches points out that George is also the Treasurer for the Partnership Center Adult Day Care   program. In effect, this would be a conflict-of-interest for George to administer a donation to this group. Other agencies would be Mary Wade House in Fair Haven, and Senior Housing.Tad makes a Motion to pass George’s proposal. Voting results: 2 in favor: George and Tad,
    and 4 against: Peaches, Yvonne, John J, and Johnes. Abstain: Laurel.
    Proposal defeated.

Peaches makes a Motion proposal for a contribution to Hamden Day Care for coverage
of the facility’s cable TV subscriptions for their residents. $1,000 to each town, to each
Day Centers. Peaches will identify designated recipients. Johnes seconded this Motion.
Vote: Yes -5, No – 2.   Motion carried.

John Jessen says that this action needs time to be thought about. Yvonne says she would
like to see money spent on community subjects.

5. Tad Weinstein’s status at CTAC: Tad states that he still receives mail at his West Haven address,
so that the West Haven Mayor’s office has granted him an extension until September to
serve on CTAC as a representative of West Haven.

Next meeting Wednesday, June 5, 2019 at 6:00PM.

Meeting adjourned: 7:20 PM.

May 1, 2019 Minutes respectfully submitted by Johnes Ruta (New Haven) Acting Secretary.

25
Apr
2019

April 3, 2019 Minutes

CTAC Meeting Wednesday, April 3rd 2019 

Attendees: 
Tad Weinstein – (West Haven._ –  Chair
Peaches Quinn – (New Haven) – Vice Chair
George Alexander – (Hamden) – Treasurer
Laurel Coleman – (Hamden) – Advisor
Yvonne Manning-Jones  – (New Haven ) – Advisor.
Johnes Ruta – (New Haven) – Acting Secretary
Sharon Codeanne – COMCAST Representative

Meeting convened at 6:05.

  1. Review of March 13, 2019 Minutes
    Sharon talks about the PEGPETIA Fund – says that every cable franchise still must provide 6.5%
    of gross revenues to PEGPETIA.

    Laurel Coleman makes Motion to accept March Minutes. George Alexander seconds the
    Motion. Vote unanimous.

    2.  COMCAST Report – Sharon Codeanne.

    Community Relations
    * Comcast launched Amazon Prime Video app on Xfinity X1 in December, giving Xfinity X1
    customers easy access to thousands of additional premium shows and movies.
    * Our annual Comcast Cares Day will take place on Saturday, May 4th – Comcast employees
    will be volunteeringat various projects at the East Rock School on Nash Street in New Haven.
    All are invited to attend.

    Marketing
    * Zee Living HD notified that, effective January 11, 2019, it will be ceasing operations.
    * Effective April 12, 2019, Comcast will be offereing a new Spanish-language channel,
    RCN Novelas to its Xfinity Latino Package. RCN Novelas is a Spanish-language network
    designed for women with a focus on telenovelas and dramas.
    * Comcast programming agreement with TuTV to carry Bandamax, De Pelicula, De Pelicula
    Clasico, Telehit, and RMS/Ritmoson expires on April 8, 2019, and these channels will
    no longer be available. These channels are carried on Xfinity Latino.
    * On April 9, 2019, we are launching QVC 2, QVC 2 HD, QVC 3, and QVC 3 HD on
    Limited Basic.

    Miscellaneous
    * Comcast annual support check for $2,000 was sent to the Advisory Council in
    January 2019.

    * Peaches Quinn COMCAST questions:
    (a)   “Comcast equipment in New Haven is old. – Is there any plan to upgrade the
    network equipment ?”
    Sharon C.: “The Comcast equipment is not outdated.”
    (b)   Peaches relates that a service person replaced her cable line to the street pole
    and the “tag board” that wires go into.
    Sharon C. explains that that is the so-called “drop” from t he street to the house.
    She says she “will do research on these technical functions and provide more info.”

    (c) Peaches question #2: regarding Xfinity X1 – her Netflix access seems to have
    disappeared from her Apps screen.   “Movies are limited more than her Netflix
    subscription.

    * George Alexander asks about the digital picture breakup while watching DVR recordings.
    Tad explains that this happens on all providers.

    CTAC Comments
    Yvonne mentions that the Comcast cell-phone system is on the Verizon platform.

Discussion on cable TV rates jurisdiction: CT Legislature Proposed Bill 6421 to give
CT jurisdiction on rate increases is favored by CTAC. However this requires that
            Title 16 of the General Statutes be amended to regulate cable television rates.

