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 will accept comments on Petitions for Reconsideration filed by CTIA-The Wireless Association and a group of wireless ETCs in the reconsideration of its Order revising Lifeline rules (WC dockets 09-197, 10-90, and 11-42). Oppositions to the petitions must be filed within 15 days of the date of public notice of the petitions in the Federal Register. Replies must be filed within 10 days after that. TMI Regulatory Bulletin Service subscribers see Bulletins dated 7/2/15, and 7/1/15.
FCC – CAF
August 27, 2015, was the final day for carriers to decide whether to accept the offer of support from Phase II of the Connect America Fund (CAF). The FCC made several announcements concerning awards. The carriers listed below will deliver broadband at speeds of at least 10 Mbps for downloads and 1 Mbps uploads to rural service areas where the cost of broadband deployment might otherwise be prohibitive.
- CenturyLink has accepted nearly $506 million in annual support from the CAF to expand and support broadband for over 2.3 million rural customers in 33 states. “CenturyLink’s acceptance of over one-half billion dollars from the Connect America Fund represents a huge investment in broadband for its rural customers,” said FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler. “This is the largest amount accepted by any company to date – and the opportunities that modern broadband will provide for the rural communities CenturyLink serves are priceless.” See FCC release here.
- Cincinnati Bell has accepted $2,229,130 in annual, ongoing support from the CAF to expand and support broadband for over 14,000 of its rural customers in IN, KY, and OH. See FCC release here.
- AT&T, Inc. has accepted $427,706,650 in annual, ongoing support from the CAF to expand and support broadband for over 2.2 million of its rural customers in 18 States. See FCC release here.
- Consolidated Telecom, Inc. has accepted $13,922,480 in annual, ongoing support from the CAF to expand and support broadband for nearly 50,000 of its rural customers in six States. See FCC release here.
- Ten telecommunications carriers have accepted a combined $1.5 billion in annual support for rural broadband deployment from the CAF, which, together with the carrier’s own investment, will expand broadband to nearly 7.3 million rural consumers in 45 states nationwide and one U.S. territory over the next few years. Most of the ten carriers are major national carriers, and their acceptance will infuse over $9 billion from the CAF into rural broadband over the next six years. See FCC release here.
Verizon filed a petition to deregulate 10 exchanges it says qualify for deregulation: Blanco, Collinsville, George West, Gordonville, Jarrell, Premont, Port O’Connor, Rosharon, Rusk, and Seadrift. Verizon said that these markets have a population below 100,000 and otherwise qualify to be deregulated under state statute. Staff should file its response to the petition no later than 9/10/15 the PUC said.