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DA 98-63


Before the
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
Washington, DC 20554


In the Matter of )

) CC Docket No. 96-45
Federal-State Joint Board on ) (Report to Congress)
Universal Service )


ORDER

Adopted: January 14, 1998 Released: January 14, 1998

By the Chief, Universal Service Branch, Accounting and Audits Division, Common Carrier Bureau

1. The 1998 appropriations legislation for the Departments of Commerce, Justice, and State, H.R. 2267, directs the Commission to undertake a review of the implementation of the provisions of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (1996 Act) relating to universal service, and to submit a report to Congress no later than April 10, 1998. In a Public Notice released January 5, 1998, the Commission established a pleading cycle for comments on issues to be addressed in the report to Congress. Specifically, the Commission directed interested parties to file comments by January 20, 1998, and reply comments by February 2, 1998.(1)

2. In a pleading filed January 13, 1998, the Internet Access Coalition requests that the deadline for comments be extended until January 27, 1998, and that the deadline for reply comments be extended until February 6, 1998. The Internet Access Coalition states that, given the complexity of the issues to be addressed in the report to Congress, the Internet Access Coalition requires additional time to prepare useful and substantive comments.

3. We do not routinely grant extensions of time.(2) In light of the complexity and importance of the issues raised by the report to Congress, we want to ensure that there is a full and complete record before the Commission. We do not believe that a grant of this extension will harm the public interest by materially delaying the Commission's submission of the report to Congress.

4. We note that, in order to maximize time for parties to respond to initial comments, we extend the comment deadline to January 26, 1998, rather than January 27, 1998, as requested by the Internet Access Coalition.

5. Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED that the motion for extension of time filed by the Internet Access Coalition is GRANTED to the extent indicated herein. Accordingly, comments must be filed on or before January 26, 1998, and reply comments must be filed on or before February 6, 1998. All other requirements and procedures established in the Commission's January 5, 1998 Public Notice concerning the report to Congress remain in effect.

FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION

Lisa Gelb
Chief, Universal Service Branch
Accounting and Audits Division
Common Carrier Bureau


1. See Public Notice, DA 98-2 (January 5, 1998).
2. 47 C.F.R. 1.46(a).