VOL. 13, NO. 44
November 6, 2017

February 6-7, 2018
Policy Summit

November 16
November 9

November 13

November 15 

December 4 

December 15

December 19
FCC to Consider Certain
Pole Attachment Policies
at November Meeting
At its November 16 Open Meeting, the Federal Communications will be considering a Report and Order, Declaratory Ruling, and Further NPRM and Order on accelerating wireline broadband deployment by removing barriers to infrastructure investment.

According to a fact sheet, the Report and Order would: 
  • Codify a rule excluding capital costs recovered via make-ready fees from pole attachment rates; establishing a 180-day shot clock for resolution of pole attachment access complaints; and allowing incumbent local exchange carriers (LECs) access to infrastructure owned by other LECs.
  • Streamline the copper retirement process.
  • Remove a rule that prohibits incumbent LECs from engaging in useful advanced coordination with entities affected by network changes.
  • Streamline the section 214(a) discontinuance process by reducing the comment and automatic-grant timeframes for applications seeking to: (i) stop taking new customers for low-speed legacy voice and data services; (ii) discontinue low-speed legacy data services for which carriers already are not taking new customers; and (iii) discontinue low-speed legacy voice and data services with no customers; and clarifying that carriers need only consider their end users in seeking discontinuance authority.
In addition, the FNPRM would request comment on:
  • Streamlining the process to retire services that do not meet the Commission current definition of high-speed broadband (25 Mbps/3 Mbps) service.
  • How utilities should treat requests by pole attachers to overlash existing wiring or conduct customer drops.
  • Proposals to further streamline the network change disclosure and discontinuance processes.
  • Whether the Commission can take targeted actions to facilitate rebuilding and repairing broadband infrastructure after natural disasters.
In a related order under consideration during the November meeting, the FCC will examine replacement of utility poles to support small cell facilities and next-generation wireless services. The order would 
  • Eliminate the requirement for historic preservation review when utility poles are replaced with substantially identical poles that can support antennas or other wireless communications equipment.
  • Replacement utility poles would be excluded from review where the following conditions are met:
    • The original pole is not itself a historic property;
    • The replacement pole will be placed in the same hole, will have an appearance consistent with the original, and will cause no new ground disturbance.
  • Consolidate the Commission's historic preservation review procedures, currently in a variety of locations, into a single rule, making it easier to find, understand, and comply with the rules.
Competitors' Reception Set
for November 11 in Baltimore 
INCOMPAS invites you to the Competitors' Reception, Saturday, November 11, from November 11, 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. in Poe A-B at the Hilton Baltimore.

Sponsors of the event include Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott, LLC, Granite Telecommunications, MACC - Midwest Association of Competitive Communications, T-Mobile, TeleQuality Communications Inc. and Uniti Fiber.

The event will take place prior to the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) Annual Committee Meetings in Baltimore, November 12-15. Please note that the Competitors' Reception is not sponsored by NARUC, nor is it a part of the meeting agenda.