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.
Commissioner Pai addresses WISPA
FCC Commissioner Pai addressed the Wireless Internet Service Provider Association meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada on October 15, 2014. He said noted that small ISPs serving rural areas face many challenges. “Consumers have lower income, distances are farther, and deployment is more expensive. Regulating broadband under Title II would only exacerbate these problems.” He said it would raise costs and cloud businesses in a haze of regulatory uncertainty; one-size-fits-all network management rules will especially harm wireless internet service providers (WISPs). He closed his remarks by saying: “Unfortunately, I’m worried that’s where the FCC might be headed when it comes to the Internet. By imposing Title II regulation, universal service charges would be added to Americans’ broadband bills and onerous new regulations would be placed on service providers. And then, when our rules drive many small WISPs out of business, the FCC would have to provide greater subsidies to encourage others companies to serve the rural areas that WISPs used to cover without any subsidy at all.“
Rural Broadband Experiments
The FCC announced that the application filing window for entities interested in participating in the rural broadband experiments will open on Thursday, October 23, 2014, at 9 a.m. Applicants have 15 days from the opening of the filing window to submit Form 5610. Thus, the application filing deadline is Friday, November 7, 2014, at 6 p.m.
As part of Form 5610, applicants must attach a dedicated bid form for each proposed project, a single descriptive data form listing all of their proposed projects, and certain project information. A link to Form 5610 will be available at http://www.fcc.gov/encyclopedia/rural-broadband-experiments on October 23, 2014. The FCC reminded applicants that the application filing deadline is a firm deadline; therefore, filings should be made as early in the application filing window as possible to ensure that applicants have ample time to correct any errors that may occur with their application.
Open Internet – Net Neutrality
On October 15, 2014, TMI reported that the PUC would consider a Staff recommendation to file comments in response to the FCC’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in which the FCC proposes a set of regulations intended to ensure that the Internet remains open. Without explanation, this item was removed from yesterday’s meeting agenda.
Proposed Registration Process for Non-Dominant NDIECs
The PUC has issued a PROPOSED Decision that would revise an instruction for the registration process for non-dominant interexchange carriers (NDIECs) established by Decision 10-09-017. That Decision adopted a list of instructions that defined, among other things, the items that an applicant must provide that demonstrate its financial ability to provide service in California. The PROPOSED Decision finds that D.10-09-017 instructions did not clearly establish the PUC’s intent regarding the registration process for NDIECs. Therefore, the PROPOSED Decision clarifies the instruction in order to remove ambiguities.