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Common Carrier Bureau:
A Progress Report One Year After Enactment of the
Telecommunications Act of 1996

Over the past year, the Common Carrier Bureau (CCB) has had primary responsibility for implementing many of the key provisions of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (the 1996 Act), including those designed to open the local and long distance telephone markets to competition throughout the country. It also handled dozens of complex proceedings in addition to those required by the 1996 Act. At the same time the Bureau has been working to promote competition in the telecommunication sector of our national economy, it has also been re-inventing how it does business.

The Bureau recognizes that consumers are major stakeholders in the FCC's rulemaking process and has taken steps to ensure that their views are heard and that their interests are protected. In the past year, the Bureau has streamlined many of its filing processes and has held several public meetings and fora to discuss a broad range of issues, including many raised by the 1996 Act.

The following is a list, ordered by Docket Number, of the major proceedings on which the Bureau worked in 1996.

Hearing Aid Compatibility (CC Docket No. 87-124)

On July 3, 1996, the Commission adopted an Order that will increase access by millions of Americans with hearing disabilities to telephones in workplaces, nursing homes, hospitals, and hotels and motels based on a certain timeline. The rules adopted in the Order were based on recommendations from the Hearing Aid Compatibility Negotiated Rulemaking Committee and represented the culmination of an innovative approach to rulemaking. The Order addressed the needs of telephone users with hearing disabilities, while minimizing the compliance burden on businesses. In addition, the Order stated that telephones that are newly acquired or are replacement telephones eventually will have volume control features. The Commission exempted workplaces with fewer than 15 employees from these obligations except for telephones provided directly to employees with hearing disabilities, and determined that no testing or retrofitting of existing workplace telephones is required. In 1997, the Commission will issue educational materials for consumers and manufacturers to enhance public awareness of hearing aid compatibility requirements.

Telecommunications Relay Services for People with Hearing and Speech Disabilities (CC Docket No. 90-571)

On January 14, 1997, the Commission issued a Notice of Inquiry(NOI) to gather comments on the effectiveness of the current Telecommunications Relay Services (TRS) program and on how the TRS program can be improved to bring more telecommunications service to people with disabilities. The 1996 Act requires carriers to develop telecommunications networks that are accessible to people with hearing and speech disabilities. In the NOI, the Commission also sought comment on the feasibility and costs of providing improved forms of TRS, including Video Relay Interpreting (VRI), speech-to-speech relay services, and multilingual relay services.

Implementation of the Local Competition Provisions of the 1996 Act -- the North American Numbering Council (NANC) (CC Docket No. 92-237)

On August 8, 1996, the Commission adopted a Second Report and Order and Memorandum Opinion and Order that took the steps necessary to ensure fair and impartial access to

numbering resources for all communications carriers. In the Order, the Commission recognized that numbering is a critical component of encouraging a robustly competitive telecommunications market in the United States. The 1996 Act requires the Commission to designate one or more impartial entities to administer telecommunications numbering and to make such numbers available on an equitable basis. The North American Numbering Council (NANC) is responsible for advising the Commission and other North American Numbering Plan (NANP) member countries on issues related to NANP administration, and to advise the Commission on other numbering issues, including local number portability administration in the United States. Among other tasks, the NANC must recommend to the Commission a new neutral NANP Administrator and one or more neutral Local Number Portability Administrators (LNPAs).

888 Toll Free Number Deployment (CC Docket No. 95-155)

On January 25, 1996, CCB adopted a Report and Order resolving several 888 implementation issues. The Bureau's actions ensured that toll free numbers were available to the public at all times and that the procedures for acquiring toll free numbers were orderly and efficient. Among other actions, the Bureau stated that Responsible Organizations should poll their 800 subscribers to identify those numbers subscribers might want replicated in 888, and that Database Service Management, Inc., the manager of the toll free number database, should place these numbers in "unavailable" status pending the Commission's resolution of the issue of whether 800 subscribers with "vanity" numbers should be afforded any protection with regard to those numbers. The Bureau concluded that there would be early reservation procedures for all 888 numbers not in "unavailable" status, and that a "first come, first served" reservation policy would be simple, efficient, and less expensive to administer than other reservation schemes. The Bureau concluded that the continuation of a modified 800 conservation plan and the adoption of an 888 conservation plan would serve the public interest.

