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HF 2151

1st Engrossment - 83rd Legislature (2003 - 2004) Posted on 12/15/2009 12:00am

KEY: stricken = removed, old language.
underscored = added, new language.
  1.1                          A bill for an act 
  1.2             relating to telecommunications; regulating certain 
  1.3             payments, credits, and interest charges; changing 
  1.4             various cable system provisions; amending Minnesota 
  1.5             Statutes 2002, sections 237.01, by adding a 
  1.6             subdivision; 237.06; 238.02, subdivision 3; 238.03; 
  1.7             238.08, subdivisions 3, 4; 238.081; 238.083, 
  1.8             subdivisions 2, 4; 238.084, subdivision 1; 238.11, 
  1.9             subdivision 2; 238.22, subdivision 13; 238.23; 238.24, 
  1.10            subdivisions 3, 4, 6, 9, 10; 238.242, subdivisions 1, 
  1.11            3; 238.25, subdivisions 5, 10; 238.35, subdivisions 1, 
  1.12            4; 238.36, subdivision 2; 238.39; 238.40; 238.43, 
  1.13            subdivision 1; 325E.02; proposing coding for new law 
  1.14            in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 237; repealing 
  1.15            Minnesota Statutes 2002, sections 238.01; 238.02, 
  1.16            subdivisions 2, 17, 18, 19, 25; 238.082; 238.083, 
  1.17            subdivisions 3, 5; 238.084, subdivisions 2, 3, 5; 
  1.18            238.12, subdivision 1a; 238.15; 238.35, subdivisions 
  1.19            2, 3; 238.36, subdivision 1; Minnesota Rules, parts 
  1.20            7810.0100, subparts 16, 17, 18, 30, 32, 33, 39; 
  1.21            7810.0700; 7810.3400; 7810.3500; 7810.3600; 7810.3700; 
  1.22            7810.3800; 7810.4200; 7810.4400; 7810.4500; 7810.4600; 
  1.23            7810.4700; 7810.4800; 7810.5600; 7810.6900; 7810.8760; 
  1.24            7815.0100; 7815.0200; 7815.0300; 7815.0400; 7815.0500; 
  1.25            7815.0600. 
  1.27                             ARTICLE 1 
  1.29     Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 237.01, is 
  1.30  amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
  1.31     Subd. 8.  [LOCAL EXCHANGE CARRIER.] "Local exchange carrier"
  1.32  means a telephone company or telecommunications carrier 
  1.33  providing local exchange service. 
  1.34     Sec. 2.  [237.155] [CREDIT FOR INCORRECT DIRECTORY 
  1.35  ASSISTANCE.] 
  2.1      Any person that provides directory assistance to customers 
  2.2   for a fee, either directly or by contracting with a third party, 
  2.3   must provide for an immediate credit to a customer that informs 
  2.4   the directory assistance provider that the provider has given 
  2.5   the customer incorrect information for which the provider 
  2.6   charged the customer a fee. 
  2.7      Sec. 3.  [237.665] [PROHIBITION AGAINST BILLING FOR 
  2.9      (a) A telephone company or telecommunications carrier 
  2.10  providing local service shall not include on a customer's bill a 
  2.11  charge for goods or services on behalf of a third-party service 
  2.12  provider unless the third-party service provider has obtained 
  2.13  the customer's prior express authorization to include such 
  2.14  charges on the customer's bill.  
  2.15     (b) If a customer of a telephone company or 
  2.16  telecommunications carrier notifies the telephone company or 
  2.17  telecommunications carrier that an unauthorized charge from a 
  2.18  third-party service provider has been included on the customer's 
  2.19  bill, then the telephone company or telecommunications carrier 
  2.20  shall remove the unauthorized charge.  The telephone company or 
  2.21  telecommunications carrier shall refund to the customer any 
  2.22  amounts paid for the unauthorized charges that were billed by 
  2.23  the telephone company or telecommunications carrier during the 
  2.24  six months prior to the customer's complaint, unless the 
  2.25  telephone company or telecommunications carrier can produce 
  2.26  within 14 calendar days of the complaint evidence to the 
  2.27  customer of prior express authorization by the customer. 
  2.28     (c) A third-party service provider meets the prior express 
  2.29  authorization requirements of this section only if it obtains or 
  2.30  receives a customer's written authorization in the form of a 
  2.31  letter of agency, a customer's oral authorization verified by an 
  2.32  independent third party, or a copy of an e-mail notice of 
  2.33  verification as described in clause (3). 
  2.34     (1) If the third-party service provider obtains the 
  2.35  customer's written authorization in the form of a letter of 
  2.36  agency, it must be a separate or easily separable document.  The 
  3.1   sole purpose of the letter of agency shall be to authorize a 
  3.2   charge for goods or services to appear on the customer's 
  3.3   telephone bill.  The letter of agency must be of sufficient size 
  3.4   to be clearly legible and must contain clear and unambiguous 
  3.5   language that contains separate statements for each good or 
  3.6   service for which the customer is agreeing to be billed.  The 
  3.7   letter of agency must be signed and dated by the customer. 
  3.8      (2) If the customer's authorization is oral, the 
  3.9   authorization must be verified by an independent third-party 
  3.10  verifier.  The verification is valid only if: 
  3.11     (i) the independent third party confirms the customer's 
  3.12  identity with information unique to the customer unless the 
  3.13  customer refuses, then that fact must be noted; and 
  3.14     (ii) the independent third party informs the customer that 
  3.15  the customer is agreeing to be billed for goods or services that 
  3.16  will appear as a charge on the customer's telephone bill. 
  3.17     (3) If a customer enters a contract via the Internet with a 
  3.18  third-party service provider for goods or services which are 
  3.19  charged to the bill issued by the customer's telephone company 
  3.20  or telecommunications carrier providing local service, the 
  3.21  third-party service provider must, within 48 hours of receiving 
  3.22  the customer's authorization, send the customer, via e-mail, a 
  3.23  notice of verification confirming the authorization.  The 
  3.24  third-party service provider shall maintain a copy of the notice 
  3.25  of verification for the duration of the contract as a record of 
  3.26  the customer's express authorization to be charged for the goods 
  3.27  or services on the customer's telephone bill for local service. 
  3.28     (d) For direct-dialed calls, where the call itself 
  3.29  represents the service for which the charge is placed on a 
  3.30  customer's local telephone bill, such as "900 number" services 
  3.31  and "dial around" services, evidence that the call was placed 
  3.32  from the number that is subject to the telephone bill shall be 
  3.33  considered sufficient evidence of authorization for that call 
  3.34  for billing authorization purposes established in this section.  
  3.35  Nothing in this section shall be construed to change a telephone 
  3.36  company's or telecommunication carrier's obligations or affect a 
  4.1   telephone subscriber's rights under section 325F.692. 
  4.2      (e) This section does not apply to charges for collect 
  4.3   calls. 
  4.4      (f) Nothing in this section restricts the right of a 
  4.5   telephone company or telecommunications carrier to seek to 
  4.6   recover from a third-party service provider unauthorized charges 
  4.7   refunded to the customer by the telephone company or 
  4.8   telecommunications carrier. 
