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 FCC released a report on the causes and impacts of the April 2014, multistate 911 outage that affected 911 calls to 81 PSAPs in seven states. The Report said that the outage “was a vivid example of the vulnerabilities that IP-supported architectures may present, without sufficient network safeguards and clear lines of accountability.” The report recommends that the FCC, state governments, and 911 industry participants take the following steps to preserve the reliability and integrity of the 911 system throughout the transition to NG911 and beyond:
- Charge the Communications Security, Reliability, and Interoperability Council with developing and refining a comprehensive set of best practices in this area.
- Conduct further FCC proceedings on 911 reliability.
- Improve intergovernmental and stakeholder information sharing.
- Improve situational awareness during an outage.
- Use enforcement action as necessary to safeguard reliable end-to-end 911 service.
- Monitor contractual relationships to establish clear operational roles and responsibilities for situational awareness and information sharing.
The ALJ has suspended the schedule of the Comcast/Time Warner merger proceeding until further ruling. The ALJ said that the ongoing discovery disputes apparent in the motions and responses filed warranted this action. In addition he noted that the FCC public notice of October 3, 2014, noticing a delay in the FCC proceeding makes delay in the proceedings at the PUC reasonable. Opening Briefs are no longer due October 20, 2014, and the rest of the schedule is suspended. The discovery cutoff of October 1, 2014, remains in place until further notice.
The PSC is seeking comment on how it should modify the state high-cost support mechanism for price cap carriers so that it complements the FCC’s Connect America Fund Phase II funding mechanism. The PUC asks if it should create two separate budgets, one for price cap carriers and one for rate-of-return carriers. It also seeks comment on how the new mechanism should be designed, whether it should use the FCC’s CAF II model to determine areas that need support, and whether it should adopt broadband obligations similar to those imposed by the FCC. Comments are due November 13, 2014. Reply comments are due December 3, 2014. A hearing will be held December 10, 2014.