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 Briefing.
March 31, 2016, Open Meeting
The FCC announced the agenda for Its March 31, 2016, Open Meeting. As expected, the following three items are on the agenda:
- Implementation of the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010: A Notice of Proposed Rulemaking seeking comment on proposals to expand the amount of and access to video described programming, for the benefit of consumers who are blind or visually impaired.
- Lifeline and Link Up Reform and Modernization: A Third Report and Order, Further Report and Order, and Order on Reconsideration to comprehensively restructure and modernize the Lifeline program to efficiently and effectively connect low-income Americans to broadband, strengthen program oversight and administration, and take additional measures to eliminate waste, fraud, and abuse.
- Protecting the Privacy of Customers of Broadband Services: A Notice of Proposed Rulemaking seeking comment on a proposed framework for ensuring that consumers have the tools they need to make informed choices about how their data is used and when it is shared by their broadband providers.
There is also a Consent Agenda with five Media Bureau items.
The US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (Court) has stayed the FCC’s attempt to apply its interim interstate inmate calling service (ICS) rate caps of $0.21 per-minute for debit and prepaid calls and $0.25 per-minute for collect calls to intrastate calls. See the Regulatory Mix dated 3/21/16. TMI Briefing Service subscribers see Briefing dated 3/24/16.
In response to the Court’s Order, FCC Commissioner Pai issued a statement saying, in part: “The ruling comes on the heels of the latest judicial reversal of the FCC in this proceeding. Just two weeks ago, that same court stayed the rate regulations that the agency sought to impose on inmate calling services. Nonetheless, the Commission issued a Public Notice claiming that these regulations – and specifically, their application to intrastate rates – would take effect anyway. The court’s decision yesterday cut this end-run short.”