  4.9                              ARTICLE 2 
  4.10                        CABLE SYSTEM CHANGES 
  4.11     Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.02, 
  4.12  subdivision 3, is amended to read: 
  4.13     Subd. 3.  [CABLE COMMUNICATIONS SYSTEM.] (a) "Cable 
  4.14  communications system" means a system which operates that 
  4.15  provides the service of receiving and amplifying (1) programs 
  4.16  broadcast by one or more television or radio stations and (2) 
  4.17  other programs originated by a person operating a cable 
  4.18  communications company system or by another party, and 
  4.19  distributing person.  The system distributes those programs by 
  4.20  wire, cable, microwave, or other means, regardless whether the 
  4.21  means are owned or leased, to persons who subscribe to the 
  4.22  service.  
  4.23     (b) This definition does not include: 
  4.24     (a) (1) a system which that serves fewer than 50 
  4.25  subscribers or a system which that serves more than 50 but fewer 
  4.26  than 1,000 subscribers if the governing bodies of all political 
  4.27  subdivisions served by the system, vote, by resolution, to 
  4.28  remove the system from the provisions of this chapter.; provided 
  4.29  that: 
  4.30     (i) no part of a system, nor any area within the 
  4.31  municipality served by the system, may be removed from the 
  4.32  provisions of this chapter if more than 1,000 subscribers are 
  4.33  served by the system.; and 
  4.34     (ii) any system which serves serving more than 50 but fewer 
  4.35  than 1,000 subscribers that has been removed from the provisions 
  4.36  of this chapter shall be returned becomes subject to the 
  5.1   provisions of this chapter if the governing bodies of 50 percent 
  5.2   or more of the political subdivisions served by the system vote, 
  5.3   by resolution, in favor of the return; 
  5.4      (b) (2) a master antenna television system; 
  5.5      (c) (3) a specialized closed-circuit system which that does 
  5.6   not use the public rights-of-way for the construction of its 
  5.7   physical plant; and 
  5.8      (d) (4) a translator system which that receives and 
  5.9   rebroadcasts over-the-air signals.  
  5.10     Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.03, is 
  5.11  amended to read: 
  5.12     238.03 [APPLICABILITY.] 
  5.13     This chapter applies to every cable communications system 
  5.14  and every cable communications company, as defined in section 
  5.15  238.02, operating within the state, including a cable 
  5.16  communications company which constructs, operates and maintains 
  5.17  a cable communications system comprised in whole or in part 
  5.18  through the of facilities of a person franchised to offer common 
  5.19  or contract carrier services subject to regulation under chapter 
  5.20  237.  Persons possessing franchises for any of the purposes of 
  5.21  this chapter are subject to this chapter although no property 
  5.22  has been acquired, business transacted, or franchises exercised. 
  5.23     Sec. 3.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.08, 
  5.24  subdivision 3, is amended to read: 
  5.25     Subd. 3.  [MUNICIPAL OPERATION.] Nothing in this chapter 
  5.26  shall be construed to limit Any municipality from the right 
  5.27  to may construct, purchase, and operate cable communications 
  5.28  systems, or, to operate facilities and channels for community 
  5.29  television, including, but not limited to, public, educational, 
  5.30  and governmental access and local origination programming.  Any 
  5.31  municipal system, including the operation of community 
  5.32  television by a municipality, shall be is subject to this 
  5.33  chapter to the same extent as would any nonpublic cable 
  5.34  communications system. 
  5.35     Sec. 4.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.08, 
  5.36  subdivision 4, is amended to read: 
  6.1      Subd. 4.  [FEE, TAX, OR CHARGE.] Nothing in this chapter 
  6.2   shall be construed to limit the power of Any municipality to may 
  6.3   impose upon any person operating a cable communications company 
  6.4   system a fee, tax, or charge. 
  6.5      Sec. 5.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.081, is 
  6.6   amended to read: 
  6.7      238.081 [FRANCHISE PROCEDURE.] 
  6.8      Subdivision 1.  [PUBLICATION OF NOTICE.] The franchising 
  6.9   authority shall have published once each week for two successive 
  6.10  weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in each municipality 
  6.11  within the cable service territory, a notice of intent 
  6.12  to consider an application for an initial franchise, requesting 
  6.13  applications for the franchise.  
  6.14     Subd. 2.  [REQUIRED INFORMATION IN NOTICE.] The notice must 
  6.15  include at least the following information:  
  6.16     (1) the name of the municipality making the request; 
  6.17     (2) the closing date for submission of applications; 
  6.18     (3) a statement of the application fee, if any, and the 
  6.19  method for its submission; 
  6.20     (4) a statement by the franchising authority of the desired 
  6.21  system design and services to be offered; 
  6.22     (5) a statement by the franchising authority of criteria 
  6.23  and priorities against which the applicants for the franchise 
  6.24  must be evaluated; 
  6.25     (6) a statement that applications for the franchise must 
  6.26  contain at least the information required by subdivision 4; 
  6.27     (7) the date, time, and place for the public hearing, to 
  6.28  hear proposals from franchise applicants; and 
  6.29     (8) the name, address, and telephone number of the 
  6.30  individuals who may be contacted for further information.  
  6.31     Subd. 3.  [OTHER RECIPIENTS OF NOTICE.] In addition to the 
  6.32  published notice, the franchising authority shall mail copies of 
  6.33  the notice of intent to franchise to any person it has 
  6.34  identified as being a potential candidate for the franchise.  
  6.35     Subd. 4.  [CONTENTS OF FRANCHISING PROPOSAL.] (a) The 
  6.36  franchising authority shall require that proposals for a cable 
  7.1   communications franchise be notarized and contain, but not 
  7.2   necessarily be limited to, the following information: 
  7.3      (1) plans for channel capacity, including both the total 
  7.4   number of channels capable of being energized in the system and 
  7.5   the number of channels to be energized immediately; 
  7.6      (2) a statement of the television and radio broadcast 
  7.7   signals for which permission to carry will be requested from the 
  7.8   Federal Communications Commission; 
  7.9      (3) a description of the proposed system design and planned 
  7.10  operation, including at least the following items: 
  7.11     (i) the general area for location of antennae and the head 
  7.12  end, if known; 
  7.13     (ii) the schedule for activating two-way capacity; 
  7.14     (iii) the type of automated services to be provided; 
  7.15     (iv) the number of channels and services to be made 
  7.16  available for access cable broadcasting; and 
  7.17     (v) a schedule of charges for facilities and staff 
  7.18  assistance for access cable broadcasting; 
  7.19     (4) the terms and conditions under which particular service 
  7.20  is to be provided to governmental and educational entities; 
  7.21     (5) a schedule of proposed rates in relation to the 
  7.22  services to be provided, and a proposed policy regarding unusual 
  7.23  or difficult connection of services; 
  7.24     (6) a time schedule for construction of the entire system 
  7.25  with the time sequence for wiring the various parts of the area 
  7.26  requested to be served in the request for proposals; 
  7.27     (7) a statement indicating the applicant's qualifications 
  7.28  and experience in the cable communications field, if any; 
  7.29     (8) an identification of the municipalities in which the 
  7.30  applicant either owns or operates a cable communications system, 
  7.31  directly or indirectly, or has outstanding franchises for which 
  7.32  no system has been built; 
  7.33     (9) plans for financing the proposed system, which must 
  7.34  indicate every significant anticipated source of capital and 
  7.35  significant limitations or conditions with respect to the 
  7.36  availability of the indicated sources of capital; 
  8.1      (10) a statement of ownership detailing the corporate 
  8.2   organization of the applicant, if any, including the names and 
  8.3   addresses of officers and directors and the number of shares 
  8.4   held by each officer or director, and intracompany relationship 
  8.5   including a parent, subsidiary, or affiliated company; and 
  8.6      (11) a notation and explanation of omissions or other 
  8.7   variations with respect to the requirements of the proposal. 
