The Regulatory Mix, TMI’s daily blog of regulatory activities, is a snapshot of PUC, FCC, legislative, and occasionally court, issues that our regulatory monitoring team uncovers each day. Depending on their significance, some items may be the subject of a TMI Regulatory Bulletin.
On May 23, 2014, the US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit issued two Opinions denying all Petitions For Review of the FCC’s 2011 ICC/USF decision. Among other things, the Court upheld the FCC’s rules allowing LECs to impose access charges for functions performed by their VoIP partners; its implementation of bill-and-keep for all traffic; its transition plan; the new rules on access stimulation; the FCC’s authority to require USF support recipients to provide broadband access; its changes to USF support levels; and its authority to use auctions to distribute USF support. Commissioner Clyburn issued a statement saying: “After years of good faith efforts faltered, voting to approve the comprehensive reform of universal service and intercarrier compensation continues to be one of my proudest moments at the FCC. The reforms are changing the lives of millions of Americans who will receive broadband for the first time. I am extremely pleased that the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed the FCC’s decision. I look forward to working with the Chairman and my colleagues as we tackle the next steps of reform.”
The FCC also announced the tentative agenda for its June 13, 2014 Open Meeting. The tentative agenda includes:
- Technology Transitions Presentation: The FCC will hear a presentation with an update on the efforts to transition circuit-switched networks to Internet Protocol (IP) networks. The presentation will include a status report on the voluntary experiments proposed by AT&T designed to assess how the transition to IP networks affects users.
- Expanding Community Access to Radio: The FCC will hear a presentation with an update on the continuing efforts to launch new and diverse voices to the American public via increased access to Low Power FM radio stations.
The PSC held a first-of-its-kind symposium to discuss the future of the energy grid in New York State. The May 22nd daylong event brought together a wide range of energy experts to discuss the PSC’s Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) initiative to restructure New York’s energy industry. Energy experts shared thoughts about how electric utility practices and regulatory requirements can be aligned with technological advances to achieve system efficiency, greater customer choice, and greater penetration of clean generation and energy efficiency technologies. A video of the symposium will also be posted on the Commission’s website. TMI Regulatory Bulletin Service subscribers see New York Bulletin dated 5/23/14 for further details on the PSC’s REV.
Commissioners and staff from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) will hold a joint meeting on May 28 to discuss issues of mutual concern to their respective agencies. The public meeting will focus on grid reliability, nuclear power plant license renewals and dam safety. It will include presentations by FERC and NRC staff, as well as participation by staff of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation. The meeting also will be webcast by the NRC and available through http://www.nrc.gov/.