Cable TV|Broadcast Surcharge

Call to order 1-800-422-4848

Cable Public File

Our public file, as hosted by the FCC, can be accessed at  If you have a disability and need assistance accessing information within the public file, or have any other questions regarding the public file, please contact Dave Beier at or (618) 635-5000.

Closed Captioning

Closed captioning is a term describing several systems developed to display text on a television or video screen to provide additional or interpretive information to viewers who wish to access it. Closed captions typically display a transcription of the audio portion of a program as it occurs (either verbatim or in edited form), sometimes including non-speech elements.

For closed captions questions or assistance call us at
or email us at

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.

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?


As a voter, you can help change this by contacting your Congressman.  If you wish to complete the form below, Madison Communications will send a letter to your Congressman on your behalf to inform them that you would like to see broadcast carriage rules reformed. 

To view sample letters please click on the following link:  Broadcast Surcharge Letters to Washington


To learn more about the rising cost of cable TV service please visit or

United States Senator
The Honorable Tammy Duckworth
8 South Old State Capitol Plaza
Springfield, IL  62701
Phone - 217.528.6124


United States Senator
The Honorable Richard Durbin
525 South Eighth Street
Springfield, IL  62703
Phone - 217.528.6124


United States Congress
The Honorable John Shimkus
15 Professional Park Drive
Maryville, IL  62062
Phone - 618.288.7190


United States Congress
The Honorable Rodney Davis
15 Professional Park Drive
Maryville, IL  62062
Phone - 618.205.8660