  8.8      (b) Substantive amendments may not be made in a proposal 
  8.9   after a proposal has been submitted to the franchising authority 
  8.10  and before award of a franchise Upon submission of a proposal, 
  8.11  the municipality and applicant may negotiate franchise terms.  
  8.12     Subd. 5.  [TIME LIMIT TO SUBMIT APPLICATION.] The 
  8.13  franchising authority shall allow at least 20 days from the 
  8.14  first date of published notice to the closing date for 
  8.15  submitting applications.  
  8.16     Subd. 6.  [PUBLIC HEARING ON FRANCHISE.] A public hearing 
  8.17  before the franchising authority affording reasonable notice and 
  8.18  a reasonable opportunity to be heard with respect to all 
  8.19  applications for the franchise must be completed at least seven 
  8.20  days before the introduction of the adoption of a franchise 
  8.21  ordinance in the proceedings of the franchising authority.  
  8.22     Subd. 7.  [AWARD OF FRANCHISE.] Franchises may be 
  8.23  awarded only by ordinance or other official action by the 
  8.24  franchising authority.  
  8.25     Subd. 8.  [COSTS OF AWARDING FRANCHISE.] Nothing in this 
  8.26  section prohibits A franchising authority from recovering may 
  8.27  recover from a successful an applicant the entire reasonable and 
  8.28  necessary costs of the entire process of awarding the processing 
  8.29  a cable communications franchise.  
  8.31  SYSTEM.] Nothing contained in this section prohibits a 
  8.32  franchising authority from franchising a nonprofit or 
  8.33  municipally owned system.  The municipality or nonprofit entity 
  8.34  is considered an applicant for purposes of this section.  
  8.35     Subd. 10.  [FRANCHISE; JOINT POWERS.] In the cases of 
  8.36  municipalities acting in concert, the municipalities may 
  9.1   delegate to another entity such any duties, responsibilities, 
  9.2   privileges, or activities described in this section, if such the 
  9.3   delegation is proper according to state and local law.  
  9.4      Sec. 6.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.083, 
  9.5   subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
  9.7   sale or transfer of a franchise, including a sale or transfer by 
  9.8   means of a fundamental corporate change, requires the written 
  9.9   approval of the franchising authority.  The parties to the sale 
  9.10  or transfer of a franchise shall make a written request to the 
  9.11  franchising authority for its approval of the sale or transfer.  
  9.12  The franchising authority shall reply in writing within 30 days 
  9.13  of the request and shall indicate its approval of the request or 
  9.14  its determination that a public hearing is necessary if it 
  9.15  determines that a sale or transfer of a franchise may adversely 
  9.16  affect the company's subscribers.  The franchising authority 
  9.17  shall conduct a public hearing on the request within 30 days of 
  9.18  that determination.  
  9.19     Sec. 7.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.083, 
  9.20  subdivision 4, is amended to read: 
  9.21     Subd. 4.  [APPROVAL OR DENIAL OF TRANSFER REQUEST.] Within 
  9.22  30 days after the public hearing, The franchising authority 
  9.23  shall approve or deny in writing the sale or transfer request.  
  9.24  The approval must not be unreasonably withheld. 
  9.25     Sec. 8.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.084, 
  9.26  subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
  9.27     Subdivision 1.  [ALL SYSTEMS.] The following requirements 
  9.28  franchise provisions are required and apply to all classes A, B, 
  9.29  and C cable communications systems unless provided otherwise: 
  9.30     (a) a provision that The franchise complies shall comply 
  9.31  with the Minnesota franchise standards contained in this 
  9.32  section;. 
  9.33     (b) a provision requiring the franchisee and the 
  9.34  franchising authority to conform to state laws and rules 
  9.35  regarding cable communications not later than one year after 
  9.36  they become effective, unless otherwise stated, and to conform 
 10.1   to federal laws and regulations regarding cable as they become 
 10.2   effective; 
 10.3      (c) a provision limiting The initial and renewal franchise 
 10.4   term must be limited to not more than 15 years each;. 
 10.5      (d) a provision specifying that (c) The franchise is must 
 10.6   be nonexclusive;. 
 10.7      (e) (d) A provision prohibiting sale or transfer of the 
 10.8   franchise or sale or transfer of stock so as to create a new 
 10.9   controlling interest under section 238.083 is prohibited, except 
 10.10  at the approval of the franchising authority, which approval 
 10.11  must not be unreasonably withheld, and conditioned that the sale 
 10.12  or transfer is completed pursuant to section 238.083;. 
 10.13     (f) a provision granting (e) The franchising authority 
 10.14  collecting a franchise fee is granted the authority to audit the 
 10.15  franchisee's accounting and financial records upon reasonable 
 10.16  notice, and requiring that. 
 10.17     (f) The franchisee shall file with the franchising 
 10.18  authority annually reports of gross subscriber revenues and 
 10.19  other information as the franchising authority deems 
 10.20  appropriate;. 
 10.21     (g) Provisions specifying relating to subscribers must 
 10.22  specify: 
 10.23     (1) current subscriber charges or that the current charges 
 10.24  are available for public inspection in the municipality; 
 10.25     (2) the length and terms of residential subscriber 
 10.26  contracts, if they exist, or that the current length and terms 
 10.27  of residential subscriber contracts are available for public 
 10.28  inspection in the municipality; and 
 10.29     (3) the procedure by which subscriber charges are 
 10.30  established, unless such a provision is contrary to state or 
 10.31  federal law;. 
 10.32     (h) a provision indicating by title The office or officer 
 10.33  of the franchising authority that is responsible for the 
 10.34  continuing administration of the franchise; must be indicated by 
 10.35  title. 
 10.36     (i) a provision requiring The franchisee to shall indemnify 
 11.1   and hold harmless the franchising authority during the term of 
 11.2   the franchise, and to maintain throughout the term of the 
 11.3   franchise, liability insurance in an amount as the franchising 
 11.4   authority may require insuring both the franchising authority 
 11.5   and the franchisee with regard to damages and penalties which 
 11.6   that they may legally be required to pay as a result of the 
 11.7   exercise of the franchise;. 
