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Federal Communications Commission
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This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. Release of the full text of a Commission order constitutes official action. See MCI v. FCC. 515 F 2d 385 (D.C. Circ 1974).

November 9, 2000
Michael Balmoris 202-418-0253
Email: mbalmori@fcc.gov


Biennial Review Action Highlights Commission’s Efforts to Reduce Regulations as Competition Develops

Goal is to Make Service Quality Information More Useful for Consumers

Washington, D.C. – Today, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) proposed to revamp the service quality information that price cap, or larger, local phone companies report to the FCC. Currently, these carriers report more than thirty categories of service quality information annually. In an effort to make the information more useful to consumers and to eliminate unnecessary rules, the Commission is proposing to streamline reporting requirements into six core categories of information.

Specifically, the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) adopted today seeks to accomplish the following three goals:

  • Eliminate Unnecessary Regulations as Competition Develops – Every two years, the FCC reviews its regulations relating to telecommunications services to determine whether any of them can be eliminated. Today’s biennial review action proposes to streamline the Commission’s existing service quality reporting requirements contained in ARMIS, which is an automated system for collecting financial and operating data from incumbent local exchange carriers (LECs).

  • Make Service Quality Information More Consumer Oriented – The proposals in the NPRM would arm consumers with the necessary information to make informed decisions when choosing telecommunication providers. Public disclosure of this information should, in turn, enhance the ability of the phone carriers to compete on service quality as well as other factors.

  • Enhance Federal-State Partnership – Many states currently use the service quality information filed with the FCC. The NPRM will explore alternative ways the Commission can continue to work with the states to ensure that consumers enjoy high quality telecommunications service.
Service Quality Performance Data With today’s action, the Commission is seeking comment on modifications to its service quality monitoring program to reflect the current marketplace where competition is emerging and carriers are offering new services. Specifically, the Commission is:
  • Proposing to reduce significantly the number of categories of information that carriers are required to file with the FCC to the following six consumer-oriented categories:
    1. Missed Installations – A missed installation occurs when service is not provided when promised to the customer.
    2. Installation Intervals – The length of time it takes for service to be installed.
    3. Trouble Reports – The number of times there is a problem with the line.
    4. Out-of-Service Troubles – An out-of-service trouble means that a consumer cannot make or receive calls.
    5. Missed Repair Appointments – A missed repair commitment occurs when a customer trouble is not repaired when promised to the customer.
    6. Repair Intervals – How long it takes to fix service problems.
  • Seeking comment generally on what additional service quality information consumers would find useful, such as the average length of time customers wait on hold before speaking to a carrier's customer service representative, and the benefits and burdens of requiring carriers to report such information.

  • Seeking comment on whether consumers would find useful service quality information for advanced services and the benefits and burdens of requiring carriers to report such information.

  • Seeking comment on whether consumers should have access to service quality information from all local exchange carriers, including competitors to the incumbent, and the benefits and burdens of requiring carriers to report such information.


    Action by the Commission November 9, 2000, by Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (FCC 00-399). Chairman Kennard and Commissioners Ness, Furchtgott-Roth, Powell, and Tristani.

    CC Docket No. 00-229

    Common Carrier Staff Contact:
    Louise Klees-Wallace (202) 418-0800

    News about the Federal Communications Commission can also be found
    on the Commission’s web site www.fcc.gov.