George Alexander asks Sharon is Comcast has any discount rates for Adult Day Care
facilities?   Sharon Codeanne specifies that at this time there are group discount rates
“only for Boys and Girls Clubs.”

  1. CTV Report – files by Joseph Schofield   CTV Executive Director

    Production Classes
    CTV holds its spring orientation April 4th, for field and studio production classes.
    53 applicants have been invited, of which we expect half to show up, and only half
    to complete the training courses. This has been our history. We continue to struggle
    to accommodate all of our priducers with studio time.

    Podcast
    CTV is finalizing the establishment of its Podcast room across from the main studio.
    We will be able to do both audio and video podcasts. It will be open to the public
    without individuals having to take a course.

    Cord-Cutting
    Comcast (and, thus, CTV) continues to lose subscribers. Over the past 17 years, CTV
    has lost around 20,000 subscribers, resulting in the loss of $19 5,000 annually. In the
    past 4 years, the CTV staff has gone from 10 members to 6. The remaining staff has
    stepped up to fill the gaps. Management staff has foregone pay increases. The staff
    and Board are seeking other revenue streams.

    Mortgage

    Wells Fargo Bank is renewing our mortgage for another 5 year term in Julu. By purchasing
    our current location, CTV has save $30,000 annually in rental/occupancy fees.

  2. Correspondence
    George tells us that the annual Post Office Box fee of $234 is coming due.
    Peaches makes a Motion to make this payment.   Tad seconds this Motion,
    Vote is unanimous.

    5. Tad Weinstein announces that he is moving his residence to Milford in the next months,
    so that will no longer be qualified to represent West Haven at CTAC. He feels he must
    resign next month. The members are shocked, as Tad has been the Chairperson for
    more that 15 years.

    Peaches makes a Motion to maintain Tad until July of this year. We recommend that
    we petition the Mayor of West Haven to retain Tad as long as possible.
    Johnes seconds this Motion.   All vote YES !

Next meeting Wednesday, May 1, 2019 at 6:00PM.

Meeting adjourned: 7:15 PM.

April 3, 2019 Minutes respectfully submitted by Johnes Ruta (New Haven) Acting Secretary.

 

13
Mar
2019

March 13, 2019 Minutes

CTAC Meeting Wednesday, March 13th 2019 

Attendees: 
Tad Weinstein – (West Haven._ –  Chair
Peaches Quinn – (New Haven) – Vice Chair
John Jessen – (New Haven Library System) – Advisor
Johnes Ruta – (New Haven) – Acting Secretary
Yvonne Manning-Jones  – (New Haven ) – Advisor. – attending via telephone link.

Meeting convened at 6:15.

  1. February Minutes – Tad asks that last sentence of Feb. Item 8 be struck. Incorrect spelling of
    John Jessen’s name “Jesson” is asked to be corrected. Tad makes motion to accept Feb, Minutes
    with corrections as stated above. Peaches seconds motion to accept Minutes as ammended.
    Vote unanimous.

    2.  BY-LAWS – Tad asks that wording indicating “DPUC” to “PURA.”

    3. Statewide Cable Council – Council decided to sponsor Bill HB 5486 in CT Legislature –
    an Act to stop the State Legislature from taking monies from Cable Television Council fund.

The Connecticut Statewide Video Advisory Council (SVAC) has unanimously endorsed 3
bills to protect community television public access programming and also calls for an end
to the regulatory sweep of PEGPETIA funds.

HB5990 – Establishment of a Fee Paid by Multichannel Video.

HB5486 – An act repealing the transfer of public, educational, and governmental programming
and education technology investment account to the General Fund.

SB677 – Providers of Telecommunication Services for Level Technology for Stations and
upgrading of equipment. This will require providers of telecommunication services to deliver
the same level of technology for all stations. (Net equality.)

Proposed Bill No. 6421 – an act concerning the regulation of cable television rates.
Requires that Title 16 of the General Statutes be amended to regulate cable television rates.

4.     It is noted that $20 Million per year is collected from Cable Providers who gather monies
from television subscriptions. In 2014, Don Levi wrote a letter to the CT State Senate
to request clarification of this process.

5.     Johnes asks how to learn which CT Cable Council serve which areas of the state?
He is referered to the PURA Website.

Next meeting Wednesday, April 3, 2019 at 6:00PM.