 11.8      (j) a provision that At the time the franchise becomes 
 11.9   effective and thereafter until the franchisee has liquidated all 
 11.10  of its obligation with the franchising authority, the franchisee 
 11.11  shall furnish a performance bond, certificate of deposit, or 
 11.12  other type of instrument approved by the franchising authority 
 11.13  in an amount as the franchising authority deems to be adequate 
 11.14  compensation for damages resulting from the franchisee's 
 11.15  nonperformance.  The franchising authority may, from year to 
 11.16  year and in its sole discretion, reduce the amount of the 
 11.17  performance bond or instrument;. 
 11.18     (k) a provision that nothing contained in The franchise 
 11.19  must contain a provision that nothing relieves a person from 
 11.20  liability arising out of the failure to exercise reasonable care 
 11.21  to avoid injuring the franchisee's facilities while performing 
 11.22  work connected with grading, regrading, or changing the line of 
 11.23  a street or public place or with the construction or 
 11.24  reconstruction of a sewer or water system;. 
 11.25     (l) a provision that The franchisee's technical ability, 
 11.26  financial condition, and legal qualification were must have been 
 11.27  considered and approved by the franchising authority in a full 
 11.28  public proceeding that afforded reasonable notice and a 
 11.29  reasonable opportunity to be heard;. 
 11.30     (m) a provision requiring the construction of a cable 
 11.31  system with a channel capacity available for immediate or 
 11.32  potential use, equal to a minimum of 72 MHz of bandwidth, the 
 11.33  equivalent of 12 television broadcast channels.  For purposes of 
 11.34  this section, a cable system with a channel capacity, available 
 11.35  for immediate or potential use, equal to a minimum of 72 MHz of 
 11.36  bandwidth means:  the provision of a distribution system 
 12.1   designed and constructed so that a minimum of 72 MHz of 
 12.2   bandwidth, the equivalent of 12 television broadcast channels, 
 12.3   can be put into use with only the addition of the appropriate 
 12.4   headend equipment; 
 12.5      (n) a provision in initial franchises that there be a full 
 12.6   description of the system proposed for construction and a 
 12.7   schedule showing: 
 12.8      (1) that for franchise areas which will be served by a 
 12.9   system proposed to have fewer than 100 plant miles of cable: 
 12.10     (i) that within 90 days of the granting of the franchise, 
 12.11  the franchisee shall apply for the necessary governmental 
 12.12  permits, licenses, certificates, and authorizations; 
 12.13     (ii) that energized trunk cable must be extended 
 12.14  substantially throughout the authorized area within one year 
 12.15  after receipt of the necessary governmental permits, licenses, 
 12.16  certificates, and authorizations and that persons along the 
 12.17  route of the energized cable will have individual "drops" as 
 12.18  desired during the same period of time; and 
 12.19     (iii) that the requirement of this section may be waived by 
 12.20  the franchising authority only upon occurrence of unforeseen 
 12.21  events or acts of God; or 
 12.22     (2) that for franchise areas which will be served by a 
 12.23  system proposed to have 100 plant miles of cable or more, a 
 12.24  provision: 
 12.25     (i) that within 90 days of the granting of the franchise, 
 12.26  the franchisee shall apply for the necessary governmental 
 12.27  permits, licenses, certificates, and authorizations; 
 12.28     (ii) that engineering and design must be completed within 
 12.29  one year after the granting of the franchise and that a 
 12.30  significant amount of construction must be completed within one 
 12.31  year after the franchisee's receipt of the necessary 
 12.32  governmental permits, licenses, certificates, and 
 12.33  authorizations; 
 12.34     (iii) that energized trunk cable must be extended 
 12.35  substantially throughout the authorized area within five years 
 12.36  after commencement of construction and that persons along the 
 13.1   route of the energized cable will have individual "drops" within 
 13.2   the same period of time, if desired; and 
 13.3      (iv) that the requirement of this section be waived by the 
 13.4   franchising authority only upon occurrence of unforeseen events 
 13.5   or acts of God; The system capacity and system technical design 
 13.6   must be identified. 
 13.7      (n) The schedule for system construction must be identified.
 13.8      (o) Unless otherwise already provided for by local law, a 
 13.9   provision that the franchisee shall obtain a permit from the 
 13.10  proper municipal authority before commencing construction of a 
 13.11  cable communications system, including the opening or 
 13.12  disturbance of a street, sidewalk, driveway, or public place. 
 13.13  The provision must specify remedies available to the franchising 
 13.14  authority in cases where the franchisee fails to meet the 
 13.15  conditions of the permit;. 
 13.16     (p) Unless otherwise already provided for by local law, a 
 13.17  provision that wires, conduits, cable, and other property and 
 13.18  facilities of the franchisee must be located, constructed, 
 13.19  installed, and maintained in compliance with applicable codes.  
 13.20  The provision must also specify that the franchisee shall keep 
 13.21  and maintain its property so as not to unnecessarily interfere 
 13.22  with the usual and customary trade, traffic, or travel upon the 
 13.23  streets and public places of the franchise area or endanger the 
 13.24  life or property of any person;. 
 13.25     (q) Unless otherwise already provided for by local law, a 
 13.26  provision that the franchising authority and the franchisee 
 13.27  shall establish a procedure in the franchise for the relocation 
 13.28  or removal of the franchisee's wires, conduits, cables, and 
 13.29  other property located in the street, right-of-way, or public 
 13.30  place whenever the franchising authority undertakes public 
 13.31  improvements which that affect the cable equipment;. 
 13.32     (r) a provision incorporating by reference As a minimum, 
 13.33  the technical standards promulgated by the Federal 
 13.34  Communications Commission relating to cable communications 
 13.35  systems contained in subpart K of part 76 of the Federal 
 13.36  Communications Commission's rules and regulations relating to 
 14.1   cable communications systems and found in Code of Federal 
 14.2   Regulations, title 47, sections 76.601 to 76.617, must be 
 14.3   incorporated by reference into the franchise.  The results of 
 14.4   tests required by the Federal Communications Commission must be 
 14.5   filed within ten days of the conduct of the tests with the 
 14.6   franchising authority;. 
 14.7      (s) a provision establishing how The franchising authority 
 14.8   and the person operating a cable communications company system 
 14.9   shall determine who is to bear the costs of required special 
 14.10  testing; additional system testing required by the franchising 
 14.11  authority. 
 14.12     (t) a provision pertaining to the franchisee's construction 
 14.13  and maintenance of a cable communications system having the 
 14.14  technical capacity for nonvoice return communications which, for 
 14.15  purposes of this section, means the provision of appropriate 
 14.16  system design techniques with the installation of cable and 
 14.17  amplifiers suitable for the subsequent insertion of necessary 
 14.18  nonvoice communications electronic modules.  
 14.19  In cases where an initial franchise is granted, the franchisee 
 14.20  shall provide a cable communications system having the technical 
 14.21  capacity for nonvoice return communications. 
