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                           Before the
                Federal Communications Commission
                     Washington, D.C. 20554

In the Matter of                )
                                )
Dixie Cablevision, Inc.         )    File No. EB-02-TS-378
                                )
Operator of Cable System in:    )
                                )    
Oktibbeha County, Mississippi   )
                                )
Request for Waiver of Section 11.11(a) of the     )    
Commission's Rules              )    
                                        
                              ORDER 

Adopted:  April 28, 2003                Released:  May 2, 2003

By the Chief, Technical  and Public Safety Division,  Enforcement 
Bureau:

1.        In  this  Order,  we  grant  Dixie  Cablevision,   Inc. 
  (``Dixie  Cablevision'')   a  temporary,  36-month  waiver   of 
  Section 11.11(a) of the Commission's Rules (``Rules'') for  the 
  above-captioned  cable  television  system.   Section  11.11(a) 
  requires  cable systems  serving fewer  than 5,000  subscribers 
  from  a headend  to  either provide  national  level  Emergency 
  Alert System (``EAS'')  messages on all programmed channels  or 
  install EAS equipment  and provide a video interrupt and  audio 
  alert  on all  programmed  channels  and EAS  audio  and  video 
  messages  on at  least one  programmed  channel by  October  1, 
  2002.1

2.        The Cable Act of 1992  added new Section 624(g) to  the 
  Communications  Act  of 1934  (``Act''),  which  requires  that 
  cable  systems be  capable of  providing  EAS alerts  to  their 
  subscribers.2  In 1994, the Commission adopted rules  requiring 
  cable systems to participate in EAS.3  In 1997, the  Commission 
  amended the  EAS rules  to provide financial  relief for  small 
  cable systems.4  The Commission declined to exempt small  cable 
  systems  from the  EAS requirements,  concluding that  such  an 
  exemption would be  inconsistent with the statutory mandate  of 
  Section  624(g).5    However,  the   Commission  extended   the 
  deadline   for  cable   systems  serving   fewer  than   10,000 
  subscribers to  begin complying with the  EAS rules to  October 
  1, 2002,  and provided cable systems  serving fewer than  5,000 
  subscribers the option  of either providing national level  EAS 
  messages  on   all  programmed  channels   or  installing   EAS 
  equipment and  providing a video interrupt  and audio alert  on 
  all programmed channels and EAS audio and video messages on  at 
  least  one programmed  channel.6  In  addition, the  Commission 
  stated that  it would grant waivers of  the EAS rules to  small 
  cable  systems  on  a case-by-case  basis  upon  a  showing  of 
  financial  hardship.7   The Commission  indicated  that  waiver 
  requests must contain at least the following information:   (1) 
  justification for the waiver, with reference to the  particular 
  rule sections  for which  a waiver is  sought; (2)  information 
  about the financial status of the requesting entity, such as  a 
  balance sheet and  income statement for the two previous  years 
  (audited, if possible);  (3) the number of other entities  that 
  serve the  requesting entity's coverage area  and that have  or 
  are expected to  install EAS equipment; and (4) the  likelihood 
  (such  as proximity  or frequency)  of hazardous  risks to  the 
  requesting entity's audience.8

3.        Dixie Cablevision filed a request for a temporary,  36-
  month  waiver  of Section  11.11(a)  for  the  captioned  cable 
  system on  August 1, 2002.  In  support of its waiver  request, 
  Dixie  Cablevision states  that this  is a  small, rural  cable 
  system which  serves approximately 300  subscribers.  Based  on 
  price  quotes provided  by EAS  equipment manufacturers,  Dixie 
  Cablevision estimates that it would cost approximately  $10,000 
  to  install EAS  equipment at  the system.   Dixie  Cablevision 
  asserts  that this  cost will  impose a  substantial  financial 
  hardship on  it and provides financial  data for 2000 and  2001 
  in support of  this assertion.  In addition, Dixie  Cablevision 
  submits that subscribers will continue to have ready access  to 
  national  EAS information  from  other sources,  including  its 
  cable systems.   In this regard,  Dixie Cablevision notes  that 
  its subscribers currently have access to national EAS  messages 
  on approximately 28  percent of all programmed channels.  Dixie 
  Cablevision further submits  that subscribers will have  access 
  to EAS information through over-the-air reception of  broadcast 
  television and radio stations.    