Meeting adjourned: 6:55 PM.

20
Feb
2019

February 6, 2019 Minutes

CTAC Meeting Wednesday, February 6th 2019 

Attendees: 
Tad Weinstein – (West Haven._ –  Chair
Peaches Quinn – (New Haven) – Vice Chair
Laurel Coleman (Hamden) Advisor
John Jessen – (New Haven Library System) – Advisor
Yvonne Manning-Jones  – (New Haven ) — Advisor.
George Alexander – (Hamden) – Treasurer
Johnes Ruta – (New Haven) – Acting Secretary   – attending and recording Minutes from NYC
via telephone link.

Meeting convened at 6:15.

 

  1. December Minutes — No changes needed. Peaches motion to accept. Tad seconded.
    Vote unanimous.  There was no January meeting.
  2. Comcast — not present.
    Corporate communique received January 24, 2019 from Sharon Codeanne:A new ad-supported streaming service will be led by Bonnie Hammer. Mark Lazarus adds oversight of the Cable Entertainment portfolio, NBC News, MSNBC and CNBC. Jeff Shell’s role expands to include NBC Entertainment, international and Telemundo. Donna Langley promoted to Chairman, Universal Filmed Entertainment Group.

NBCUniversal announced today the planned launch of a new streaming service providing consumers access to world-class premium content for free, with valuable partnership opportunities for advertisers and distributors. The service, which will launch in early 2020, will be led by Bonnie Hammer, who has been promoted to Chairman, Direct-to-Consumer and Digital Enterprises for NBCUniversal.

This innovative new service will draw on NBCUniversal’s large content library, as well as its broad reach of over 90 million U.S. households, plus Comcast and Sky’s leading technology platforms. It will feature some of the world’s most popular television and film franchises, including homegrown original programming as well as content from outside partners.

The ad-supported service will be available at no cost to NBCUniversal’s pay TV subscribers in the U.S. and major international markets. Comcast Cable and Sky will provide the service to their 52 million subscribers. An ad-free version will also be available for a fee. Additionally, non-pay TV customers can purchase a subscription to the service. Consistent with the company’s long-standing strategy to distribute its content broadly, NBCUniversal will continue to license content to other studios and platforms, while retaining rights to certain titles for its new service.

Hammer will build a team that will include key executives from Sky’s OTT offering, NOW TV, and throughout NBCUniversal. In addition, NBCUniversal’s Digital Enterprises group, led by Maggie Suniewick, will move into Hammer’s consolidated digital group.

“NBCUniversal has some of the world’s most valuable intellectual property and top talent, both in front of and behind the camera. Many of the most-watched shows on today’s popular streaming platforms come from NBCUniversal. Our new service will be different than those presently in the market and it will be built on the company’s strengths, with NBCUniversal’s great content and the technology expertise, broad scale and the wide distribution of Comcast Cable and Sky,” said Steve Burke, CEO, NBCUniversal.

He added, “People are watching premium content more than ever, but they want more flexibility and value. NBCUniversal is perfectly positioned to offer a variety of choices, due to our deep relationships with advertisers and distribution partners, as well as our data-targeting capabilities. Advertising continues to be a major part of the entertainment ecosystem and we believe that a streaming service, with limited and personalized ads, will provide a great consumer experience.”

As Chairman, NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment and Cable Studios, Hammer has had executive oversight of leading media brands USA Network, SYFY, Bravo, Oxygen, E! Entertainment and Universal Kids. She oversaw two Hollywood studios, UCP and Wilshire Studios. UCP is one of the industry’s fastest-growing studios, working with top Hollywood creative talent to develop and produce content for linear channels and digital streaming services including Netflix, Amazon and Hulu. In 2018, Hammer led her portfolio to its 15th consecutive year of growth in both profit and revenue. Hammer serves on the Board of Directors of eBay and IAC/InteractiveCorp.

Separately, Burke announced a reorganization of his senior leadership team, which will align its content businesses under two executives, Mark Lazarus and Jeff Shell.

Lazarus has been named Chairman, NBCUniversal Broadcast, Cable, Sports and News, and will assume responsibility for most of the company’s East Coast-based content businesses, including the cable entertainment portfolio, NBC News, MSNBC and CNBC. In addition, Lazarus will continue to oversee the NBC Sports Group, NBCUniversal Owned Television Stations and NBC Affiliate Relations.

