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.
Service to Cuba
The FCC removed Cuba from its “Exclusion List for International Section 214 Authorizations”. (The Exclusion List identifies particular facilities and/or countries that are not included in a global facilities-based Section 214 application, and, therefore, require a separate international Section 214 authorization. The separate Section 214 application is processed on a non-streamlined basis, in coordination with the U.S. Department of State.) See the Regulatory Mix dated 11/25/15. This means that: (1) facilities-based carriers with existing global Section 214 authorizations may provide services between the United States and Cuba without additional authorization; and (2) carriers seeking new international Section 214 authority do not have to request specific authority to provide facilities-based telecommunications services from the United States to Cuba. Instead, the U.S.-Cuba route is included in the global facilities-based Section 214 authorization along with all other countries. The FCC said its actions will make it easier for U.S. facilities-based carriers to initiate service to Cuba, promote open communications, and help foster bilateral communications between the United States and Cuba.
The FCC announced it selected the Virginia Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired (DBVI) for certification to participate in the National Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program (NDBEDP) for the state of Virginia, effective January 1, 2016. In 2012, the FCC selected the Virginia Department for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (VDDHH) as the NDBEDP certified program for the state of Virginia. On November 16, 2015, VDDHH informed the Commission that it would not continue participating in the NDBEDP and that it would relinquish its certification, effective December 31, 2015. Certification for DBVI will continue for the duration of the NDBEDP pilot program, subject to DBVI’s compliance with the Commission’s program requirements.
The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission issued a decision intended to strengthen the regulatory obligations that require that Canadians have access to reliable and effective 9-1-1 service. It directs non-carriers, as a condition of offering and providing any telecommunications service, including local exchange, wireless voice, local VoIP, and payphone services, to abide by all applicable existing and future obligations with respect to 9-1-1 service. The Commission also modified the existing requirement for underlying carriers to include 9-1-1 service provision in their service contracts or other arrangements with non-carriers. Therefore, underlying carriers are also to report any non-compliance with the 9-1-1 obligations. The Commission also imposes these modified requirements on non-carriers that provide services to other non-carriers. Click here for details.