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

In the Matter of                  )
                                 )
Informal Complaints Filed By      )
Independent Payphone Service      )   File Nos. IC-98-42853, et 
Providers Against Various         )   al.
Local Exchange Carriers           )
Seeking Refunds Of End User       )
Common Line Charges               )

                        
                            ORDER 

   
Adopted:  December 22, 2004             Released: December 
22, 2004

By the Deputy Chief, Enforcement Bureau:

     1.   In this Order, we extend the deadline for 
       converting End User Common Line (``EUCL'') informal 
       complaints that are covered by the Common Carrier 
       Bureau's Order of September 10, 1999,1 into formal 
       complaints.2  In these informal complaints, 
       independent payphone providers (``IPPs'') allege that 
       the defendant local exchange carriers (``LECs'') 
       improperly assessed EUCL charges, in violation of the 
       Commission's rules and sections 201(b) and 202(a) of 
       the Communications Act, as amended (the ``Act'').3  
       In the First Waiver Order, the Common Carrier Bureau 
       determined that the period for converting the 
       informal complaints to formal complaints would be 
       extended to three months after a final nonappealable 
       order had been entered in a pending complaint 
       proceeding.4   For reasons of administrative 
       efficiency and to facilitate ongoing settlement 
       discussions, the Enforcement Bureau further extended 
       the deadline for conversion of these informal 
       complaints into formal complaints.5  Pursuant to the 
       most recent Enforcement Bureau order, informal 
       complaints were required to be converted by January 
       21, 2005, to benefit from the relation back rule 
       outlined in section 1.718.6  

     2.   On November 19, 2002, the Commission ruled on 
       certain liability issues in thirteen formal 
       complaints that raised many issues similar to those 
       raised in the pending informal complaints.7  The 
       parties to the thirteen formal complaints petitioned 
       the United States Court of Appeals for the District 
       of Columbia to review the Commission's Liability 
       Order,8 and on April 30, 2004, the Court issued an 
       opinion affirming in all respects the Commission's 
       Liability Order.9  We have been apprised that a 
       substantial number of informal complaints have 
       settled since the Court of Appeals decision and that 
       settlement negotiations are underway between numerous 
       informal complainants and defendant LECs at this 
       time.  Given the sheer number of informal complaints 
       pending, settlement of these claims necessarily is 
       quite time-consuming.  In order to ensure that all 
       parties have sufficient time to pursue an informal 
       resolution of these disputes prior to requiring the 
       filing of formal complaints with the Commission, and 
       for purposes of administrative efficiency, we now 
       extend until April 22, 2005 the filing deadline for 
       the conversion of these EUCL informal complaints into 
       formal complaints.  Because this extension will 
       facilitate the possible settlement of these numerous 
       claims and the efficient administration of this 
       docket, we are satisfied that our action today serves 
       the public interest.    

     3.   While we will continue to facilitate the informal 
       resolution of these cases, we expect to set a final 
       date for the conversion of any remaining claims in 
       the very near future and establish procedures for 
       such conversion.  Specifically, we intend to issue an 
       order by March 22, 2005 containing detailed (and, to 
       the extent possible, streamlined) procedures for 
       converting informal complaints into formal complaints 
       and establishing a final deadline for converting 
       informal complaints into formal complaints.  In 
       addition, that order will require each informal 
       complainant who has not yet settled its claim to 
       file, within 30 days of release of that order, a 
       notice of intent to convert its informal complaint 
       into a formal complaint.  Any informal complainant 
       who does not submit such notice shall waive its right 
       to convert its informal complaint into a formal 
       complaint.

