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 announced plans to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) on July 23, 2015, from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. The event will also recognize the 5th anniversary of the Twenty-first Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010 (CVAA), which will be occurring in October of this year. The FCC’s ADA event will feature a panel of disability rights advocates from various organizations who will share stories about how advances in communication access have made a difference in their personal and professional lives as well as the lives of their family, friends, and colleagues. Live coverage of the event will be available at FCC.gov/live . A list of panelists is available here.
The FCC announced it is accepting applications from entities interested in receiving certification to distribute equipment under the National Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program (NDBEDP) to qualifying residents in Maine. Applications will be accepted until August 5, 2015. In 2012, the FCC selected Maine Center on Deafness (MCD) as the NDBEDP certified program for the state of Maine. In June 2015, MCD informed the FCC that it would not continue participating in the NDBEDP and that it would relinquish its certification effective June 30, 2015. The certified program selected for Maine will be reimbursed for eligible NDBEDP related costs that it incurs after its selection and during the fourth year of the NDBEDP pilot program, which began July 1, 2015, and ends June 30, 2016. Any public program or private entity may apply to the FCC for certification if it meets the FCC’s qualification requirements.
The RCA is seeking comment on how it should respond to the FCC’s proposals to revise its Lifeline rules. See our 6/19/15 blog FCC Modernizes Lifeline Program To Support Broadband Services. TMI Regulatory Bulletin Service subscribers see Bulletin dated 7/2/15. Comments are due August 17, 2015; reply comments are due August 26, 2015. The Commission is seeking comment specifically on the FCC’s proposals regarding minimum Lifeline service standards, streamlining the ETC designation process, encouraging increased state Lifeline subsidies, allowing ETCs to discontinue participation in the Lifeline program, and drawing distinctions between tribal lands.