Broadcast Surcharge

In 1992, the Federal government gave local television stations the unilateral decision to grant or deny permission for carriage of their television signal by cable and satellite providers. Broadcasters had the option of requiring operators like Madison to carry their stations for no monthly fee or negotiate a charge for doing so.  A recent trend is that local stations are charging ever increasing rates to cable and satellite providers for retransmitting their signals, despite the fact that their signals are being sent over the air, using free spectrum granted to them by the Federal government.  As a result, cable and satellite operators have no choice but to pass theses fees called Broadcast Surcharges on to the customer through their cable bills, increasing their overall monthly charges.  While this situation has resulted in the surcharge on customer bills, we pledge not to profit from that surcharge.  We will make sure we do not collect more from the surcharge than we pay to the owners of  broadcast TV stations.  As a voter, you can help change this.  By completing the form below, Madison Communications can send a letter to your Congressman on your behalf to inform them that you would like to see broadcast carriage rules reformed.  To view a sample letter, please click on the following link:  Letter to Washington


  • What is "Broadcast Surcharge?"

  • Why is there a charge appearing on my cable bill for "Broadcast Surcharge?"

  • Why is there a Broadcast Surcharge now?

  • Why can local stations charge for signal carriage?

  • Why are local stations treated differently than others?

  • Are all local broadcasters charging Madison?

Once we receive the completed form below, we will forward a letter on your behalf to your Congressman.  Thank you for your information.




Madison is a high speed Internet (Broadband), Phone, and Cable TV provider serving the Illinois communities of Staunton, Livingston, Williamson, New Douglas, Alhambra, Hamel, Worden, Prairietown, Dorsey, Holiday Shores, Mt. Olive, Benld, Sawyerville, Mt. Clare, Gillespie, and Bunker Hill. Madison Communications, INC. · Madison Telephone Company · Madison Network Systems, INC.® are registered service marks owned by and used under license from Schwartz Ventures Inc. Using these and other intellectual property such as logos, slogans, trade dress, and graphic symbols on packaging, products, or services requires express written permission from Schwartz Ventures Inc. © 2001 - 2011, Schwartz Ventures Inc., All Rights Reserved.