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                           1.   Before the
                Federal Communications Commission
                     Washington, D.C. 20554


In the Matter of                 )
                                )
                                )
FULLTEL, INC.                    )    File No. EB-01-IH-0017g
OCN# 4589                        )    NAL/Acct. No. 200132080038
                                )
                                )
                                )
                                )


           NOTICE OF APPARENT LIABILITY FOR FORFEITURE

   Adopted:  April 20, 2001             Released: April 24, 2001

By the Chief, Enforcement Bureau:


                        I.   INTRODUCTION



In this Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture (``NAL''), we 
find that Fulltel, Inc. (``Fulltel'') has apparently violated  47 
C.F.R.   52.15(f)  by willfully  failing  to report  its  number 
utilization and  forecast data.   Based upon  our review  of  the 
facts and circumstances in this case, we conclude that Fulltel is 
apparently liable for a forfeiture in the amount of $6,000.



                         II.       BACKGROUND


Section 251(e) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (the 
``Act''), grants  the Commission  plenary jurisdiction  over  the 
North American Numbering  Plan (``NANP'')  and related  telephone 
numbering issues  in  the  United  States.   The  Commission  has 
identified two primary goals  related to this statutory  mandate: 
to ensure that the  limited numbering resources  of the NANP  are 
used efficiently for the benefit of both consumers and  carriers; 
and to  ensure that  all carriers  have the  numbering  resources 
necessary to compete  in the  rapidly growing  telecommunications 
marketplace.1 The Commission recently adopted administrative  and 
technical measures that  facilitate the  monitoring of  numbering 
resource usage within the NANP and promote more efficient use  of 
numbering resources,  including  new  mandatory  utilization  and 
forecast  data  reporting  requirements.2  Monitoring  individual 
carriers' use of  numbering resources  encourages efficiency  and 
forestalls premature  exhaustion of  numbering resources.   Thus, 
section 52.15(f) of the Commission's rules requires U.S. carriers 
receiving numbering resources from  the North American  Numbering 
Plan  Administrator  (``NANPA''),  a  Pooling  Administrator,  or 
another telecommunications  carrier,  to report  semiannually  on 
their actual and forecast number  usage.3   These data are to  be 
reported on  FCC  Form 502,  the  North American  Numbering  Plan 
Numbering Resource Utilization/Forecast (``NRUF'') Report.  

The staff of  the Common Carrier  Bureau determined that  Fulltel 
apparently  did  not  file  the  mandatory  NRUF  report  due  on 
September 15, 2000.  On January 29, 2001, the Enforcement  Bureau 
sent a letter to Fulltel,  which explained that Fulltel might  be 
subject to enforcement action if it had failed to comply with the 
mandatory  reporting   requirements  of   section  52.15(f).   In 
addition, our  letter  cautioned  Fulltel that  the  NANPA  would 
withhold numbering resources as a sanction for failure or refusal 
to comply with the mandatory reporting requirements.4 

 Our  letter gave  Fulltel the  opportunity to  provide proof  of 
filing of the NRUF report due on September 15, 2000, and reminded 
Fulltel that its next  NRUF report was due  on February 1,  2001.  
Fulltel did not respond to our letter.5  



                       III.    DISCUSSION



Section 503(b)(1)(B)  of the  Act provides  that any  person  who 
willfully or  repeatedly fails  to  comply with  the Act  or  the 
Commission's rules shall be liable for a forfeiture penalty.6  We 
conclude that  Fulltel failed  to  file the  NRUF report  due  on 
September 15,  2000.  Thus,  Fulltel  is  apparently  liable  for 
forfeiture for  the willful  violation of  section 52.15  of  the 
Commission's rules,  which requires  U.S. carriers  to report  on 
their actual and forecast number usage.7  The Commission has held 
that an act or  omission is ``willful'' if  the violator knew  it 
was taking the action  in question, whether or  not there is  any 
intent to violate the rule.8 Based upon the record before us,  it 
appears that  Fulltel's  failure  to comply  with  the  reporting 
requirements was willful.