 14.22  When a franchise is renewed, sold, or transferred and is served 
 14.23  by a system that does not have the technical capacity for 
 14.24  nonvoice return communications, the franchising authority shall 
 14.25  determine when and if the technical capacity for nonvoice return 
 14.26  communications is needed after appropriate public proceedings at 
 14.27  the municipal level giving reasonable notice and a reasonable 
 14.28  opportunity to be heard; 
 14.29     (u) a provision stating that No signals of a class IV cable 
 14.30  communications channel may be transmitted from a subscriber 
 14.31  terminal for purposes of monitoring individual viewing patterns 
 14.32  or practices without the express written permission of the 
 14.33  subscriber.  The request for permission must be contained in a 
 14.34  separate document with a prominent statement that the subscriber 
 14.35  is authorizing the permission in full knowledge of its 
 14.36  provisions.  The written permission must be for a limited period 
 15.1   of time not to exceed one year, which is renewable at the option 
 15.2   of the subscriber.  No penalty may be invoked for a subscriber's 
 15.3   failure to provide or renew the authorization.  The 
 15.4   authorization is revocable at any time by the subscriber without 
 15.5   penalty of any kind.  The permission must be required for each 
 15.6   type or classification of class IV cable communications activity 
 15.7   planned for the purpose; 
 15.8      (1) No information or data obtained by monitoring 
 15.9   transmission of a signal from a subscriber terminal, including 
 15.10  but not limited to lists of the names and addresses of the 
 15.11  subscribers or lists that identify the viewing habits of 
 15.12  subscribers, may be sold or otherwise made available to any 
 15.13  party person other than to the company and its employees for 
 15.14  internal business use, or to the subscriber who is the subject 
 15.15  of that information, unless the company has received specific 
 15.16  written authorization from the subscriber to make the data 
 15.17  available;. 
 15.18     (2) Written permission from the subscriber must not be 
 15.19  required for the systems conducting systemwide or individually 
 15.20  addressed electronic sweeps for the purpose of verifying system 
 15.21  integrity or monitoring for the purpose of billing. 
 15.22  Confidentiality of this information is subject to clause (1);. 
 15.23     (3) For purposes of this provision, a "class IV cable 
 15.24  communications channel" means a signaling path provided by a 
 15.25  cable communications system to transmit signals of any type from 
 15.26  a subscriber terminal to another point in the communications 
 15.27  system; 
 15.28     (v) a provision specifying (u) The procedure for the 
 15.29  investigation and resolution by the franchisee of complaints 
 15.30  regarding quality of service, equipment malfunction, billing 
 15.31  disputes, and other matters; must be specified. 
 15.32     (w) a provision requiring that (v) At least a toll-free or 
 15.33  collect telephone number for the reception of complaints must be 
 15.34  provided to the subscriber and that the franchisee shall 
 15.35  maintain a repair service capable of responding to subscriber 
 15.36  complaints or requests for service within 24 hours after receipt 
 16.1   of the complaint or request.  The A provision must also state 
 16.2   who will bear the costs included in making these repairs, 
 16.3   adjustments, or installations;. 
 16.4      (x) a provision granting (w) The franchising authority has 
 16.5   the right to terminate and cancel the franchise and the rights 
 16.6   and privileges of the franchise if the franchisee substantially 
 16.7   violates a provision of the franchise ordinance, attempts to 
 16.8   evade the provisions of the franchise ordinance, or practices 
 16.9   fraud or deceit upon the franchising authority.  The 
 16.10  municipality shall provide the franchisee with a written notice 
 16.11  of the cause for termination and its intention to terminate the 
 16.12  franchise and shall allow the franchisee a minimum of 30 days 
 16.13  after service of the notice in which to correct the violation.  
 16.14  The franchisee must be provided with an opportunity to be heard 
 16.15  at a public hearing before the governing body of the 
 16.16  municipality before the termination of the franchise;. 
 16.17     (y) a provision that (x) No cable communications company 
 16.18  system, notwithstanding any provision in a franchise, may 
 16.19  abandon a cable communications service or a portion of it 
 16.20  without having given three months prior written notice to the 
 16.21  franchising authority.  No cable communications company system 
 16.22  may abandon a cable communications service or a portion of it 
 16.23  without compensating the franchising authority for damages 
 16.24  resulting to it from the abandonment;. 
 16.25     (z) a provision requiring that (y) Upon termination or 
 16.26  forfeiture of a franchise, unless otherwise required by 
 16.27  applicable law, the franchisee shall remove its cable, wires, 
 16.28  and appliances from the streets, alleys, and other public places 
 16.29  within the franchise area if the franchising authority so 
 16.30  requests, and.  A procedure to be followed in the event the 
 16.31  franchisee fails to remove its cable, wires, and appliances from 
 16.32  the streets, alleys, and other public places within the 
 16.33  franchise area; must be specified. 
 16.34     (aa) a provision that (z) When a franchise or cable system 
 16.35  is offered for sale to be transferred or sold, the franchising 
 16.36  authority shall have has the right to purchase the system;. 
 17.1      (bb) a provision establishing (aa) The minimum number of 
 17.2   access channels that the franchisee shall make available must be 
 17.3   specified.  This provision must require that the franchisee 
 17.4   shall provide to each of its subscribers who receive some or all 
 17.5   of the services offered on the system, reception on at least one 
 17.6   specially designated access channel.  The specially designated 
 17.7   access channel may be used by local educational authorities and 
 17.8   local government on a first-come, first-served, 
 17.9   nondiscriminatory basis.  During those hours that the specially 
 17.10  designated access channel is not being used by the local 
 17.11  educational authorities or local government, the franchisee 
 17.12  shall lease time to commercial or noncommercial users on a 
 17.13  first-come, first-served, nondiscriminatory basis if the demand 
 17.14  for that time arises.  The franchisee may also use this 
 17.15  specially designated access channel for local origination during 
 17.16  those hours when the channel is not in use by local educational 
 17.17  authorities, local government, or commercial or noncommercial 
 17.18  users who have leased time.  As the municipality deems 
 17.19  appropriate, the provision may require the franchisee to provide 
 17.20  separate public access channels available for use by the general 
 17.21  public on a first-come, first-served, nondiscriminatory basis; 
 17.22  local educational access channels; local governmental access 
 17.23  channels; and channels available for lease on a first-come, 
 17.24  first-served, nondiscriminatory basis by commercial and 
 17.25  noncommercial users.  The provision must require that whenever 
 17.26  the specially designated access channel required by this 
 17.27  paragraph is in use during 80 percent of the weekdays, Monday 
 17.28  through Friday, for 80 percent of the time during a consecutive 
 17.29  three-hour period for six weeks running, and there is a demand 
 17.30  for use of an additional channel for the same purpose, the 
 17.31  franchisee has six months in which to provide a new, specially 
 17.32  designated access channel for the same purpose; provided that 
 17.33  the provision of the additional channel or channels does not 
 17.34  require the cable system to install converters.  The VHF 
 17.35  spectrum must be used for the specially designated access 
 17.36  channel required in this paragraph.  The provision must also 
 18.1   require that the franchisee shall establish rules for the 
 18.2   administration of the specially designated access channel unless 
 18.3   such channel is administered by the municipality.  
