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.
CenturyLink has asked the PUC to reconsider its Emergency Rules Governing Automatic Location Identification Service Decision. TMI Regulatory Bulletin Service subscribers see Bulletin dated 8/5/14. The emergency rules require any provider of ALI services to prove the reliability and affordability of their ALI services prior to transitioning to a different ALI service or database system, which may include self-provisioning, or providing a separate ALI service to PSAPs. CenturyLink noted that the PUC did not require CenturyLink’s predecessors to obtain PUC approval before hiring Intrado to perform ALI database management. CenturyLink said that it is concerned about the PUC’s decision to now regulate a provider’s vendor relationships.
The PUC approved a stipulation adopting a new price plan for Frontier Communications Northwest, Inc. The plan provides Frontier with pricing flexibility for phone services offered as packages and bundles. The plan does not impose specific caps on rates for such services but protects customers by not allowing the total price for a package or bundle to be more than the sum of the retail price of all the services available in the package or bundle. The plan allows Frontier to increase its primary line basic residential service rates by $2.00 upon the effective date of the plan and an additional $1.00 at the beginning of year three of the plan. Under the plan, Frontier may increase primary line basic business service rates in all rate groups up to $4.00 effective upon approval of the plan. For business services ISDN-PRI and DS-1, Frontier may increase rates up to 10% annually. In the “Other Services” category, which includes most calling features, Frontier may increase rates up to 25%, or $0.50 annually, whichever is greater. Frontier will continue to be subject to the PUC’s service quality rules and agreed to make certain investments in its network and provide a one-time $50,000 contribution to CUB Connects (which operates a website and hotline to assist consumers attempting to navigate the competitive telecommunications market.)
The FCC has released a document summarizing the procedures, terms, and conditions governing the submission of rural broadband experiments applications, the post-selection review of winning bidders, and other important information for parties seeking rural broadband experiment funding. See the Regulatory Mix dated 7/14/14 and 7/28/14. Formal applications for participation in the rural broadband experiments are due October 14, 2014. The FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau (Bureau) will conduct the application process over the Internet using the FCC Auction System. The Bureau will not accept applications in hard copy or through the Electronic Comment Filing System. The document discusses the application process, including application requirements, prohibited communications and due diligence; selection methodology and process; and post-selection procedures.
Note: Because the contents of the formal application are subject to approval by the Office of Management and Budget under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), the October 14 deadline is contingent on receipt of PRA approval prior to this date. If the deadline needs to be revised, the Bureau said it will adjust the deadline to provide a window of at least 15 days prior to the deadline for filing formal applications.