     4.   ACCORDINGLY, IT IS ORDERED, pursuant to sections 
       4(i), 4(j), and 208 of the Communications Act, as 
       amended, 47 U.S.C.  154(i), 154(j), 208, section 
       1.3 of the Commission's rules, 47 C.F.R.  1.3, and 
       the authority delegated by sections 0.111 and 0.311 
       of the Commission's rules, 47 
    C.F.R.  0.111 and 0.311, that section 1.718(a) of the 
Commission's rules, 47 C.F.R.  1.718(a), IS HEREBY WAIVED, 
with regard to the IPP EUCL informal complaints described 
herein and the deadline for the conversion and filing of 
these informal complaints into formal complaints is hereby 
extended to April 22, 2005.  This waiver is effective as of 
the release of this Order. 



                              FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS 
                         COMMISSION



                              Christopher N. Olsen
                              Deputy Chief, Enforcement 
                         Bureau

_________________________

1 Informal Complaints Filed By Independent Payphone Service 
Providers Against  Various Local Exchange  Carriers Seeking 
Refunds of End User Common  Line Charges, Order, 16 FCC Rcd 
3669 (CCB 1999) (``First Waiver Order'').      

2  Ordinarily,   section  1.718  requires  that   a  formal 
complaint must be filed within  six months of the carrier's 
response to the informal  complaint if the formal complaint 
is to relate back to  the filing of the informal complaint.  
See 47 C.F.R.  1.718(a).

3 47 U.S.C.  201(b) and 202(a); 47 C.F.R.  69.1 et seq.

4 See First Waiver Order, 16 FCC Rcd at 3672,  8.  A final 
nonappealable order  has been  entered in  that proceeding.  
See Verizon  Telephone Companies, et  al. v. FCC,  269 F.3d 
1098 (D.C. Cir. 2001).

5  See Informal  Complaints Filed  By Independent  Payphone 
Service Providers  Against Various Local  Exchange Carriers 
Seeking Refunds of End User  Common Line Charges, Order, 17 
FCC Rcd 2115 (EB  2002) (``Second Waiver Order''); Informal 
Complaints Filed By  Independent Payphone Service Providers 
Against Various Local Exchange  Carriers Seeking Refunds of 
End User Common  Line Charges, Order, 17 FCC  Rcd 14759 (EB 
2002) (``Third  Waiver Order''); Informal  Complaints Filed 
By Independent  Payphone Service Providers  Against Various 
Local Exchange Carriers Seeking  Refunds of End User Common 
Line Charges, Order,  18 FCC Rcd 12047  (EB 2003) (``Fourth 
Waiver Order'');  Informal Complaints Filed  By Independent 
Payphone Service  Providers Against Various  Local Exchange 
Carriers Seeking  Refunds of End User  Common Line Charges, 
Order, 19 FCC Rcd 9066  (EB 2004) (``Fifth Waiver Order''); 
Informal Complaints  Filed By Independent  Payphone Service 
Providers Against  Various Local Exchange  Carriers Seeking 
Refunds of  End User  Common Line  Charges, Order,  2004 WL 
2222295, File Nos. IC-98-42853, et  al., DA No. 04-3167 (EB 
Rel. Oct. 4, 2004) (``Sixth Waiver Order'').

6 Sixth Waiver Order, 2004 WL 2222295 (EB 2004).

7 See Communications Vending  Corporation of Arizona, Inc., 
et al.  v. Citizens  Communications Company  f/k/a Citizens 
Utility  Company  and Citizens  Telecommunications  Company 
d/b/a  Citizens Telecom,  et  al.,  Memorandum Opinion  and 
Order, 17 FCC Rcd 24201 (2002) (``Liability Order'').

8 Communications  Vending Corporation of Arizona,  Inc., et 
al. v. FCC, et. al., No. 02-1364, consolidated with No. 03-
1010,  03-1012 (D.C.  Cir. filed  Nov. 26,  2002, Jan.  14, 
2003, Jan. 17, 2003).

9  Communications Vending Corporation  of Arizona, Inc., et 
al. v.  Federal Communications Commission, et  al., No. 02-
1364, 2004 WL 911769 (D.C. Cir. Apr. 30, 2004).