Implementation of the Local Competition Provisions -- Classic Telephone Inc.

(CCB Pol. No. 96-10)

On October 1, 1996, the Commission adopted an Order that, pursuant to section 253 of the Communications Act, as amended by the 1996 Act, overturns the decisions of Hill City and Bogue, Kansas denying Classic Telephone Inc.'s application for a local franchise to provide local telecommunications service. The Commission concluded that these franchise denials violated Section 253. This Order was the Commission's first exercise of authority granted to it pursuant to Section 253 of the Act.

New England Public Communications Council's Payphone Preemption

(CCB Pol. No. 96-20)

On December 10, 1996, in its second exercise of its preemption authority under Section 253 of the Communications Act, as amended by the 1996 Act, the Commission overturned a decision by the Connecticut Department of Public Utility Control (CTPUC) that prohibited independent payphone providers and non-local exchange carriers (LECs) from offering payphone service in the state of Connecticut. The Commission's decision granted the Petition for Preemption filed by the New England Public Communications Council and concluded that Connecticut's decision to prohibit independent payphone providers and non-LECs from providing payphone service in Connecticut is inconsistent with the pro-competition policies of the Telecommunications Act of 1996.

Bell Operating Company (BOC) Entry into Out-of-Region InterLATA Services (CC Docket No. 96-21)

On July 1, 1996, the Commission adopted an Order that relaxed the regulatory treatment for the Bell Operating Companies that provide domestic, out-of-region long distance services through an affiliate that complies with certain safeguards. The Commission decided, on an interim basis, to remove dominant carrier regulation for those BOCs providing out-of-region interLATA services through separate affiliates satisfying the Competitive Carrier Fifth Report and Order separation requirements. Pursuant to the July Order, BOC interexchange affiliates are treated as nonregulated affiliates under the Commission's joint cost and affiliate transactions rules for the purposes of BOC accounting. This interim measure will enable BOCs to begin competing in the interexchange market, outside of their region, on a non-dominant basis and will remain in effect at least until completion of the Commission's Interstate, Interexchange Marketplace proceeding regarding the regulatory treatment of LEC provision of interexchange services originating outside the LEC's local exchange area.

Revision of Filing Requirements (CC Docket No. 96-23)

On November 13, 1996, the Common Carrier Bureau adopted an Order, on delegated authority that eliminated or significantly reduced reporting requirements imposed on communication common carriers by Commission rules. As a result of this action, thirteen reporting requirements have been eliminated, and the frequency of filing of four other reports has been reduced. This Order furthers the Commission's on-going commitment to eliminate unnecessary and burdensome regulations and requirements.

Universal Service Recommended Decision (CC Docket No. 96-45)

On November 8, 1996, the Universal Service Federal-State Joint Board released its Recommended Decision implementing the universal service provisions of the 1996 Act. In the Recommended Decision, the Joint Board, pursuant to section 254 of the Communications Act, as amended by the 1996 Act, took the necessary steps to devise rules and policies to create an effective universal service support system to ensure that Congress' goals of affordable service and access to advanced services are met by means that enhance, rather than distort, competition. The Joint Board's recommendations are intended to ensure that affordable quality telecommunications services are available to all consumers, including low-income consumers, in all regions of the nation, including rural, insular, and high cost areas. Consistent with the 1996 Act, the Recommended Decision concludes that rural health care providers should have access to telecommunications services at rates comparable to those in urban areas and that libraries and elementary and secondary schools should be able to purchase telecommunications services at discounted rates. In addition, as required by the 1996 Act, the Recommended Decision concluded that universal service support mechanisms should be explicit, specific, predictable, and sufficient to preserve and advance universal service and should be supported by equitable and nondiscriminatory contributions by all telecommunications carriers that provide interstate telecommunications services.

Interstate, Interexchange Marketplace (CC Docket No. 96-61)

On March 25, 1996, the Commission released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that proposed that non-dominant interexchange carriers should no longer file tariffs. The proposed rules would allow carriers to change prices or offer new services without first filing with the Commission and would lead to a more competitive marketplace.