 18.4   Franchisees providing only alarm services or only data 
 18.5   transmission services for computer-operated functions do not 
 18.6   need to provide access channel reception to alarm and data 
 18.7   service subscribers. 
 18.8      (bb) The minimum equipment that the franchisee shall make 
 18.9   available for public use must be specified.  The franchisee 
 18.10  shall make readily available for public use at least the minimal 
 18.11  equipment necessary for the production of programming and 
 18.12  playback of prerecorded programs for the access channels.  Upon 
 18.13  request, the franchisee, at minimum, shall also make readily 
 18.14  available the minimum equipment necessary to make it possible to 
 18.15  record programs at remote locations with battery-operated 
 18.16  portable equipment.  
 18.17     (cc) A franchise in the metropolitan area, as defined in 
 18.18  section 473.121, must designate the standard VHF channel 6 for 
 18.19  uniform regional channel usage as required in section 238.43. 
 18.20     Sec. 9.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.11, 
 18.21  subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
 18.22     Subd. 2. [ACCESS CHANNEL.] No cable communications 
 18.23  company system may prohibit or limit a program or class or type 
 18.24  of program presented over a leased channel or a channel made 
 18.25  available for public access, governmental or educational 
 18.26  purposes.  Neither the person operating a cable communications 
 18.27  company system nor the officers, directors, or employees of the 
 18.28  cable communications system is liable for any penalties or 
 18.29  damages arising from programming content not originating from or 
 18.30  produced by the cable communications company system and shown on 
 18.31  any public access channel, education access channel, government 
 18.32  access channel, leased access channel, or regional channel. 
 18.33     Sec. 10.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.22, 
 18.34  subdivision 13, is amended to read: 
 18.35     Subd. 13.  [PROPERTY OWNER.] "Property owner" means any 
 18.36  person with a recorded interest in a multiple dwelling complex, 
 19.1   or person known to the person operating a cable communications 
 19.2   company system to be an owner, or the authorized agent of the 
 19.3   person.  
 19.4      Sec. 11.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.23, is 
 19.5   amended to read: 
 19.6      238.23 [ACCESS REQUIRED.] 
 19.7      Subdivision 1.  [PROVISION OF ACCESS.] A property owner or 
 19.8   other person controlling access shall provide a cable 
 19.9   communications company system access to the property owner's 
 19.10  multiple dwelling complex.  The access provided must be 
 19.11  perpetual and freely transferable by one person operating a 
 19.12  cable communications company system to another.  A cable 
 19.13  communications company system granted access, and its successors 
 19.14  in interest, must fully comply with sections 238.22 to 238.27.  
 19.15     Subd. 2.  [RESIDENT'S RIGHTS.] The intent of sections 
 19.16  238.22 to 238.27 is to give residents the freedom to choose 
 19.17  among competing cable communications services and nothing in 
 19.18  sections 238.22 to 238.27 shall be interpreted to require 
 19.19  requires residents to hook up or subscribe to any services 
 19.20  offered by any cable communications company system or 
 19.21  alternative provider of cable communications services. 
 19.22     Sec. 12.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.24, 
 19.23  subdivision 3, is amended to read: 
 19.24     Subd. 3.  [INSTALLATION; BOND.] The facilities must be 
 19.25  installed in an expeditious and workmanlike manner, must comply 
 19.26  with applicable codes, and must be installed parallel to utility 
 19.27  lines when economically feasible.  A property owner may require 
 19.28  a person operating a cable communications company system to post 
 19.29  a bond or equivalent security in an amount not exceeding the 
 19.30  estimated cost of installation of the cable communications 
 19.31  facilities on the premises.  Any bond filed by a cable 
 19.32  communications company system with a municipality which that 
 19.33  would provide coverage to the property owner as provided under 
 19.34  this subdivision shall be considered to fulfill fulfills the 
 19.35  requirements of this subdivision.  
 19.36     Sec. 13.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.24, 
 20.1   subdivision 4, is amended to read: 
 20.2      Subd. 4.  [INDEMNIFY FOR DAMAGE.] A person operating a 
 20.3   cable communications company system shall indemnify a property 
 20.4   owner for damage caused by the company in the installation, 
 20.5   operation, maintenance, or removal of its facilities.  
 20.6      Sec. 14.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.24, 
 20.7   subdivision 6, is amended to read: 
 20.8      Subd. 6.  [MASTER ANTENNA TELEVISION SYSTEM.] Nothing in 
 20.9   sections 238.22 to 238.27 precludes a property owner from 
 20.10  entering into an agreement for use of a master antenna 
 20.11  television system by a person operating a cable communications 
 20.12  company system or other television communications service.  
 20.13     Sec. 15.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.24, 
 20.14  subdivision 9, is amended to read: 
 20.15     Subd. 9.  [NOT RETROACTIVE.] Nothing in sections 238.22 to 
 20.16  238.27 affects the validity of an agreement effective before 
 20.17  June 15, 1983 between a property owner, a person operating a 
 20.18  cable communications company system, or any other person 
 20.19  providing cable communications services on or within the 
 20.20  premises of the property owner.  
 20.21     Sec. 16.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.24, 
 20.22  subdivision 10, is amended to read: 
 20.23     Subd. 10.  [CHANNEL CAPACITY.] (a) A property owner must 
 20.24  provide access by to a franchised person providing a cable 
 20.25  communications company system, as required under section 238.23, 
 20.26  only if that cable company installs equipment with channel 
 20.27  capacity sufficient to provide access to other providers of 
 20.28  television programming or cable communications services so that 
 20.29  residents or association members have a choice of alternative 
 20.30  providers of those services.  If the equipment is installed, the 
 20.31  cable communications company system shall allow alternative 
 20.32  providers to use the equipment.  If some of the residents or 
 20.33  association members choose to subscribe to the services of an 
 20.34  alternative provider, the cable company that installed the 
 20.35  equipment shall must be reimbursed by the other providers for 
 20.36  the cost of equipment and installation on the property on a pro 
 21.1   rata basis which that reflects the number of subscribers of each 
 21.2   provider on that property to the total number of subscribers on 
 21.3   that property.  In determining the pro rata amount of 
 21.4   reimbursement by any alternative provider, the cost of equipment 
 21.5   and installation shall must be reduced to the extent of 
 21.6   cumulative depreciation of that equipment at the time the 
 21.7   alternative provider begins providing service.  
 21.8      (b) If equipment is already installed as of June 15, 1983, 
 21.9   with channel capacity sufficient to allow access to alternative 
 21.10  providers, the access and pro rata reimbursement provisions of 
 21.11  paragraph (a) apply.  
 21.12     Sec. 17.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.242, 
 21.13  subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
 21.14     Subdivision 1.  [PROVIDING ALTERNATIVE SERVICE.] Other 
 21.15  providers of television programming or cable communications 
 21.16  services shall notify the person operating a cable 
 21.17  communications company system when a resident or association 
 21.18  member occupying a dwelling unit in a multiple dwelling complex 
 21.19  requests the services provided for by this section or section 
 21.20  238.241.  After reaching agreement with the alternative service 
 21.21  provider for reimbursement to be paid for use of the equipment, 
 21.22  the cable communications company system shall make available the 
 21.23  equipment necessary to provide the alternative service without 
 21.24  unreasonable delay.  
