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Industry Fight Expected After Philadelphia Imposes New Rules On TV Dishes

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(File photo:  satellite dishes on row homes.)

(File photo: satellite dishes on row homes.)

Mike Dunn Mike Dunn
Mike Dunn is City Hall bureau chief for KYW Newsradio 1060. He covers...
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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Philadelphia City Council is bracing for a legal challenge after approving a bill that regulates the placement of new satellite dishes on the roofs of Philadelphia homes.

The vote was 17-0 as Council approved the bill, which among other things makes the satellite company responsible for painting a dish to match the roof if it is placed on the front of the home.

Councilman Darrell Clarke, the sponsor, has spent two years battling the dish industry on this.  He stresses that homeowners face no new costs and that existing dishes stay as they are.

“They are grandfathered in,” Clarke explained.  “We’re not asking them or the industry to remove those dishes and put them on the rear of the properties.  But on subsequent installations, we’re asking them to adhere to the guidelines established.”

The mayor is expected to sign the measure.  But the satellite television industry is unlikely to follow the guidelines.

The Satellite Broadcasting and Communications Association, representing both Dish Networks and Direct TV, says that only the FCC can regulate satellite dishes.  And Clarke acknowledges that a lawsuit against his bill is likely.

Reported by KYW City Hall bureau chief Mike Dunn

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