On October 29, 1996, the Commission adopted an Order in which it exercised its new forbearance authority by ruling that non-dominant interexchange carriers would no longer be required to file tariffs for their interstate domestic long distance services. The Commission determined that after a nine-month transition period, relationships between nondominant interexchange carriers and their customers will be set by contract. The Commission's decision to exercise its new forbearance authority in this manner will advance the pro-competitive and deregulatory objectives of the 1996 Act by fostering increased competition in the long distance market. This decision marked the end of the transformation of the regulatory regime governing interstate, domestic, interexchange services from one in which all interexchange carriers were subject to a broad range of pricing and other regulatory requirements to one that relies on market forces. After detariffing is implemented, nondominant long distance companies will be subject to the same incentives and rewards as competitors in other unregulated markets.

Geographic Rate Averaging and Rate Integration (CC Docket No. 96-91)

On August 7, 1996, the Commission adopted an Order implementing the geographic rate averaging and rate integration requirements of Section 254(g) of the Communications Act, as amended by the 1996 Act. Geographic rate averaging refers to the practice of charging customers the same rates for equivalent long distance service regardless of geographic location. Consistent with the 1996 Act, the Commission's geographic rate averaging decision requires that rates charged by a long distance provider to subscribers in rural and high cost areas shall be no higher than the rates charged to its subscribers in urban areas. In addition, based on recommendations from the Guam/Northern Mariana Working Group, the Commission concluded that long distance carriers providing service to Guam, the Northern Marianas, and American Samoa must achieve rate integration for those points by August 1, 1997. The Commission directed those carriers to submit preliminary plans for rate integration by February 1, 1997, and final plans, including proposed rates, by June 1, 1997.

Implementation of the Local Competition Provisions of the 1996 Act -- Interconnection

(CC Docket No. 96-98)

On August 8, 1996, the Commission adopted a First Report and Order implementing Section 251 of the Communications Act, as amended by the 1996 Act, which requires local exchange carriers to open their networks to competition. The 1996 Act requires incumbent local exchange carriers to provide interconnection with other telecommunications carriers and to offer unbundled network elements at rates, terms, and conditions that are just, reasonable, and nondiscriminatory. The Commission prescribed certain minimum points of interconnection necessary to permit competing carriers to choose the most efficient points at which to interconnect with the incumbent LEC's network. The Commission also adopted a minimum list of unbundled network elements that incumbent LECs must make available to new entrants, upon request. Additionally, the Commission adopted regulations concerning pricing standards for interconnection and access to unbundled network elements, resale services at wholesale rates, and transport and termination.

Implementation of the Local Competition Provision of the 1996 Act -- Numbering

(CC Docket No. 96-98, 95-185, 92-237)

On August 8, 1996, the Commission adopted a Second Report and Order in this docket implementing the dialing parity, non-discriminatory access, network disclosure and numbering administration requirements of the 1996 Act. In this Order, the Commission took the steps necessary to ensure that the dialing, telephone numbers, operator services, directory assistance, and directory listings -- all components of the existing telephone network -- be made available to all competitors on an equal basis.

Reconsideration of Two Interconnection Rules (CC Docket No. 96-98, 95-185)

On September 27, 1996, the Commission released a decision that reconsidered two issues addressed in its Interconnection Order. First, the Commission established a flat-rated default proxy range for the non-traffic sensitive costs of basic residential and business line ports associated with the unbundled local switching element. Second, the Commission clarified that, because its Interconnection Order concluded that the local switching element includes dedicated facilities, a requesting carrier is effectively precluded from using unbundled switching to substitute for switched access services where the loop is used to provide both exchange access to the requesting carrier and local service by the incumbent local exchange carrier.