In assessing a forfeiture, Section  503(b)(2)(D) of the Act9  and 
section 1.80(b)(4)10  of the  Commission's  rules require  us  to 
consider the  nature, circumstances,  extent and  gravity of  the 
violation, and,  with  respect to  the  violator, the  degree  of 
culpability, any history of prior  offenses, ability to pay,  and 
other such  matters as  justice  may require.   The  Commission's 
Forfeiture Guidelines  establish  a  base amount  of  $3,000  for 
failure to file required forms or information.11  The  Guidelines 
also provide that we may issue  a higher or lower forfeiture,  as 
permitted by statute.12   Based upon the  information before  us, 
and taking into  consideration the factors  expressed in  Section 
503(b)(2)(D) of the Act, we find that a forfeiture that is higher 
than the base amount is warranted in this case.  

The Commission  has  emphasized  that  consistent,  accurate  and 
complete reporting  of number  utilization and  forecast data  is 
critical  to   promoting   efficiency  and   avoiding   premature 
exhaustion of numbering  resources.13 The potential  harm to  the 
integrity  and   objectives   of   the   Commission's   numbering 
administration  and  optimization   strategies  caused  by   non-
compliance  with  the  section  52.15(f)  reporting  requirements 
increases as  a non-compliant  carrier's inventory  of  numbering 
resources increases.  We therefore find that it is appropriate to 
take into account  the amount of  Fulltel's unreported  numbering 
resources  in  determining  the  forfeiture  amount.    Numbering 
resources  are  assigned  either  in  blocks  of  10,000  numbers 
referred to as central office codes or NXX codes, or in blocks of 
1,000 numbers.  Fulltel  has been assigned  12 NXX codes.   Under 
these circumstances, we  find that  an upward  adjustment of  the 
base forfeiture is appropriate for Fulltel's failure to file  the 
required NRUF  report, and  we thus  impose a  forfeiture in  the 
amount of $6,000 which represents double the base forfeiture  for 
failure to file required report.

Our January  29,  2001  letter reminded  Fulltel  that  its  next 
semiannual NRUF report was due  on February 1, 2001.  It  appears 
that Fulltel may not have filed this report.  Failure to file the 
February NRUF  report, as  required  by section  52.15(f),  would 
constitute a  separate violation  of the  Commission's rules.  We 
warn Fulltel that failure to  file the February report or  future 
reports could form the basis  for additional notices of  apparent 
liability. Moreover, if  Fulltel fails  to comply  with the  NRUF 
reporting requirements in the  future, the Common Carrier  Bureau 
may deem that its numbering resources are unused, and thus  begin 
reclamation of  those numbering  resources.14  In  addition,  the 
Commission may  consider proceedings  to revoke  the section  214 
authorizations and Title III licenses of carriers that persist in 
their non-compliance with section 52.15(f).

 

                      IV.  ORDERING CLAUSES


Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED THAT, pursuant to 47 U.S.C.   503(b), 
and 47 C.F.R.   1.80, Fulltel,  Inc. is hereby  NOTIFIED of  its 
APPARENT LIABILITY FOR A FORFEITURE in the amount of six thousand 
dollars  ($6,000)  for  violating  the  Commission's  rules  that 
require U.S. carriers to report actual and forecast number usage.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED THAT, pursuant to 47 C.F.R.  1.80,  within 
thirty days of this NOTICE  OF APPARENT LIABILITY, Fulltel,  Inc. 
SHALL PAY the  full amount  of the proposed  forfeiture or  SHALL 
FILE a written statement seeking reduction or cancellation of the 
proposed forfeiture.

Payment of  the forfeiture  may be  made by  mailing a  check  or 
similar  instrument,  payable  to   the  order  of  the   Federal 
Communications Commission, to the Forfeiture Collection  Section, 
Finance  Branch,  Federal  Communications  Commission,  P.O.  Box 
73482, Chicago, Illinois 60673-7482.  The payment should note the 
NAL/Acct. No. referenced above.

The response, if any, must be mailed to Charles W. Kelley, Chief, 
Investigations and Hearings Division, Enforcement Bureau, Federal 
Communications Commission,  445 12th  Street, S.W,  Room  3-B443, 
Washington DC  20554  and MUST  INCLUDE  the file  number  listed 
above.

