Rural Telcos File Petition for Review of LNP with U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia

FCC Did Not Comply With Regulatory Flexibility Act and the Administrative Procedures Act


RURAL TELCOS FILE PETITION FOR REVIEW OF LNP WITH U.S. COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

FCC Did Not Comply With Regulatory Flexibility Act and the Administrative Procedures Act

Washington, D.C., December 15, 2003 –Today, the National Telecommunications Cooperative Association (NTCA)and the Organization for the Promotion and Advancement of Small Telecommunications Companies Contact Donna Taylor at 703-351-2086(OPASTCO) filed a petition with the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, calling for a review of the wireline to wireless (intermodal) portability requirements, (CC Docket No. 95-116, FCC 03-284) as it pertains to small, rural wireline local exchange carriers. The associations filed this petition for review stating that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) did not comply with the Regulatory Flexibility Act and the Administrative Procedure Act before imposing the wireline to wireless number portability requirements contained in the docket. NTCA and OPASTCO believe that these new requirements will have especially significant adverse economic impacts on the telco members that both organizations represent.

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Background

The associations first filed a Petition for Partial Stay and Clarification with the FCC on November 21, 2003. The associations sought a partial stay and clarification of the FCC’s wireline-to-wireless local number portability (LNP) order and the November 24 implementation deadline with respect to small and mid-sized incumbent local exchange carriers (ILECs). The associations contended that the November 24 compliance deadline for all carriers operating within the top 100 MSAs is not reasonable for 2% carriers (those who individually serve less than 2% of the nation’s access lines), since the FCC only provided carriers with the guidance November 10. In addition, the associations argued that the FCC failed to address many important issues, which must be resolved before the 2% carriers can effectively implement intermodal LNP.

The FCC has yet to officially respond to the filing.

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Rural Telcos File Petition for Review with U.S. Court of Appeals/2-2-2

About NTCA:
The National Telecommunications Cooperative Association (NTCA) is a premier association representing more than 550 locally owned and controlled telecommunications cooperatives throughout rural and small-town America. NTCA provides its members with legislative, regulatory, and industry representation; meetings, publications, and educational programs; and an array of employee benefit programs. Visit us at http://www.ntca.org.

About OPASTCO:
The Organization for the Promotion and Advancement of Small Telecommunications Companies (OPASTCO) represents more than 500 small, independently owned, local telecommunications companies serving primarily rural areas of the United States and Canada. OPASTCO membership includes both commercial companies and cooperatives, which range in size from fewer than 100 to 100,000 access lines, and collectively serve more than 2.6 million customers. OPASTCO represents rural telecommunications interests before federal regulatory bodies and Congress, provides publications, and holds two conventions annually in January and July of each year, addressing the needs of the small telecommunications industry. The association has an affiliate 501(c)(3) nonprofit, the Foundation for Rural Education and Development (FRED). Visit the OPASTCO Web site at www.opastco.org.