Since joining the Company in 2011, Lazarus has overseen NBC Sports and added oversight of Broadcast for NBC in 2016. Under his leadership, the company has forged new deals with the Olympics, NFL, NASCAR, the Premier League and the NHL, among many other partnerships. In addition, Sunday Night Football has been primetime’s number one show for a record of eight consecutive years. Prior to joining NBCUniversal, Lazarus was President of Media and Marketing at CSE and President of Turner Entertainment Group.

Shell has been named Chairman, NBCUniversal Film and Entertainment, adding NBC Entertainment to his purview. He will continue to oversee film and will also now be responsible for NBCUniversal’s international division and Telemundo.

Shell most recently served as Chairman of Universal Filmed Entertainment Group (UFEG), overseeing all divisions of the global film operations, as well as DreamWorks Animation, Fandango and Brand Development. He was previously Chairman of NBCUniversal International and President of Comcast Programming Group. Since Shell joined UFEG in 2013, the studio celebrated four years of record profit — and the two most profitable years in the studio’s 107-year history.

  1. CTV – Joe Schofield — sent message with apology not present, will attend March 6 Meeting.
    INviting CTAC members to attend CTV Feb 14 Board Meeting.

    4.  Budget 2019 — George Alexander: “Basically the same as 2018. No need to change anything.
    Peaches motion to accept. Tad second. Vote unanimous.
    Annual Budget Report was filed on-time to PURA, Wednesday January 23.

    5.  Correspondence – George — Comcast canceled some Hindi programming.
    Individual sending Comcast complaint — customer wants sports programming to be optional.
    Another letter– somebody sent stub with subscription payment to CTAC instead of Comcast.–
    payment of $10.  Peaches will convey improperly sent payment to Sharon Codeanne.

    6.  COMCAST
    Comcast has allocated nearly $700,00 — multi-Gigabit high speed work area for innovation
    Comcast Business Innovation Lounge — sponsoring workspace for others to use on East Street,
    New Haven, Has various pods   gym, restaurant cafe,mail help spa salon, high-tech open space
    design.
    Not public space, but for business projects. Has to have an issued key to open outer door.
    Developer:Dave Salinas.

    7.  BY-LAWS — George reviewed DPUC website and transferred verbiage:
    Changes:   CTAC requires largest city library system (New Haven) to attend CTAC meetings.
    Yvonne:  DPUC (PURA)  By-Laws were previously 3 pages, CTAC was 9 pages, Yvonne cut-out
    inconsistencies on CTAC’ BY-Laws. There were and are some formatting differences,but
    requirements contents are the same.  Two PDF files received from Yvonne are also attached
    with these February Minutes.

    Note:  George speaks saying that he is an appointed commissioner of the Town of Hamden, and must
    report any changes to the Hamden Town Council.

    DIFFERING CABLE ISSUES – Frontier vs. Comcast

8..  Laurel Colerman asks if there can be more cable providers available,  Example: Frontier’s port
at Bella Vista  can only handle a set number of subscribers for TV cable, VIOP, and internet,
Subscribers to Frontier had to go onto a waiting list, some many switched to Comcast.
Due to technological limitations, Frontier is not able to meet the service requests at Bella Vista.
Tad will look into the technical aspects at the State Meeting.

  1. John talks about technical aspects of land-lines vs. VOIP, —  discussion on differing advantages.
    issues of battery life of equipment discussed.10. New Business — nothing.

    Next meeting Wednesday, March 13th 6:00PM.

    Meeting adjourned: 7:05 PM.

 

 

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Dec
2018

December 11, 2018 Minutes

CTAC   – Monthly Meeting Minutes – December 11, 2018

Members in attendance:
Tad Weinstein (West Haven), Chair
Peaches Quinn (New Haven)   Vice-Chair
Yvonne Manning-Jones   (New Haven) Advisor
Laurel Coleman (Hamden) Advisor
Jennifer Sacco (Guest – former Hamden member)
Johnes Ruta, (New Haven), Advisor, Acting Secretary

Location: annual Dinner – App’s Restaurant, Capt. Thomas Blvd., W est Haven, CT

Meeting called to order 6:55 PM.

1.     November 7 Minutes
No changes needed.
Tad makes Motion to accept: with no changes.
2nd by Peaches Quinn.   Vote unanimous.