Operational Support Systems Reconsideration Order (CC Docket No. 96-98; 95-185)

On December 13, 1996, the Commission adopted an Order on Reconsideration clarifying its earlier decision that requires those incumbent local exchange carriers subject to Section 251(c) of the Communications Act, as amended by the 1996 Act, to provide access to their operation support systems (OSS) functions. OSS consists of preordering, ordering, provisioning, maintenance and repair, and billing functions. In its Interconnection Order, released on August 8, 1996, the Commission required incumbent LECs subject to section 251(c) to offer access to OSS functions as unbundled network elements no later than January 1, 1997. The Commission concluded in the Interconnection Order that incumbent LECs are required to provide access to OSS functions pursuant to their obligations to provide access to unbundled elements under section 251(c)(3), as well as their obligation to provide access on a nondiscriminatory basis to all unbundled network elements and services made available for resale, under sections 251(c)(3) and (c)(4). In this Order on Reconsideration, the Commission rejected requests to postpone the date by which access to OSS functions must be offered, and clarified the obligations of incumbent LECs subject to Section 251(c) with respect to access to OSS functions.

Cost Allocations For NonRegulated Services (CC Docket No. 96-112)

On May 10, 1996, the Commission released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking addressing the way incumbent local exchange carriers are to allocate the costs of network plant used to provide both regulated telecommunications services and non-regulated services, including non-regulated video programming services, consistent with the 1996 Act. In the NPRM, the Commission addressed the allocation of loop plant for which costs are traffic insensitive.

Customer Proprietary Network Information (CPNI) (CC Docket No. 96-115)

On May 17, 1996, the Commission released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking initiating a proceeding to interpret and clarify Section 222 of the Communications Act, as amended by the 1996 Act, which governs the use of telecommunications customer information. In the NPRM, the Commission took steps to respond to issues raised by the telecommunications industry about the customer proprietary network information (CPNI) provision of the new law. The Commission sought comment on the appropriate interpretation of the term "telecommunications service" as it applies to CPNI under the new law. The Commission also asked for comment on whether the statute permits carriers to obtain oral approval from customers for use of their CPNI for purposes other than those specifically set out in Section 222 of the 1996 Act, or whether such approval must be in writing. The NPRM further sought comment on how to ensure that subscriber list information is provided in accordance with the statutory requirements and asked commenters to address the costs and benefits of any rules it might adopt.

Number Portability (CC Docket No. 96-116)

On June 27, 1996, the Commission adopted an Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (FNPRM) on local number portability. The Order addressed implementation of Section 251(b)(2) of the Communications Act, as amended by the 1996 Act, which requires local telephone companies to permit both residential and business consumers to keep their telephone numbers when they switch from one local carrier to another. In the Order, the Commission adopted rules governing number portability that will remove significant impediments to the development of competition in the local exchange markets. Pursuant to the 1996 Act, the Commission ordered all local exchange carriers to provide number portability under a phased deployment schedule in the top 100 MSAs and upon request in other areas. In addition, rather than mandating a particular technology for the provision of long-term number portability, the Commission assumed a flexible, technology-neutral approach by establishing performance criteria that any long-term portability method selected by a LEC must meet. The FNPRM sought comment on the requirement of Section 251(e)(2) of the Act that the cost of establishing number portability shall be borne by all telecommunications carriers on a competitively neutral basis as determined by the Commission. The FNPRM set out tentative conclusions regarding the types of costs involved in long-term portability, the method of allocation of those costs among all telecommunications carriers on a competitively neutral basis, and the recovery of those costs from other carriers and consumers.

PayPhone Service Reform (CC Docket No. 96-128)

On September 20, 1996, the Commission adopted a Report and Order to implement Section 276 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended by the 1996 Act, to open the door to a deregulatory and streamlined structure for the payphone industry that will allow market-based incentives to determine industry decisions. This Order satisfies the goals of Section 276 of the 1996 Act through encouraging the widespread deployment of payphone service to the benefit of the public. In its Order, the Commission adopted rules and policies governing the payphone industry that: (1) establish a plan to ensure fair compensation for each and every completed intrastate and interstate call using [a] payphone;(2) discontinue intrastate and interstate carrier access charge payphone service elements and payments, as well as and intrastate and interstate payphone subsidies from basic exchange services; (3) prescribe nonstructural safeguards for Bell Operating Company (BOC) payphones; (4) permit the BOCs to negotiate with payphone location providers on the interLATA carrier presubscribed to their payphones; (5) permit all payphone service providers to negotiate with location providers on the intraLATA carrier presubscribed to their payphones; and (6) adopt guidelines for use by the states in establishing public interest payphones to be located where there would otherwise not be a payphone.

