FCC Inquiry on Special Access


The Federal Communications Commission is asking for voluntarily submission of facilities data to assist in evaluating the various issues that have been raised in the Special Access Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.

The FCC requests all providers, including ILECs, CLECs, interexchange carriers, cable operators and companies that provide fixed wireless communications services, to provide location and facilities data for each listed Statistical Area. Data that contain confidential and proprietary information should be submitted in accordance with a revised protective order that was released at the same time. Submissions are due by Jan. 27, 2011.

Public Knowledge Legal Director Harold Feld said, "We are pleased that the FCC is moving ahead with a targeted data request to find the facts from a very distorted special access market that is overcharging business customers by an estimated $10 billion. The nature of the request encourages us to believe that the FCC is closing in on the key issues, and will be able to propose needed changes to promote competition and lower prices sooner rather than later. We note that while the request is voluntary at this point, the FCC has the power to compel full and honest responses. We expect the FCC will use that authority if it doesn't receive the information it needs."

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