2.   CTAC / State of CT Cable Advisory – By-Laws update
Yvonne Manning-Jones, who is working on this update for the CTAC website,
notes that CTAC By-Laws are not corresponding to State of Connecticut Statutes.
Yvonne will make wording changes to reflect the State of CT By-Laws wording.
She says that there are no meaningful differences. Johnes will modify the wording
of item #9 the November Minutes.

3.   Video Contest for 2019.    Planning for youth or public PSA video contest will begin at January meeting.

4    Next CTAC Meeting will take place Wednesday, January 2, 2019 6:00PM, at CTV Studios.
 Depending on members ability to attend on that date, the meeting might be by teleconference.

5.     Meeting adjourned 7:25 PM.

December Submitted 12/27/2018 by Johnes Ruta, CTAC Acting Secretary, New Haven Rep #2

27
Nov
2018

November 7, 2018 Minutes revised

CTAC   – Monthly Meeting Minutes – November 7, 2018 revised

Members in attendance:
Tad Weinstein (West Haven), Chair
Yvonne Manning-Jones   (New Haven) Advisor
Johnes Ruta, (New Haven), Advisor, Acting Secretary
John Jessen (New Haven Free Public Library System)
Peaches Quinn (New Haven)   Vice-Chair   – teleconference attendance

Meeting called to order 6:10 PM.

1.   October 3 Minutes
No changes needed.
Peaches makes Motion to accept: with changes.
2nd by John Jessen .   Vote unanimous.

  1. CTV
    Tad reads CTV Report filed by CTV Executive Director Joe Schofield to members present and Peaches
    Quinn on phone.1. Community Utilization – CTV continues to operate at full-studio program utilization.
    We have twenty-two regularly scheduled monthly studio programs, nineteen of which are live.
    We also do an average of three random programs monthly,

    We have more than three dozen field-produced and sponsored programs.

    We continue to expand and utilize our live productions thanks to the internet technology
    that does not require us to be hard-wired at the source of the event,

    2. Production Classes – CTV continues to provide basic video production classes at no charge to
    community residents. Our most recent classes certified eight new studio and field producers,
    three of which will be doing a sports, music, and children’s program.

    3. Developmental / Fundraising – CTV continues to be concerned about the “cable cord-cuttimg”
    phenomenon across the country, which has a direct impact on public access funding in
    Connecticut.   Since 2002, CTV has lost twenty thousand subscribers, which amounts to
    a loss of nearly $200,000 annually. Accordingly, CTV has undertaken a number of streams
    which are proprietary and cannot be disclosed here.

    4. FCC – The Federal Communications Commission has launched an offensive against public
    funding, allowing cable companies to reduce the 5% gross receipts paid to the state by an offset

    of “In-Kind contributions.”   we encourage the CTAC to go to the FCC website and comment

    on this action.

CTAC members discussion about phenomenon of “cable-cutting” – that is, cable subscribers
dropping their service because of the high monthly costs of cable TV.   Johnes notes that the only
regulation of cable rates is on the Federal level and not in the jurisdiction of state regulators.
Also, Network digital local broadcasts (over airwaves) has dropped because of lack of enforcement
of franchise requirements, leaving much of the non-cable-subscribing public without network programming.

3.   December CTAC annual holiday rotating dinner-meeting will take place in West Haven Tuesday
December 11 at Apps Restaurant on Captain Thomas Boulevard. 6:00 meeting has been booked.

Comcast Representative Sharon Codeanne, CTV Executive Director Joe Schofiled, and
former member Jennifer will be invited to attend.

4.   Treasurer Report – not available because CTAC Treasurer George Alexander is absent from this meeting.
Therefore, the amount of money in CTAC fund is not available.

5.   2019 Video Contest – Tad Weinstein and Peaches Quinn advise that we should take a break from having
a Video Contest this year. Johnes Ruta advises in that case that we should use the time to develop
new strategies for public outreach.

6.   Annual Report – Tad Weinstein is working on the Annual Report to be submitted to PURA.
Tad states that his report should be available in December.

7. New Business – Peaches recommends that CTAC develop a new Customer Satisfaction Survey,

with random selection of survey.     Results to be broken down by towns, rated how public
reaction to subscription Pricing and Rates, Price and Value. Further categories should be
determined and results reported.

8. Digital Broadcast Reception issues – Many people receiving digital television broadcast over airwaves
report that directional signals change reception quality from day to day.   Johnes suggests that
this is also because of lack of enforcement of network digital broadcast requirements.

CTAC RECOMMENDATION: PURA should investigate TV non-compliance with digital
            broadcast requirements.

