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.
Schools and Libraries
The FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau is asking for comment on a draft eligible services list (ESL) for the schools and libraries universal support mechanism (also known as the E-rate program) for funding year 2015. Comments are due September 3, 2014; reply comments are due September 18, 2014. The proposed ESL implements the FCC’s latest E-Rate decision See the Regulatory Mix dated 7/15/14 by streamlining the list of supported services from the former priority one category into a new category one section to better tailor support towards high-capacity broadband, and eliminate support for outdated, legacy, and other services that do not provide broadband. Among other things, the proposed ESL: (1) removes web hosting, voice mail, and email; (2) removes paging, directory assistance charges, text messaging, custom calling services, direct inward dialing, 900/976 call blocking, and inside wire maintenance plans; (3) limits internal connections to those broadband internal connections components and services needed to enable high-speed broadband connectivity; (4) includes caching as an eligible broadband internal connections component; and (5) includes presentation and formatting changes to simplify the E-rate application process.
Advanced Telecommunications Capability
The FCC initiated its tenth inquiry into the deployment of advanced telecommunications capability in the U.S. The FCC is seeking data and information to help it determine “whether advanced telecommunications capability is being deployed to all Americans in a reasonable and timely fashion.” Comments are due September 4, 2014; reply comments are due September 19, 2014. Among other things, the FCC seeks comment on: (1) the benchmarks it should use to define “advanced telecommunications capability;” (2) whether it should establish separate benchmarks for fixed and mobile services; (3) the data it should rely on in measuring broadband; (4) whether it should modify the 4 megabits per second (Mbps) download and 1 Mbps upload (4 Mbps/1 Mbps) speed benchmark relied on in the past reports; (5) whether it should consider latency and data usage allowances as additional core characteristics of advanced telecommunications capability; and (6) how it should address mobile and satellite services data.