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(a) A franchise may be revoked by the County on the recommendation of the County Executive and with the approval of the Council, for failure to construct, operate, or maintain the cable system as required by this Chapter or the franchise agreement, or for some other material breach of this Chapter or the franchise agreement. If the County has issued a franchise specifically conditioned upon the completion of construction or other specific obligations by a specified date under Section 8A-9(c), failure of the franchisee to complete construction or comply with other specific obligations as required will result in the automatic forfeiture of the franchise without further action by the County. However, the County, at its discretion and for good cause shown by the franchisee, may grant an extension of time. The County must give a franchisee written notice that it is in material breach of this Chapter or the franchise agreement. If the franchisee does not correct the breach within 30 days of the notice, or corrective action is not being actively and expeditiously pursued, the County may give written notice to the franchisee of its intent to revoke the franchise. The County must give the franchisee written notice of the basis for a revocation, stating its reasons. An administrative hearing must be held under the County's Administrative Procedures Act before the County may revoke a franchise. The hearing procedures may be modified by the County Executive where appropriate.
(b) The presiding officer must issue a recommended decision after the administrative hearing. The County Executive may provide for the filing of written comments in response to the recommended decision. After the comment period, the County Executive must submit written recommendations to the Council.
(c) The Council must hold a public hearing, and then determine by written resolution whether or not to revoke the franchise based on the recommended decision, the recommendations of the County Executive, information presented at the public hearing, and other evidence in the record. The resolution must include reasons for the Council's decision.
(d) If the County revokes a franchise, or if for any other reason a franchisee abandons, terminates, or fails to operate or maintain service to its subscribers, and the franchisee does not have other authority to maintain and operate its facilities in the County’s public rights-of-way, the County may, subject to applicable law:
(1) require the former franchisee to remove its facilities and equipment at the franchisee's or surety's expense, or at the expense of both, after determining that the cable system cannot be economically maintained and operated;
(2) acquire ownership of the cable system at an equitable price on the recommendation of the County Executive and with the approval of the Council;
(3) after a public hearing, sell, assign, or transfer all or part of the assets of a cable system abandoned by a franchisee for the best price offer obtainable. However, the legal, character, financial, technical, and other qualifications of the purchaser must meet County approval. The County must pay any consideration received in excess of the County's costs, and after other creditors and subscriber claims have been satisfied, to the original franchisee. (FY 1991 L.M.C., ch. 3, § 1; 2006 L.M.C., ch. 34, § 1.)