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1. Before the
Federal Communications Commission
Washington, D.C. 20554
In the Matter of )
VANGUARD CELLULAR SYSTEMS, INC. ) File No. EB-01-IH-0017t
) NAL/Acct. No. 200132080051
) FRN No. 0006798052
Adopted: February 26, 2003 Released: February 28,
By the Chief, Enforcement Bureau:
In this Order, we issue a monetary forfeiture against Vanguard
Cellular Systems, Inc. (``Vanguard'') for willful violation of 47
C.F.R. § 52.15(f). The noted violation involves Vanguard's
failure to report its number utilization and forecast data.
Based upon our review of the facts and circumstances of this
case, including the response to our Notice of Apparent Liability
(``NAL''),1 we conclude that a reduction of the proposed
forfeiture is warranted and that Vanguard is liable for a
forfeiture in the amount of $3,000.
On April 24, 2001, the Chief, Enforcement Bureau, acting pursuant
to delegated authority, issued an NAL to Vanguard, proposing a
$9,000 forfeiture. We issued the NAL because it appeared that
Vanguard had failed to report on its actual and forecast number
usage by filing FCC Form 502, the North American Numbering Plan
Numbering Resource Utilization/Forecast (``NRUF'') Report that
was due on September 15, 2000.2 Carriers are required to report
for each separate legal entity represented by an Operating
Company Number (`OCN'').3 It appeared that Vanguard failed to
file an NRUF report for two OCNs - 6383 and 6384-- which were
referenced in our NAL. We therefore determined that Vanguard had
apparently violated section 52.15(f) of the Commission's rules,
which 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.4
AT&T Wireless Services, Inc. (``AWS''), which is Vanguard's
parent company, responded to the NAL, and requests cancellation
of the forfeiture. AWS states that it acquired Vanguard in 1999.
In addition, Vanguard remains a wholly-owned subsidiary of AWS.
Thereafter, AWS requested the transfer of all numbering resources
associated with OCN 6383 and thus did not file a report due
September 15, 2000 for this OCN. Instead, AWS asserts that it
included utilization and forecast data for all but five of the
NXX codes formerly assigned to OCN 6383 in AWS's NRUF report.5
AWS argues that the failure to include forecast and utilization
data for these codes did not significantly affect the accuracy of
its NRUF reports. Additionally, AWS asserts that no NRUF report
was filed for OCN 6384 because Vanguard no longer held the
numbering resources assigned to this OCN at the time that AWS
The NAL states that the proposed forfeiture was assessed in
accordance with applicable statutory provisions, the Commission's
rules and the Commission's Forfeiture Guidelines.6 Section
503(b) of the Act requires that, in examining the response, we
take into account 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.7 Although AWS and
Vanguard have not justified cancellation of the forfeiture, we
find that a reduction of the forfeiture amount is warranted.
Carriers were required to include utilization and forecast data
for the period between January 1, 2000 and June 30, 2000 in the
semiannual NRUF report due September 15, 2000.8 We find that AWS
was not responsible for reporting numbering resources associated
with OCN 6384, which had been acquired by another entity prior to
its acquisition of Vanguard. However, even though AWS requested
transfer of numbering resources associated with Vanguard's OCN
6383 prior to the close of the reporting period, the transfer of
some of the NXX codes did not become effective until after the
relevant reporting period had closed. Nevertheless, with the
exception of five NXX codes, AWS reported the numbering resources
formerly assigned to Vanguard in its September 15, 2000 NRUF.
Under these circumstances, we find that AWS's submission does
demonstrate a good faith attempt to comply with the NRUF filing
requirement. We therefore conclude that a reduction of the
forfeiture amount is warranted.9 We have reviewed the response
in light of the statutory factors set forth above, and find that
AWS and Vanguard have justified a reduction of the proposed
forfeiture penalty from $9,000 to $3,000.
IV. ORDERING CLAUSES
Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED, pursuant to 47 U.S.C. § 503(b), and
47 C.F.R. § 0.111, 0.311 and 1.80, that Vanguard Cellular
Systems, Inc., FORFEIT to the United States the sum of three
thousand dollars ($3,000) for willfully violating the
Commission's rules that require U.S. carriers to report actual
and forecast number usage.
Payment of the forfeiture may be made by mailing a check or money
order, 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, within 30 days of the release of this
Forfeiture Order.10 The payment MUST INCLUDE the FCC
Registration Number (FRN) referenced above and should note the
NAL/Acct. No. referenced above. If the forfeiture is not paid
within the period specified, the case may be referred to the
Department of Justice for collection pursuant to 47 U.S.C. § 504.
A request for payment of the full amount of this Forfeiture Order
under an installment plan should be sent to: Chief, Revenue and
Receivables Operations Group, 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington,
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that a copy of this Forfeiture Order shall
be sent by Certified Mail/Return Receipt Requested, to Douglas I.
Brandon, Vice President- External Affairs & Law, AT&T Wireless
Services, Inc., Fourth Floor, 1150 Connecticut Avenue, N.W.,
Washington, DC 20036.
FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION
David H. Solomon
Chief, Enforcement Bureau
1 See Vanguard Cellular Systems, Inc., 16 FCC Rcd 8679 (EB
2 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, 15 FCC Rcd 17005 (2000).
3 See 47 C.F.R. § 52.15(f)(3)(ii).
4 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, 16 FCC Rcd 306 (
2000)(``NRO Recon. Order'').
5 Numbering resources assigned in blocks of 10,000 numbers are
referred to as central office codes or NXX codes.
6 47 U.S.C. § 503(b); 47 C.F.R. § 1.80; 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).
7 47 C.F.R. § 503(b)(2)(D).
8 47 C.F.R. § 52.15(f)(6)(i).
9 See, e.g., Data Investments, Inc.,16 FCC Rcd 7905 (EB 2001).
10 See 47 C.F.R. § 1.80(h).
11 See 47 C.F.R. § 1.1914.