Congressman Brad Sherman

Representing the 30th District of CALIFORNIA

Air Dodgers Games Now! Sherman & Five Congressional Colleagues Urge IMMEDIATE BINDING ARBITRATION

  

Jul 28, 2014
Press Release
Sherman & Five Congressional Colleagues Urge IMMEDIATE BINDING ARBITRATION

Washington DC – Six Los Angeles area members of Congress, led by Congressman Brad Sherman (D - Sherman Oaks) called on Time Warner Cable, DIRECTV and all other providers to enter into binding arbitration to resolve the current dispute and air Dodgers games on all LA-area cable and satellite systems.

The letter directed to DIRECTV CEO Michael White, and Time Warner CEO Robert Marcus reads, “Now, on behalf of Dodgers fans throughout Southern California, we urge that Time Warner Cable, DirecTV and all other TV providers enter into binding arbitration, so that a neutral third party can determine the right price and terms for the Dodgers network. This will be a fair and fast way to return programming to consumers.”

The letter also requested that SportsNet LA be made available immediately to all fans before an agreement is reached, beginning with tomorrow night’s game against the Atlanta Braves. The arbitration would determine the amount payable for tomorrow’s game and all subsequent games

The letter builds on a letter signed by LA Congress members urging for mediation. Unlike mediation, binding arbitration would impose a deal on the parties and could be effective immediately, whether or not all the parties thought the deal was fair.

Reporters are invited to seek comment from the Los Angeles Dodgers.

See the full text of the letter below:

July 28, 2014


Mr. Michael White
CEO, Chairman, and President, DIRECTV
2230 E Imperial Hwy 
El Segundo, CA 90245
 
Mr. Robert D. Marcus
CEO and Chairman, Time Warner Cable
60 Columbus Circle 
New York, NY 10023


Dear Mr. White and Mr. Marcus: 

America loves baseball. Los Angeles loves the Dodgers. Everyone loves television. 

We write to express our continued concern over the ongoing dispute on how to provide residents of Los Angeles with access to Los Angeles Dodgers television broadcasts. Despite negotiations, the dispute continues and there is no indication that your companies are making progress on reaching a resolution. The season is more than midway through and millions of Dodgers fans are still unable to watch the games. 

Last week, eight members of Congress, led by Tony Cardenas, sent a letter to the FCC asking Chairman Wheeler to mediate this dispute and ensure that consumers in Los Angeles can watch their home team.  But while such mediation would be helpful, it would not be binding or certain to resolve the dispute.

Now, on behalf of Dodgers fans throughout Southern California, we urge that Time Warner Cable, DirecTV and all other TV providers enter into binding arbitration, so that a neutral third party can determine the right price and terms for the Dodgers network. This will be a fair and fast way to return programming to consumers.

Additionally, as you enter into the arbitration process, fans should no longer be left in the dark. We are requesting that SportsNet LA be made available immediately to all fans, beginning with tomorrow night’s game against the Atlanta Braves. The arbitration would determine the amount payable for games aired both before and after the arbitration is complete.

We look forward to assisting in any way we can to help resolve this impasse and return Dodgers programming to our constituents. Thank you for your attention and consideration of this important request. Feel free to contact Congressman Sherman for more information.

Sincerely, 
Rep. Brad Sherman
Rep. Janice Hahn
Rep. Gloria Negrete McLeod
Rep. Alan Lowenthal
Rep. Grace Napolitano
Rep. Karen Bass

CC: Los Angeles Dodgers  
AT&T U-verse
Charter Communications 
Cox Communications
DISH Network
Verizon Fios