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.
The Senate Judiciary Committee announced the witnesses for its July 1, 2014, hearing “Preserving an Open Internet: Rules to Promote Competition and Protect Main Street Consumers” to be held in Burlington, VT. The witnesses are: The Honorable Michael Copps, Former FCC Commissioner, now Special Adviser to the Media and Democracy Reform Initiative of Common Cause; Martha Reid, Vermont State Librarian; Cabot Orton, Proprietor of The Vermont Country Store; Lisa Groeneveld, COO of Logic Supply, Inc.
The FCC announced that the Department of Justice has requested access to 477 data in connection with its review of the TWC/Comcast transaction. DOJ is seeking access to “disaggregated broadband subscriber data collected through FCC Form 477 (and any updates that become available during the pendency of the investigation), by carrier and census tract, from June 2009 forward.” Any affected provider has until July 3, 2014, to oppose the disclosure to DOJ.
The FCC is seeking comment on appropriate market analysis to use in evaluating CenturyLink’s petition for forbearance from dominant carrier regulation and the Computer Inquiry tariffing requirement for all of its packet-switched and optical transmission services (enterprise broadband services) that are still subject to those obligations. (Due to a series of mergers, CenturyLink’s enterprise broadband services are subject to different degrees of regulation depending on which CenturyLink affiliate – Qwest, Embarq, or CenturyTel – historically provided service in the area.) Comments are due July 7, 2014; reply comments are due July 14, 2014.
CenturyLink asserts that the relevant geographic market for analyzing competition for its enterprise broadband services is the entire country. However, the FCC proposes to use a traditional market power analysis in which it would account for potential differences in competition for enterprise broadband services among various customer classes (e.g., small and medium businesses, as opposed to large enterprise customers; customers with localized or low-volume needs versus those with needs for nationwide contracts). It seeks comment on this proposal, as well as how it should delineate customer classes. The FCC said it intends to issue a data request to help it determine the level of competition that various customer classes face for the enterprise broadband services at issue in CenturyLink’s forbearance petition.