Who We Are, And What We Do

The Michigan Coalition To Protect Public Rights-Of-Way (PROTEC) was formed in 1996 as a Local Government Consortium by several Michigan Municipalities interested in protecting their resident’s control over Public Rights-Of-Way, and their right to require reasonable service standards and receive fair compensation from those various industries utilizing that ROW, including in particular, the telecommunication and cable industries. PROTEC currently represents over 100 Michigan municipalities and is governed by the Cities of Dearborn , Livonia and Southfield. Michael J. Watza is PROTEC’s General Counsel.

PROTEC’s founders were responding to changes in Michigan laws which threatened to give telecommunications companies free, unrestricted access to public roads and easements. Such uncontrolled access threatened (and continues to threaten) the safety, health, and well being of every Michigan resident and business.

Since PROTEC’s formation, the residents and businesses of numerous cities, villages and townships have benefited from the allied efforts of the coalition. PROTEC has represented jurisdictions of all sizes through coordinated lobbying efforts at both the state and federal level.

PROTEC has expanded its efforts to meet the needs of every Michigan city, village and township, including dealing with concerns over public right-of-way usage by gas and electric companies.