Frequently Asked Questions

Below, the Office of Broadband Programs has provided answers to the most commonly asked cable and broadband questions. If you have an issue that is not addressed, please call us at 3-1-1 between 7 am and 7 pm to speak with someone, visit MC311, or click here to file a complaint online.

Do I have a choice of cable providers?

The county issues only non-exclusive franchises for cable television service. Montgomery County administers three cable franchises. Comcast provides cable service to most all areas of the County. RCN serves a portion of Montgomery County - Bethesda, the City of Gaithersburg, portions of the Silver Spring area, the City of Takoma Park, the Town of Chevy Chase, Chevy Chase Section 5, Village of Martin’s Addition & Village of North Chevy Chase. Verizon is offering cable services in many area of Montgomery County. Please contact Verizon to verify the availability of service in a specific area.

Neither cable operator offers service to my address

There are homes in Montgomery County where cable service is not available. These are generally rural areas where the infrastructure needed to provide service has not been constructed. In these cases, the cost to build the infrastructure necessary to provide cable services may be deferred to the individual requesting service. A plant extension extends the cable infrastructure to provide service to a specific area or neighborhood. There are several distance and equipment factors that determine if the cable operator is permitted to charge the homeowner.

Who regulates traditional telephone service in the state of Maryland?

The Public Service Commission regulates traditional telephone service in the State of Maryland. You can contact the PSC at 1-800-492-0474 or on-line www.psc.state.md.us

Does the Office of Broadband Programs regulate Direct TV and the Dish Network?

No. The Office of Broadband Programs only regulates the County’s franchised cable providers: Comcast, RCN & Verizon.

How can I get cable information from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)?

Cable Service Bureau Fact sheets are available for viewing at the FCC website: http://www.fcc.gov

Where can I find the Cable Franchise Agreements and County Code?

You can find this information on the regulations page.

I have a problem with the cable company that they are not resolving satisfactorily. What can be done about it?

You may file a complaint with the Office of Broadband Programs. Please click here.