Interstate Pay-Per-Call and Other Information Services (CC Docket No. 96-146)

On July 11, 1996, the Commission adopted an Order that will amend the Commission's rules consistent with the 1996 Act and protect consumers from unknowingly being charged for calls made to toll-free numbers. The 1996 Act amended Section 228 of the Communications Act of 1934 to create new restrictions on the use of toll-free numbers to charge callers for information services. The 1996 Act also repealed the statutory exemption to pay-per-call status that the Telephone Disclosure and Dispute Resolution Act (TDDRA) conferred on any service provided pursuant to tariff. The new rules prohibit charging callers to toll free numbers for provision of information services unless the caller has agreed in writing to be charged, or has paid for the service through direct remittance, pre-paid account, or debit, credit, or calling card. The Commission amended its pay-per-call rules to reflect the provisions of the 1996 Act. In addition, in the NPRM the Commission proposed rule changes intended to protect against evasion of the new statutory requirements and ensure that consumers are protected from abuses involving information services which either are provided through toll free numbers or are ostensibly free but billed to consumers at inflated tariffed rates.

Non-Accounting Safeguards of Sections 271 and 272 and Regulatory Treatment of LEC Provision of Interexchange Services Originating in the LEC's Local Exchange Area (CC Docket No. 96-149)

On December 24, 1996, the Commission adopted an Order implementing the non-accounting structural separations and non-discrimination requirements of section 272 of the 1996 Act. The 1996 Act conditions the BOCs' entry into the market for in-region interLATA services on their compliance with certain statutory accounting and non-accounting safeguards. In enacting Section 272, Congress imposed a series of separate affiliate and nondiscrimination requirements applicable to the BOCs' provision of certain new services and their engagement in certain new activities that are designed, in the absence of full competition in the local exchange marketplace, to prohibit anticompetitive discrimination and improper cost-allocation while still giving consumers the benefit of competition.

Accounting Safeguards of Section 260 and 271 through 276 (CC Docket No. 96-150)

On December 24, 1996, the Commission adopted an Order implementing the accounting safeguards of Sections 260 and 271 through 276 of the Communications Act, as amended by the 1996 Act. Congress required these safeguards in the 1996 Act both: (1) to ensure that subscribers of regulated non-competitive telecommunications services do not subsidize incumbent local exchange carrier provision of competitive services, and to (2) promote competition by preventing incumbent LECs from using their market power in local exchange services to obtain an anti-competitive advantage in the provision of other services.

Tariff Streamlining Provisions for Local Exchange Carriers (CC Docket No. 96-187)

On January 31, 1997, the Commission adopted an Order that streamlines the tariff review process for local exchange carriers. The 1996 Act provides that a tariff reflecting a reduction in rates would become effective seven days from the date of filing and a tariff reflecting an increase in rates would become effective in fifteen days from the filing date. The Order also established an electronic tariff filing program that would allow a quick and economical means to file tariffs while giving interested parties prompt access to the tariffs.

Tariff Streamlining Provisions for Local Exchange Carriers (CC Docket No. 96-187)

On September 16, 1996, the Commission released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking proposing to implement the specific streamlining requirements of Section 402(b)(1)(A) of the 1996 Act. Section 402 of the 1996 Act amends section 204(a)(3) of the Communications Act of 1934 to provide that local exchange carriers may file with the Commission a new or revised charge, classification, regulation, or practice on a streamlined basis. The NPRM sought comment on, among other things, what impact the LEC tariff streamlining provisions have on the existing statutory scheme for tariffing of interstate common carrier services, what the effect is of LEC tariffs being "deemed lawful," and what LEC tariffs will be eligible for filing on a streamlined basis. The Commission also sought comment on what additional measures could be taken to achieve more fully a streamlined administration of LEC tariffs. Among these additional steps, the Commission proposed to establish a program of electronic tariff filing that will permit carriers to file, and the public to access, tariffs by means of dial-up "on-line" access.

