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.
ETC and Lifeline Responsibilities
In a recent ex parte filing, AT&T provided data to support its assertion that there is no reason in law or policy for the FCC to continue its current overly-broad Eligible Telecommunications Carrier ( ETC) regime or its mandatory Lifeline requirements for AT&T’s ILECs. For its analysis, AT&T geocoded every AT&T Illinois consumer customer of wireline voice telephone service as of May 2014 by census block (CB) and then associated this data with the outputs of the FCC’s Connect America Model (CAM) 4.1.1 and data from the National Broadband Map (NBM) and the Census Bureau. AT&T said that its Illinois data “show that, as a legal and policy matter, it is unnecessary for the Commission to compel price cap carriers to offer standalone voice and participate in the Lifeline program throughout their service area. Even in rural, high-cost areas, consumers have a multitude of competitive offerings available to them and, in overwhelming numbers, have rejected ILEC wireline service in favor of those competitive services. AT&T urges the Commission to update its ETC and Lifeline rules and requirements to better reflect the existing competitive landscape.” AT&T said it is preparing the same analysis for Louisiana and hopes to add it to the record later this month.
The FCC’s Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau terminated all but one of the proceedings it had previously proposed to terminate as dormant. See the Regulatory Mix dated 7/22/14. Link to list . After further evaluation, the Bureau decided to leave open one proceeding included on the original list, namely, In the Matter of ASAP Paging, Inc., Petition for Preemption of Public Utility Commission of Texas Concerning Retail of Local Calls to CMRS Carriers, WC Docket No. 04-6. Once the Bureau’s Order is published in the Federal Register, the named proceedings will be terminated in the FCC’s Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS). However, the record in the terminated proceedings will remain part of the FCC’s official records, and the various pleadings, orders, and other documents in these dockets will continue to be accessible to the public, post-termination.
The FCC announced the deadline for filing comments in its Third Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking concerning Text-to-911. Comments are due October 16, 2014; replies are due November 17, 2014. The Notice seeks additional comment on how enhanced location information could eventually be generated and delivered with texts to 911. See the Regulatory Mix dated 8/11/14; TMI Regulatory Bulletin Service subscribers see Bulletin dated 9/15/14.