9. By-Laws update – Yvonne Manning-Jones, who is working on this update for the CTAC website,
notes that CTAC By-Laws are not corresponding to State of Connecticut Statutes. Yvonne will
make wording changes to our local Hamden/New Haven/West Haven CTAC By-Laws to
correspond to ST CTAC’s By-Laws.

10   Next CTAC Meeting will take place Tuesday, December 11, 2018 6:00PM, at Apps Restaurant,
Captain Thomas Boulevard, West Haven. This meeting will not be open to the public.    

11.   Meeting adjourned 6:45 PM.

November Minutes Submitted 11/27/2018 by Johnes Ruta, CTAC Acting Secretary, New Haven Rep #2

3
Oct
2018

October 3, 2018 Minutes

CTAC   – Monthly Meeting Minutes – October 3,, 2018

Members in attendance:
Tad Weinstein (West Haven), Chair
Yvonne Manning-Jones   (New Haven) Associate
Johnes Ruta, (New Haven), Advisor, Acting Secretary
John Jessen (New Haven Free Public Library System)
Laurel Coleman (Hamden)
Peaches Quinn (New Haven)   Vice-Chair

Meeting called to order 6:05 PM.

1.   September 3 Minutes
a.
Tad asks for one correction: Item #8 “Frontier has not established FIOS.” Change to:
“Frontier has established FIOS.”

b. New member name “John Jesson” is misspelled. Correct to “John Jessen.” Sorry!

John Jessen makes Motion to accept: with changes. 2nd by Tad Weinstein. . Vote unanimous.

  1. COMCAST Report: –   No Comcast representative present.
    Comcast responded in September to George’s questions about the internet browser FLASH Player
    compatibility.   Comcast responded that they will make the browser correction to adapt this.

    3.   CTAC By-Laws
    Yvonne is working on edit if the present CTAC By-Laws to match the Statewide Connecticut
    Cable Television Advisory By-Laws.   To be applied to the CTAC website: http://cableadvosory.org/

    4.   CTV
    CTV has not provided a representative to attend the CTAC meeting during the calendar year 2018.
    Johnes makes a Motion to contact Citizens Television (CTV) management to do so soon.
    Laurel Seconds this Motion. Vote unanimous.

  2. CTAC Membership
    Need to fill vacant posts for all three towns as chartered.   Hamden: Members of the public can apply to the Hamden Town Clerk.   Commissioners are elected by the Hamden Town Council.
    Tad makes Motion to contact each town in jurisdiction to provide proper membership.

    Laurel will contact the Hamden Town Clerk to request new appointments.

    6.   New Business
    1. Presidential Alert was broadcast today over cell phone systems to all subscribers.
    Discussion as to existing law making it illegal for any government employee to use this
    for any kind of political or business promotional purpose.

    2. Peaches brings up general discussion of “Roles & Responsibilities” of CTAC and CTAC members
    on CTAC website http://cableadvisory.org/

    7.   New Video Contest proposal for 2019.
    Videos must be entered as PSA (Public Service Announcement).

Meeting discussion of 2017-2018 Video Contest and student winners.     Peaches describes
aspects of the video contest to new CTAC member John Jessen.
Peaches: “Our budget should put forward some money to schools for video equipment.”
Tad: “In the previous contest, schooks did not want to help publicize the Video Contest,

despite the $1000 cash award available.”

John Jessen talks about Summer Camp Programs that teach video production and editing,
along with Math and Literacy programs,   CTV ran announcements.
The New Haven Board of Alders members, especially Jill Marks and Adam Marchand
should be contacted to ask for assistance with promotion.

Time Frame for the 2019 Video Contest”
November – lists of individuals to contact for promotion.
January – Determine means to promote,contest, and time frame for
Contest criteria
Contest applications
Application Approvals
Entries
Judging
Awards

8. December CTAC meeting: Annual CTAC dinner –
Date – Tuesday, December 11, 6:00 PM.
It is West Haven’s turn: venue possibilities:
a. Biagetti’s (dining room is too loud)   b. Apps   (tentatively decided).

9.   Next CTAC Meeting will take place Wednesday, November 7.   6:00 PM., at CTV, 843 State Street,
New Haven, CT.    

10.   Meeting adjourned 7:07 PM.

October Minutes Submitted 10/16/2018 by Johnes Ruta, CTAC Acting Secretary, New Haven Rep #2

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