 21.25     Sec. 18.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.242, 
 21.26  subdivision 3, is amended to read: 
 21.27     Subd. 3.  [FINANCIAL RECORDS MADE AVAILABLE.] The person 
 21.28  operating a cable communications company system, upon written 
 21.29  request, shall make available to the alternative provider 
 21.30  financial records supporting the reimbursement cost requested.  
 21.31     Sec. 19.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.25, 
 21.32  subdivision 5, is amended to read: 
 21.33     Subd. 5.  [SERVICE OF PETITION.] The petition must be 
 21.34  served upon all persons named in the petition as property owners 
 21.35  in the same manner as a summons in a civil action; except that, 
 21.36  service may be made upon a property owner by three weeks' 
 22.1   published notice if the person operating a cable communications 
 22.2   company system, its or the person's agent or attorney, files an 
 22.3   affidavit stating on belief that the property owner is not a 
 22.4   resident of the state and that the company has mailed a copy of 
 22.5   the notice to the property owner at the property owner's place 
 22.6   of residence, or that after diligent inquiry the property 
 22.7   owner's place of residence cannot be ascertained by the 
 22.8   company.  If the state is a property owner, the notice must be 
 22.9   served upon the attorney general.  Any property owner not served 
 22.10  as provided under this paragraph is not bound by the proceeding 
 22.11  unless the property owner voluntarily appears therein in the 
 22.12  proceeding.  
 22.13     Sec. 20.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.25, 
 22.14  subdivision 10, is amended to read: 
 22.15     Subd. 10.  [FINAL CERTIFICATE.] Upon completion of the 
 22.16  proceedings, the attorney for the person operating the cable 
 22.17  communications company system shall make a certificate 
 22.18  describing the access acquired and the purpose or purposes for 
 22.19  which acquired, and reciting the fact of final payment of all 
 22.20  awards or judgments in relation thereto.  The certificate must 
 22.21  be filed with the court administrator and a certified copy 
 22.22  thereof filed for record with the county recorder.  The record 
 22.23  is notice to all parties of the access to the premises described 
 22.24  in the petition.  
 22.25     Sec. 21.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.35, 
 22.26  subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
 22.27     Subdivision 1.  [LEGISLATIVE FINDINGS.] There is a 
 22.28  long-standing legislative policy in the state of Minnesota to 
 22.29  provide for the dedication or other provision of easements and 
 22.30  public rights-of-way required by public utilities and cable 
 22.31  communications companies systems.  Except for applicable 
 22.32  governmental rules, these easements do not include any 
 22.33  limitation on the type, number, or size of cables or related 
 22.34  cable communication system components.  There is a public 
 22.35  understanding and acceptance of the need of public utilities and 
 22.36  cable communications companies systems to have the ability to 
 23.1   use existing utility easements and public rights-of-way in order 
 23.2   to provide new and improved cable communications services made 
 23.3   possible by technological developments and to make changes to 
 23.4   the cables or related cable communication systems components. 
 23.5   Changing technology has caused and will continue to cause over 
 23.6   time the development of new cable communications services 
 23.7   requiring changing uses of existing utility easements and public 
 23.8   rights-of-way.  Cable communications companies systems have a 
 23.9   need to use existing utility easements and public rights-of-way 
 23.10  in order to deliver their services to the public.  The addition 
 23.11  of cable communications system components does not constitute an 
 23.12  unanticipated or added burden on the real estate subject to the 
 23.13  easements or public rights-of-way.  
 23.14     Sec. 22.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.35, 
 23.15  subdivision 4, is amended to read: 
 23.16     Subd. 4.  [RESTRICTIONS ON USE.] (a) As a condition of 
 23.17  using any utility easement, a cable communications company shall 
 23.18  be system is subject to any burdens, duties, or obligations 
 23.19  specified in the easement of the grantee of the easement.  
 23.20     (b) A cable communications company shall restore the real 
 23.21  estate, and any landscaping or improvements thereon, to the 
 23.22  condition they were in prior to entry within 30 days of 
 23.23  completing the installation of the cables and related cable 
 23.24  communications system components upon that real estate and to 
 23.25  make changes to the cables or related cable communication 
 23.26  systems components.  Changing technology has caused and will 
 23.27  continue to cause over time the development of new cable 
 23.28  communications services requiring changing uses of existing 
 23.29  utility easements.  Restoration which cannot be completed during 
 23.30  the winter months must be accomplished as promptly as weather 
 23.31  conditions permit system seeking to use public rights-of-way is 
 23.32  subject to the rights and obligations of sections 237.162 and 
 23.33  237.163, and any local right-of-way ordinance adopted under 
 23.34  those statutes.  
 23.35     Sec. 23.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.36, 
 23.36  subdivision 2, is amended to read: 
 24.2   EQUIPMENT.] "Cable communications company's system's equipment" 
 24.3   means aerial wires, cables, amplifiers, associated power supply 
 24.4   equipment, and other transmission apparatus necessary for the 
 24.5   proper operation of the cable communications system in a 
 24.6   franchised area. 
 24.7      Sec. 24.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.39, is 
 24.8   amended to read: 
 24.9      238.39 [LEGAL AUTHORITY.] 
 24.10     Every pole, duct, and conduit agreement must contain a 
 24.11  provision that the cable communications company system shall 
 24.12  submit to the public utility company evidence of the cable 
 24.13  communications company's system's lawful authority to place, 
 24.14  maintain, and operate its facilities within public streets, 
 24.15  highways, and other thoroughfares and shall secure the legally 
 24.16  necessary permits and consents from federal, state, county, and 
 24.17  municipal authorities to construct, maintain, and operate 
 24.18  facilities at the locations of poles or conduit systems of the 
 24.19  public utility company which that it uses.  The parties to the 
 24.20  agreement shall at all times observe and comply with, and the 
 24.21  provisions of a pole, duct, and conduit agreement are subject 
 24.22  to, the laws, ordinances, and rules which that in any manner 
 24.23  affect the rights and obligations of the parties to the 
 24.24  agreement, so long as the laws, ordinances, or rules remain in 
 24.25  effect. 
 24.26     Sec. 25.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.40, is 
 24.27  amended to read: 
 24.29     (a) Every pole, duct, and conduit agreement must contain a 
 24.30  provision that the cable communications company system shall 
 24.31  defend, indemnify, protect, and save harmless the public utility 
 24.32  from and against any and all claims and demands for damages to 
 24.33  property and injury or death to persons, including payments made 
 24.34  under any worker's compensation law or under any plan for 
 24.35  employees' disability and death benefits, which may arise out of 
 24.36  or be caused: 
 25.1      (1) by the erection, maintenance, presence, use, or removal 
 25.2   of the cable communications company's system's cable, equipment, 
 25.3   and facilities or by the proximity of the cables, equipment, and 
 25.4   facilities of the parties to the agreement,; or 
 25.5      (2) by any act of the cable communications company system 
 25.6   on or in the vicinity of the public utility company's poles and 
 25.7   conduit system, in the performance of the agreement.  Nothing 
 25.8   contained in this section relieves the public utility company 
 25.9   from liability for the negligence of the public utility company 
 25.10  or anyone acting under its direction and control.  
