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.
FCC Systems Shutdown and Filing Extensions
The FCC announced an Information Technology (IT) upgrade that will cause certain databases to be unavailable and will require that certain filing deadlines be extended. Specifically, the FCC will be performing IT upgrades and improvements from 6 p.m. EDT on September 2, 2015, through the Labor Day weekend. The work should be completed by 8 a.m. EDT on September 8, 2015. During this time period, most resources normally accessible through the FCC’s web site, including access to all electronic filing systems and electronic dockets, will not be available. However, the following systems will remain available: Network Outage Reporting System (NORS), the Consumer Help Center (CHC), and the Disaster Information Reporting System (DIRS). The FCC’s website will be available but with reduced content and limited search capabilities. The FCC itself will remain open but voicemail will not work and most staff will not have email. Telephone service will not be affected. All systems should be available by September 8, 2015.
Due to the inaccessibility of its systems, the FCC is extending the filing deadlines for all regulatory and enforcement filings (but not NORS filings) that fall during this time period. Thus, filings that would otherwise be due on September 2, 3, 4, or 8, 2015, will now be due on September 9, 2015. To the extent the due dates for filings to which reply or responsive pleadings are allowed are affected by the Public Notice, the due dates for reply or responsive pleadings shall be extended by the same number of days. There is a separate deadline for statutory filing deadlines (e.g., Petitions For Reconsideration.) See the Public Notice for details on how to determine due dates for responsive pleadings, the treatment of statutory filing deadlines, the processing of Special Temporary Authorities, the use of Fee Filer to make regulatory fee payments, and the earlier unavailability of the ULS, ASR, E-106, and TCNS systems.
The FCC announced the award of Connect America Fund Phase II model-based support to Hawaiian Telecom Inc. (HTI) and Micronesian Telecommunications Corporation (MTC). HTI will receive $4,424,391 in support to serve 11,081 locations in the state of Hawaii. MTC will receive $2,627,177 to serve 11,143 locations in the Northern Mariana Islands. The FCC directed the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) to disburse the approved amounts to HTI and MTC. Since the Phase II model-based support for the areas where they are accepting support is greater than their Phase I support, and consistent with each company’s election, USAC was directed to disburse to each carrier from the broadband reserve account a lump sum payment associated with January through July 2015.
Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear signed an executive order creating the Kentucky Communications Network Authority (KCNA) and its governing board to manage the KentuckyWired open-access broadband network. The Governor said the project will create high-speed Internet connectivity to every corner of the Commonwealth to enhance economic development and workforce and educational opportunities while sustaining Kentucky’s economy for generations to come. The project consists of $30 million in state bond funds and $23.5 million in Federal Funds. An additional $270.9 million will be funded with private investment. The KCNA will be a part of the General Government Cabinet and attached to the Office of the Governor.