Maria Browne advises and advocates on behalf of telecommunications companies before courts, the FCC, state public service commissions, and local regulatory bodies in matters related to broadband and small cell infrastructure deployment. She also advises companies concerning compliance with FCC rules (including parts 2, 5, 15, 76 and 79) as well as laws governing accessibility of communications and video programming to persons with disabilities.
Maria has appeared before state regulatory commissions and courts in California, Connecticut, Florida, Indiana, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington, D.C.
Maria's current and past clients include Altice, Amazon, Armstrong, BriarTek, Charter, Comcast, Cox, Mediacom, MetroCast, and Microsoft.
Pole Attachments and Infrastructure Deployment
Advising communications network providers regarding federal and state laws governing deployment of facilities on existing utility infrastructure
Advising wired and wireless communications networks providers concerning laws and regulations governing pole attachment agreements with investor owned utilities, cooperatively and municipally owned power companies, and telephone companies; review and analyze rates, terms and conditions of attachment; represent clients before the FCC and state public service commissions in regulatory matters and disputes concerning pole attachment rates, terms and conditions. (Ongoing)
Negotiates infrastructure agreements
Negotiate rates, terms, and conditions of pole attachment agreements, franchises, right-of-way agreements, IRUs, and conduit leases on behalf of clients with various utilities and municipalities. (Ongoing)
MDU access rights for broadband clients
Representing cable operators in disputes with building owners concerning the rates, terms and conditions of access to building residents and the ownership of wiring and equipment and related right of way matters. (Ongoing) Read more
Zayo Group LLC et al. v. Mayor and City Council Of Baltimore et al.
Represent seven broadband and telecommunications providers in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland in a case related to a multi-million dollar increase in annual conduit fees assessed by the City of Baltimore. (Ongoing)
CPS Energy pole attachment workshop
Represent Conterra Broadband Services in a pole attachment workshop settings rates, terms and conditions of attachment to CPS poles in Texas. (Ongoing)
Comcast of Indianapolis, L.P. v. Duke Energy Indiana, Inc.
Represented Comcast before the FCC and the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana in a case related to Duke’s refusal to process pole attachment applications in connection with federal court litigation concerning make-ready work. (2016)
Cox Communications Hampton Roads, LLC v. Dominion Virginia Power
Represented Cox before the FCC in case related to costs associated with Cox’s forced relocation of its facilities due to Dominion’s modification of existing poles. (2015)
Cox Communications Las Vegas, Inc. v. NV Energy, Inc.
Represented Cox before the Federal Communications Commission in a case related to NVE’s imposition of Grade B construction standards in a manner that prevents Cox from deploying network until after existing Grade C poles are upgraded. (2015)
CL&P pole attachment rate case
Represented New England Cable Television Association in a case before the Connecticut Public Utility Regulatory Authority concerning CL&P’s pole attachment rental rates which resulted in CL&P transitioning from its antiquated legacy formula to the more favorable FCC formula. (2014)
Comcast v. NOVEC
Represented Comcast before the Virginia State Corporation Commission in case of first impression under amended state law requiring cooperative pole owner rents to be cost based and reasonable. (2014)
Gulf Power Company v. Comcast of the South, Inc.
Defended Comcast against Gulf Power claims relating to back rent owed based upon pole attachment audit. (2014)
Fibertech Networks v. Baltimore Gas and Electric Company
Represented Fibertech Networks before the Federal Communications Commission in a case challenging BGE’s imposition of Grade B construction standards in a manner that prevented Fibertech Networks from deploying network until after existing Grade C poles were upgraded. (2013)
Fibertech Networks v. Verizon New England and the Narragansett Electric Company d/b/a National Grid
Represented Fibertech Networks in matter related to pole owners’ failure to provide timely access to poles and particularly addressing pole attachment make-ready timeframes and temporary construction techniques. (2012)
New Hampshire Public Utility Commission proceeding for Time Warner Cable, Inc.
Represented cable operator client in dispute before the PUC concerning the appropriate amount of Public Service Company of New Hampshire pole attachment rental rates. (2012)
New Jersey Board of Public Utilities proceeding for Fibertech Networks
Represented Fibertech Networks in case against Verizon concerning Verizon charges for make-ready work in connection with pole attachments. (2012)
Advising clients regarding federal and state laws requiring accessible communications, information technology and video programming
Consulting clients concerning federal and state laws requiring communications, information technology, websites, and video programming to be accessible to persons with disabilities, including the 21st Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, state disabilities laws, and FCC rules, including rules relating to advanced communications services, closed captioning and video description. (Ongoing)
Assisting entities in filing Accessibility Compliance Certifications and establishing recordkeeping processes
Advising clients concerning the CVAA and FCC rules requiring communications providers to make services and equipment accessibility to persons with disabilities, to keep records concerning efforts to comply with rules, and annual compliance certification to the FCC. (Ongoing)
Various cable companies
Filed comments in FCC CG Docket No. 05-231, In the Matter of Closed Captioning of Video Programming, on behalf of Charter, Cablevision, Mediacom, Suddenlink and Time Warner Cable. (2014)
Regulatory Compliance and Advocacy
FCC regulatory compliance for broadband and wireless clients
Representing broadband clients in disputes before the FCC and state public service commissions. Provide advice to clients concerning compliance with FCC regulatory requirements including pole attachment regulations, closed captioning, commercial leased access, access to multiple dwelling units, digital transition issues, must carry, PEG and inside wiring. (Ongoing)
Representing clients in negotiations with state and local regulators
Reviewing and negotiating state and local franchise agreements, infrastructure deployment terms, and ROW usage terms and conditions. Advising clients concerning rights to occupy public ROW and private easements, and limitations on local regulatory authority. (Ongoing)
Various cable companies and telecommunications service providers
Assist clients in filing certifications to FCC concerning FCC record keeping requirements governing telecommunications and advanced communications service accessibility. (Ongoing)
Representing clients in obtaining experimental licenses and special temporary authority to operate Part 15 devices. (Ongoing)