4.        Based upon our review of  the financial data and  other 
  information submitted by Dixie Cablevision, we conclude that  a 
  temporary  36-month   waiver  of  Section   11.11(a)  for   the 
  captioned cable system  is warranted.9  In particular, we  find 
  that  the estimated  $10,000 cost  of  EAS equipment  for  this 
  small cable system  could impose a financial hardship on  Dixie 
  Cablevision.

5.        We note that  the Commission recently  amended the  EAS 
  rules  to  permit  cable  systems  serving  fewer  than   5,000 
  subscribers  to   install  FCC-certified  decoder-only   units, 
  rather  than both  encoders  and  decoders, if  such  a  device 
  becomes  available.10    Based  on   comments  from   equipment 
  manufacturers, we  anticipate that such  a decoder-only  system 
  could  result  in  significant  cost  savings  to  small  cable 
  systems.11  

6.        Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED  that, pursuant to  Sections 
  0.111, 0.204(b)  and 0.311 of  the Rules,12 Dixie  Cablevision, 
  Inc.  IS GRANTED  a waiver  of Section  11.11(a) of  the  Rules 
  until  October 1,  2005   for the  captioned  cable  television 
  system.

7.        IT IS  FURTHER  ORDERED that  Dixie  Cablevision,  Inc. 
  place a copy of this waiver in its system file.

8.        IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that  a copy of this Order  shall 
  be sent by  Certified Mail Return Receipt Requested to  counsel 
  for  Dixie Cablevision,  Inc., Christopher  C. Cinnamon,  Esq., 
  Cinnamon  Mueller,  307  North  Michigan  Avenue,  Suite  1020, 
  Chicago, Illinois 60601.  

                         FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
                         


                         Joseph P. Casey
                         Chief, Technical and Public Safety 
Division
                         Enforcement Bureau
_________________________

  1 47 C.F.R.  11.11(a).

  2 Cable Television  Consumer Protection and Competition Act  of 
1992, Pub. L. No. 102-385,  16(b), 106 Stat. 1460, 1490  (1992).  
Section 624(g) provides that  ``each cable operator shall  comply 
with such standards as the  Commission shall prescribe to  ensure 
that viewers of video programming  on cable systems are  afforded 
the same emergency  information as is  afforded by the  emergency 
broadcasting system pursuant to Commission regulations ....''  47 
U.S.C.  544(g).  

  3 Amendment  of Part 73, Subpart  G, of the Commission's  Rules 
Regarding the Emergency  Broadcast System, Report  and Order  and 
Further Notice of Proposed Rule Making, FO Docket Nos. 91-171/91-
301, 10  FCC  Rcd  1786  (1994)  (``First  Report  and  Order''), 
reconsideration granted in part, denied in part, 10 FCC Rcd 11494 
(1995).

  4 Amendment  of Part 73, Subpart  G, of the Commission's  Rules 
Regarding the  Emergency  Broadcast  System,  Second  Report  and 
Order, FO  Docket Nos.  91-171/91-301, 12  FCC Rcd  15503  (1997) 
(``Second Report and Order'').

  5 Id. at 15512-13.

  6 Id. at 15516-15518.

  7 Id. at 15513.

  8 Id. at 15513, n. 59.

  9 The  waiver will extend from  October 1, 2002, until  October 
1, 2005.    Additionally,  we  clarify that  the  waiver  we  are 
granting  also  encompasses  the   EAS  testing  and   monitoring 
requirements.  

  10 Amendment  of Part  11 of the  Commission's Rules  Regarding 
the Emergency Alert System,  EB Docket 01-66, FCC  02-64 at   71 
(released February 26, 2002).

  11 One manufacturer  estimated that an EAS decoder-only  system 
can reduce the cost by 64% over what a cable operator would spend 
for an encoder/decoder unit.  Id. at  70.

  12 47 C.F.R.  0.111, 0.204(b) and 0.311.