Your Elected Officials
you care about bringing media access to your community, the most
important thing you can do to help is also the easiest: contact
your elected officials! Cable franchises are essentially real estate
contracts negotiated between the cable company and a municipality,
so the bottom line responsibility for getting a good deal rests
with public officials.
make this happen!
Speak out at Troy City Council meetings.
Send letters to local elected officials.
Email and/or call the Mayor and Troy City Council.
Tell your friends about the effort to organize
access. (Flyer download)
out at Troy City Council meetings,
first Thursday of every month at 7:00 PM in the Council Chambers
on the second floor of City Hall.
few tips when addressing the council
1. Be nice! The elected officials responsible for negotiating the
cable contract with Time Warner have a lot of important issues confronting
them, of which this is just one. The last thing you want to do is
anger them when they're already being asked to put a significant
amount of their time and energy toward understanding the complex
and ever-changing world of cable franchise negotiations.
2. Keep it simple!
Remind your elected officials that the cable contract is a basically
real estate deal that outlines what citizens get for letting the
cable company use public property (streets, sidewalks and other
rights-of-way). They're negotiating on your behalf--tell them you
want them to get the best deal possible!
3. Be brief!
Tell your representatives that you just want what hundreds of other
municipalities already have--a community media center with the resources
necessary to take full advantage of the public, educational and
government access channels on cable. Plus an I-Net (Institutional
Network) that connects city government, schools, and other municipal
buildings and helps save taxpayer money.
4. Be realistic!
You don't have to come across like a rocket scientist to speak out
effectively. There's a fortune at stake in every cable franchise
so, as with any complex negotiation, the city should employ expert
help to get the best possible deal. All you need to do is convince
your elected officials to take this issue seriously and not cave
in to the cable company.
5. Be creative!
What aspects of public access mean the most to you? Church services
for shut-ins? Televised government meetings? Educational programming?
Local sports? Music programming? Arts and culture? Local history?
Public safety information? Activities for young and senior citizens?
Media literacy training? A place to learn computer skills? You get
the idea--public access television can open up a new world of possibilities
for the public, and help expose the great things about life in this
6. Be persistent!
Don't let this opportunity slip away. The cable company knows millions,
even billions, of dollars in revenue will flow from this contract--they
will fight long and hard to keep as much of it as possible. The
cable franchise defines how citizens will benefit. Elected officials
have to be reminded of their responsibility to negotiate the best
possible contract, even if doing so is hard work.
7. Be grateful!
Thank them for their time, their attention, for allowing you to
speak--and for their support of public access community television.
Send letters to local elected officials. (very important)
your own support letters to local elected officials. If you don't
have time to write your own, then here are sample letters to send
to Troy City Council President Marjorie Mahar DerGurahian,
Troy Mayor Harry Tutunjian and State Senator Joseph
Bruno. Print them, sign your name and address, and mail.
Keep sending letters. The stamp is a symbol of how vaulable your
from a PDF file (download) quick and easy
from your web browser, don't forget to hit your back
button to return
Email and/or call the Mayor
and Troy City Council.
them what you think.
Mayor and all of Troy City Council at once with this link
your friends about the effort to organize access. (Flyer)
the community access television flyer.(pdf)
flyer to people you know.
flyer in a public space.