The  Commission  will  not  consider  reducing  or  canceling   a 
forfeiture in response to a claim of inability to pay unless  the 
petitioner submits: (1) federal tax  returns for the most  recent 
three-year period; (2) financial statements prepared according to 
generally accepted accounting practices  (``GAAP''); or (3)  some 
other  reliable  and  objective  documentation  that   accurately 
reflects the petitioner's current financial status.  Any claim of 
inability to pay  must specifically  identify the  basis for  the 
claim by reference to the financial documentation submitted.

Requests for  payment  of  the  full amount  of  this  Notice  of 
Apparent Liability under an installment  plan should be sent  to: 
Chief, Revenue and Receivables Operations Group, 445 12th Street, 
S.W., Washington, D.C. 20554.  See 47 C.F.R.  1.1914.

Commission records indicate that Fulltel, Inc. apparently has not 
designated an  agent  for  service of  Commission  decisions,  as 
required by  47 C.F.R.   1.47(h).   Accordingly, IT  IS  FURTHER 
ORDERED that  a copy  of this  Notice of  Apparent Liability  for 
Forfeiture shall be posted in the Office of 
the Secretary.15  In addition, a  copy will be sent by  Certified 
Mail/Return Receipt Requested,  to Fulltel, Inc.,  210 Robert  S. 
Kerr, Oklahoma City, OK  73102.  

     

                         FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
                    

     

                         David H. Solomon
                         Chief, Enforcement Bureau


_________________________

1  Numbering Resource Optimization, Report and Order and Further 
Notice of Proposed Rulemaking  in CC Docket  No. 99-200, 15  FCC 
Rcd 7574  (2000)(``NRO  Order''); recon.  and  clarification  in 
part, Second Report  and Order, Order  on Reconsideration in  CC 
Docket 96-98 and CC Docket 99-200, and Second Further Notice  of 
Proposed Rulemaking in  CC Docket 99-200,  FCC 00-429 (Dec.  29, 
2000).  

2  Id.

3  The NRUF reports are  due on or before  February 1 and on  or 
before August  1 of  each year.   See 47  C.F.R.   52.15(f)(6).  
However, we note that the deadline for filing reports due August 
1, 2000 was extended to  September 15, 2000. Numbering  Resource 
Optimization, CC Docket No. 99-200, FCC 00-280 (Jul. 31, 2000).   

4  47 C.F.R.   52.25(g)(3)(iv).  See NRO Order,  15 FCC Rcd  at 
7609-10.   

5  The Enforcement Bureau mailed the January 29, 2001 letter  to 
Fulltel by certified mail, return receipt requested.  The return 
receipt reflects that  Fulltel received the  Bureau's letter  on 
February 5, 2001. 

6  47 U.S.C.  503(b)(1)(B).   See also 47 C.F.R.   1.80(a)(2).  
Recently, the Commission  amended Section 1.80  of its rules  to 
make inflation adjustments in the maximum penalties that may  be 
imposed.  Accordingly,  for  a common  carrier,  the  forfeiture 
limit for  each  violation  is  now  $120,000,  with  a  maximum 
potential forfeiture of  $1,200,000 for  a continuing  violation 
involving a  single act  or failure  to act.   See Amendment  of 
Section 1.80(b)  of the  Commission's Rules,  15 FCC  Rcd  18221 
(2000).   

7 Carriers are required to  file NRUF reports by separate  legal 
entity for  each Operating  Company  Number (``OCN'').   See  47 
C.F.R.    52.15(f)(3)(ii).    Our  January   29,  2001   letter 
referenced one OCN for which Fulltel apparently had not filed an 
NRUF report due September 15, 2000.

8  Southern  California Broadcasting  Company,  6 FCC  Rcd  4387 
(1991).   

9  47 U.S.C.  503(b)(2)(D).

10  47 C.F.R.   1.80(b)(4).  

11   The Commission's Forfeiture Policy Statement and  Amendment 
of Section  1.80  of the  Rules  to Incorporate  the  Forfeiture 
Guidelines, 12 FCC Rcd 17087  (1997), recon. denied, 15 FCC  Rcd 
303 (1999)(``Forfeiture  Guidelines'')(codified at  47 C.F.R.   
1.80(b)(4) Note).   

12  Id. 

13 NRO Order at 7593.

14 See NRO Order at 7678-7683.  

15  See 47 C.F.R.  1.47(h).