 25.11     (b) The cable communications company system shall also 
 25.12  indemnify, protect, and save harmless the public utility: 
 25.13     (1) from any and all claims and demands which that arise 
 25.14  directly or indirectly from the operation of the cable 
 25.15  communications company's system's facilities including taxes, 
 25.16  special charges by others, claims, and demands (i) for damages 
 25.17  or loss for infringement of copyright, (ii) for libel and 
 25.18  slander, (iii) for unauthorized use of television broadcast 
 25.19  programs, and (iv) for unauthorized use of other program 
 25.20  material,; and 
 25.21     (2) from and against all claims and demands for 
 25.22  infringement of patents with respect to the manufacture, use, 
 25.23  and operation of the cable communications equipment in 
 25.24  combination with the public utility company's poles, conduit 
 25.25  system, or otherwise. 
 25.26     (c) Nothing contained in this section relieves the public 
 25.27  utility company from liability for the negligence of the public 
 25.28  utility company or anyone acting under its direction and control.
 25.29     Sec. 26.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 238.43, 
 25.30  subdivision 1, is amended to read: 
 25.32  ENTITY.] For the purposes of this section "Regional channel 
 25.33  entity" or "entity" means an independent, nonprofit corporation 
 25.34  to govern the operation of the regional channel. 
 25.35     Sec. 27.  [REVISOR'S INSTRUCTIONS.] 
 25.36     (a) The revisor of statutes shall delete the words "shall 
 26.1   mean" and insert "means" where found in Minnesota Statutes, 
 26.2   section 238.02. 
 26.3      (b) The revisor of statutes shall change the term "cable 
 26.4   communications company" to "cable communications system" where 
 26.5   found in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 238. 
 26.6      (c) In Minnesota Statutes, section 238.18, subdivision 1, 
 26.7   the revisor of statutes shall delete paragraph (a) and renumber 
 26.8   paragraph (b) as section 238.02, subdivision 1b, and renumber 
 26.9   paragraph (c) as section 238.02, subdivision 34. 
 26.10     (d) In Minnesota Statutes, section 238.22, the revisor of 
 26.11  statutes shall renumber subdivision 6 as section 238.02, 
 26.12  subdivision 1a; subdivision 7 as section 238.02, subdivision 1c; 
 26.13  subdivision 8 as section 238.02, subdivision 1d; subdivision 10 
 26.14  as section 238.02, subdivision 21a; subdivision 11 as section 
 26.15  238.02, subdivision 28a; subdivision 12 as section 238.02, 
 26.16  subdivision 29a; subdivision 13 as section 238.02, subdivision 
 26.17  31a; and subdivision 14 as section 238.02, subdivision 31d. 
 26.18     (e) In Minnesota Statutes, section 238.36, the revisor of 
 26.19  statutes shall renumber subdivision 2 as section 238.02, 
 26.20  subdivision 3a; subdivision 3 as section 238.02, subdivision 
 26.21  20a; and subdivision 4 as section 238.02, subdivision 31b. 
 26.22     (f) The revisor of statutes shall renumber Minnesota 
 26.23  Statutes, section 238.43, subdivision 1, as section 238.02, 
 26.24  subdivision 31c. 
 26.25     Sec. 28.  [REPEALER.] 
 26.26     (a) Minnesota Statutes 2002, sections 238.01; 238.02, 
 26.27  subdivisions 2, 17, 18, 19, and 25; 238.082; 238.083, 
 26.28  subdivisions 3 and 5; 238.084, subdivisions 2, 3, and 5; 238.12, 
 26.29  subdivision 1a; 238.15; 238.35, subdivisions 2 and 3; and 
 26.30  238.36, subdivision 1, are repealed. 
 26.31     (b) Minnesota Rules, parts 7810.0100, subparts 16, 17, 18, 
 26.32  30, 32, 33, and 39; 7810.0700; 7810.3400; 7810.3500; 7810.3600; 
 26.33  7810.3700; 7810.3800; 7810.4200; 7810.4400; 7810.4500; 
 26.34  7810.4600; 7810.4700; 7810.4800; 7810.5600; 7810.6900; 
 26.35  7810.8760; 7815.0100; 7815.0200; 7815.0300; 7815.0400; 
 26.36  7815.0500; and 7815.0600, are repealed. 
 27.1                              ARTICLE 3 
 27.2                         INTEREST ON DEPOSITS 
 27.3      Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 237.06, is 
 27.4   amended to read: 
 27.6      It shall be the duty of every telephone company to furnish 
 27.7   reasonably adequate service and facilities for the accommodation 
 27.8   of the public, and its rates, tolls, and charges shall be fair 
 27.9   and reasonable for the intrastate use thereof.  All unreasonable 
 27.10  rates, tolls, and charges are hereby declared to be unlawful.  
 27.11  Any telephone company organized after January 1, 1949, may 
 27.12  include in its charges a reasonable deposit fee not exceeding 
 27.13  $50 for facilities furnished.  
 27.14     Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 2002, section 325E.02, is 
 27.15  amended to read: 
 27.16     325E.02 [CUSTOMER DEPOSITS.] 
 27.17     Any customer deposit required before commencement of 
 27.18  service by a privately or publicly owned water, gas, telephone, 
 27.19  cable television, electric light, heat, or power company shall 
 27.20  be subject to the following: 
 27.21     (a) Upon termination of service with all bills paid, the 
 27.22  deposit shall be returned to the customer within 45 days, less 
 27.23  any deductions made in accordance with paragraph (c).  
 27.24     (b) Interest shall be paid on deposits in excess of $20 at 
 27.25  the rate of not less than three percent per year.  The rate of 
 27.26  interest must be set annually and be equal to the weekly average 
 27.27  yield of one-year United States Treasury securities adjusted for 
 27.28  constant maturity for the last full week in November.  The 
 27.29  interest rate must be rounded to the nearest tenth of one 
 27.30  percent.  By December 15 of each year, the commissioner of 
 27.31  commerce shall announce the rate of interest that must be paid 
 27.32  on all deposits held during all or part of the subsequent year.  
 27.33  The company may, at its option, pay the interest at intervals it 
 27.34  chooses but at least annually, by direct payment, or as a credit 
 27.35  on bills.  
 27.36     (c) At the time the deposit is made the company shall 
 28.1   furnish the customer with a written receipt specifying the 
 28.2   conditions, if any, the deposit will be diminished upon return.  
 28.3      (d) Advance payments or prepayments shall not be construed 
 28.4   as being a deposit.  
 28.5      Sec. 3.  [RULES OR ORDERS SUPERSEDED.] 
 28.6      The interest rate set in section 2 supersedes any rate set 
 28.7   in rule or by administrative order. 
 28.8      Sec. 4.  [EFFECTIVE DATE.] 
 28.9      Section 2 applies to interest paid on deposits held as of 
 28.10  January 1, 2005.