AT&T Asks FCC to Take Action on “Nefarious” Inter-Carrier Compensation Practices

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 AT&T last week asked the FCC to address what it called “nefarious” inter-carrier compensation(ICC) practices including unusually high tandem switching and transport access charges and non-competitive 800-number database dips. In a blog post AT&T noted that such practices are counter-productive to FCC efforts to phase...Learn More

Consumer Complaint Leads to InContact Rural Call Completion Settlement

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Cloud contact center application provider InContact has agreed to pay a $100,000 civil penalty and implement a compliance program in a rural call completion settlement with the FCC. It’s the smallest of five such settlements that have been made with the FCC but it also...Learn More

Verizon Rural Call Completion Hotline Launched in FCC Compliance Plan

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Rural telcos that have problems with calls not going through to their customers from Verizon customers now have a hot line to call at Verizon. In addition, Verizon plans to award $30,000 to $50,000 for an academic study on methods to determine and resolve rural...Learn More

Rural Call Completion Problem Garners More Attention with New Senate Bill

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The latest attempt to stop problems with calls not going through to rural areas comes from two U.S. senators, who have introduced the Improving Rural Call Quality and Reliability Act. The legislation, introduced by Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-Minnesota) and Jon Tester (D-Montana) would direct the...Learn More

Comptel Rural Call Completion Reporting Protest Could Delay Implementation

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The FCC has underestimated what it will cost communications service providers to comply with rural call completion reporting requirements, says Comptel. “The FCC has failed to provide any, much less specific and objective, support for its estimate of the burden of complying with the new...Learn More

Appeals Court Rejects Connect America Fund Challenges

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Small rural telecommunications service providers experienced a setback Friday when an appeals court upheld Federal Communications Commission authority to transition today’s voice-focused Universal Service program to a broadband-focused Connect America Fund (CAF) and to reform the inter-carrier compensation system. Connect America Fund Challenges Several parties...Learn More

Telecom Advisors Say States May Have to Make Up Shortfall from CAF Reforms

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States must act – and act promptly—to determine how they will address an impending shortfall in funding for rural broadband and telecom services, according to a new report issued today by telecom advisory firm Balhoff & Williams, LLC. “Our analysis suggests that service will falter...Learn More

FCC Report Recommends Reducing Small Telco Rate of Return

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A report issued by the Federal Communications Commission last week recommends a substantial reduction in the rate of return that the nation’s smallest telephone companies earn through the inter-carrier compensation (ICC) system. Since 1990 that rate has been 11.25% but if the recommendations made by...Learn More

Level 3 to Pay $975,000 in Rural Call Completion Settlement

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Level 3 has agreed to make a $975,000 “voluntary contribution” to the U.S. Treasury as part of the settlement of a Federal Communications Commission investigation into the carrier’s rural call completion practices. In a consent decree, Level 3 also agreed to complete long-distance calls to...Learn More

NTCA: Uncertainty Drove 69% of Rural Telcos to Cancel Projects

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More than two-thirds (69%) of small telephone companies have postponed or canceled plans to upgrade their landline communications networks  because of uncertainty about Universal Service and inter-carrier compensation reform, according to data released today by rural broadband association NTCA. The NTCA estimates the total value...Learn More

NTCA Asks FCC for Clarification, Incentives on IP Interconnection

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AT&T’s proposal to shut down much of its traditional telecom infrastructure was bound to shake up the telecom industry – and evidence of that shakeup came last week in the form of an FCC filing from the National Telecommunications Cooperative Association. In a petition for...Learn More

Colorado Bill Would Phase Out State High-Cost Universal Service Fund

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A proposal to phase out a statewide high-cost Universal Service program in Colorado has attracted the ire of CenturyLink, which is the incumbent local carrier in a large part of the state and a major recipient of funding from the current program. “There is still...Learn More

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