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.
The FCC released the Third Report And Order, Further Report And Order, And Order On Reconsideration that it adopted on March 31, 2016. It adopts significant reforms to encourage more Lifeline providers to deliver supported broadband services and transition the program from primarily supporting voice services to targeting support at modern broadband services. The orders run 224 pages. TMI is analyzing this order and will issue a Briefing shortly.
The FCC’s Office of Managing Director announced that effective on or after September 1, 2016, the FCC will implement various changes to CORES, including:
- Requiring existing and new users to designate user-specific IDs (Usernames) to access FCC Registration Numbers (FRNs) and related records;
- Allowing registrants to establish multiple Usernames for each FRN with different levels of access;
- Requiring users to provide a valid e-mail address for online access to the system; and
- Establishing password-recovery security questions specific to each user.
The FCC will also be implementing a “scoped pilot launch” later this month to solicit feedback on the changes. Specific FRN owners will be contacted and invited to participate in the pilot program by the Office of Managing Director as the pilot program progresses. The pilot will end by August 31, 2016.
SB 1250, introduced in February 2016, is set for hearing May 2, 2016. This bill would require notification of a major rural outage of service, as defined, of specified providers of telecommunication services and require the PUC in consultation with the Office of Emergency Services (OES) to establish the requirements. It defines “major rural outage” as an outage of telecommunications service in a rural area, experienced by a facilities-based provider of telecommunications services that the FCC requires to provide access to 911 service, that is both (A) of 30 or more minutes duration and (B) potentially affects 75,000 or more user-minutes. All facilities-based providers of telecommunications services would be required to provide specific outage information within specific timeframes to OES.
The Broadband Deployment Board within the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies is now accepting applications for broadband infrastructure project grants that support the deployment of broadband internet service to unserved Coloradans in rural communities throughout the state. Up to $2.4 million in grants is available in its first application cycle. For information and applications click here. Applications must be submitted by June 30, 2016.