Regulatory Reform (CC Docket No. 96-193)

On September 12, 1996, the Commission adopted an Order and released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking reforming the filing requirements and carrier classifications pursuant to the 1996 Act. As required by the 1996 Act, FCC rules were modified to require only annual ARMIS reports and annual cost allocation manual revisions, eliminating the more frequent filings previously required. Because the 1996 Act did not specify how the Commission should measure inflation in adjusting references to carrier revenues, the Commission adopted interim rules to adjust those references for inflation using a generally available inflation index. In addition, the NPRM was initiated to consider additional modifications to FCC rules, including whether the 60-day advance notice requirement for certain cost allocation manual revisions should be modified or eliminated, as well as which inflation measure should be incorporated into FCC rules pertaining to carrier classification and reporting requirements.

Implementation of Infrastructure Sharing Provisions of the 1996 Act

(CC Docket No. 96-237)

On November 22, 1996, the Commission released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking implementing Section 259, the infrastructure sharing provision added to the Communications Act by the 1996 Act. Section 259 requires the Commission to adopt regulations to ensure that incumbent local exchange carriers make available to "qualifying carriers" certain public switched network infrastructure, technology, information, and telecommunications facilities and functions. Section 259 is intended to allow qualifying carriers to provide telecommunications and information services in areas where they are eligible for universal service support. In the NPRM, the Commission sought comment on the scope of required infrastructure sharing, the specific directives that Congress imposed on the Commission regarding terms and conditions for infrastructure sharing, and the definition of qualifying carriers.

Streamlining the Formal Complaints Process (CC Docket No. 96-238)

On November 26, 1996, the Commission released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that proposed to improve the speed, effectiveness, and efficiency of its enforcement procedures pursuant to the 1996 Act. In the NPRM, the Commission prescribed streamlining the formal complaint filing process, encouraging parties to narrow topics of dispute and developing methods for improving the quality and content of parties' filings. In addition, the Commission tentatively concluded that the pro-competitive goals and policies of the 1996 Act would be enhanced by applying the proposals in the NPRM to all formal complaints filed with the Commission, not just those enumerated in the 1996 Act.

Commission Seeks Comment on Telecommunications Equipment and Customer Premises Equipment By Persons with Disabilities (CC Docket No. 96-328)

On September 19, 1996, the Commission issued a Notice of Inquiry (NOI) as a first step in its implementation of Section 255 of the Communications Act. In the NOI, the Commission sought comment on the most effective method of working with the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board (Access Board) to determine what customer premises equipment is necessary to ensure that service is accessible and useable by individuals with disabilities. The Commission also sought comment on certain enforcement and jurisdictional issues.

Access Charge Reform NPRM, Notice of Inquiry, and Price Cap Third Report and Order (FCC 96-488)

On December 24, 1996, the Commission released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, Notice of Inquiry and Third Report and Order which began a review of the system of interstate access charges. The Commission initiated this access charge reform proceeding to establish a system compatible with the pro-competitive deregulatory framework established by the 1996 Act and state actions to open local networks to competition. In the NPRM, the Commission sought comment on several approaches for access reform: a market-based approach, a prescriptive approach, or some combination of the two approaches. The Commission proposed that, regardless of the approach adopted for access reform, the overriding goal is the same -- to adopt policies that will foster competition for telecommunication services and eventually enable market forces to eliminate the need for price regulation. In the NOI, the Commission sought comment on whether it should, in addition to access charge reform, consider actions relating to interstate information services and the Internet. The NOI addressed the concerns raised over congestion on the public switched network and the Commission sought comment on how it can most effectively create incentives for the deployment of services and facilities that would permit more efficient transport of data traffic. Finally, in the Third Report and Order, the Commission adopted two revisions proposed in the Price Cap Second Further Notice in 1995: elimination of the price cap lower service band indices and the requirements necessary for the introduction of new services.

Elimination of Section 214 Applications for Extension of Lines (CC Docket No. 97-11)

On January 13, 1997, the Commission released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking which concluded that carriers would no longer be required to seek Section 214 approval from the Commission before expanding phone services to consumers within any new geographic area that they are otherwise eligible to serve. Previously, carriers were required under Section 214 of the Communications Act of 1934 to obtain Commission certification that the extension was consistent with the public convenience and necessity. Congress exempted carriers from the line extension requirements of Section 214 when they adopted Section 402(b)(2)(A) of the 1996 Act. In the NPRM, the Commission also proposed to forbear from applying any remaining Section 214 authority to carriers who may be subject to price-cap regulation, average schedule carriers, and domestic, non-dominant carriers offering local or long-distance services.


Long Distance Market Share Reports

On July 12, 1996, the Commission released the first quarter report tracking long distance market shares. The report covers toll revenues earned by long distance carriers since 1984 and tracks average revenues per minute. In addition to information on revenues, the report contains information on switched access minutes and presubscribed lines. The Second Quarterly Report on Long Distance Market Shares was released on September 27, 1996

Report on Preliminary Domestic Information from Statistics of Communications Common Carriers

On July 11, 1996, the Commission released a compilation of financial and operating data concerning domestic communications carriers for the year ending December 31, 1995. This report cites the work of academics, consultants and other researchers in the field of telecommunications and is based on the annual reports submitted to the Commission by domestic telecommunications carriers.

Telephone Lines and Offices Converted to Equal Access

On June 24, 1996, the Common Carrier Bureau released the Telephone Lines and Offices Converted to Equal Access Report that summarizes equal access conversion from 1984 through December 31, 1995. Consumers who subscribe to equal access are able to place long distance calls using their long distance carrier without having to dial a special code. The report contains historical data on the number of lines converted to equal access since 1984 and provides a state-by-state breakdown of the local exchange carriers and their lines with and without equal access for 1995.

Telephone Subscribership Report

On June 25, 1996, the Commission released the latest report on telephone subscribership levels in the United States. The report tracks subscribership statistics based on a survey conducted by the Census Bureau and estimated that 93.8% of all households in the U.S. had telephone service. The Report also shows different subscribership levels by state, income level, race, age, household size and employment status. The second Telephone Subscribership Report was released on September 18, 1996.

Common Carrier Bureau Scorecard

On December 10, 1996, the Common Carrier Bureau released the second edition of the Scorecard. This report is a compilation of comparative complaint statistics that the public can use to make informed decisions about telephone related services. The Scorecard follows trends in consumer complaints and inquiries filed at the Commission and emphasizes the highest categories of consumer complaints.

Telecommunications Industry Revenue: TRS Fund Worksheet Data

The Commission released its Telecommunications Industry Revenue Report on December 31, 1996. In the report, the Commission reported that the U.S. telecommunications industry reported $199.0 billion in revenue for 1995; which represents and increase of 8.8 percent from the $183.2 billion reported in 1994. The report also estimates the average price of a directly dialed call and provides revenue summaries for local carriers, cellular, PCS, paging and mobile, and competitive access service providers.

Long Distance Carrier Code Assignments

On October 18, 1996, the Commission released the latest available information on Carrier Identification Codes (CICs), 500 service, 555 line number assignments, toll-free 800 and 888 service and 900 service. CICs are used by carriers when routing calls, as well as for accounting and billing purposes. CICs are also used by consumers when dialing an alternative carrier and by corporations who employ least-cost routing techniques.


February 23, 1996
Issues involving the implementation of the Telecommunications Act of 1996

March 28, 1996
Discussion of the formal complaints process

April 12, 1996
Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service

April 28, 1996
Forum with local exchange carriers regarding enforcement issues

May 20, 1996
Discussion of interconnection issues

May 7, 1996
Formal complaint processes and procedures and implementation of the 1996 Act

June 5, 1996
Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service: rural, insular, high cost and low income issues; alternatives for recovering costs and providing universal service support

June 19, 1996
Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service: schools and libraries; health care providers

July 9, 1996
Discussion involving Bell Operating Companies' entry into the interLATA market

September 12, 1996
Issues surrounding access charge reform and universal service

September 13, 1996
Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service : insular areas and Alaska; recovery of interstate loop costs

September 17, 1996
Discussion of enforcement issues in the 1996 Act

October 1, 1996
North American Numbering Council: Issues relating to numbering administration and implementation of the 1996 Act

October 17, 1996
Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service : schools and libraries; health care issues; rural, insular and high cost issues

November 7, 1996
Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service: Board adopted the Recommended Decision