Nevada Telecommunications Association Newsletter

November 2017, Volume 181           Serving the Industry for over 59 Years           Editor: Mike Eifert

Survey: Aging systems, human error among CIOs' top cyberthreats

     Though CIOs and IT workers have some differences when it comes to viewpoints on IT challenges and federal initiatives, cybersecurity continues to be a priority among all workers, according to a Grant Thornton and Professional Services Council CIO survey. Aging systems, human error, malware and phishing were among the top concerns cited by federal IT workers in the survey. Federal News Radio [Source: USTelecom dailyLead, 10/09/2017]

WTA Concerned About Transfer of USAC Funds to Treasury

     WTA met with Legal Advisors to Chairman Pai and Commissioner Clyburn on September 28, 2017, to discuss the apparent plans to transfer the USF dollars currently managed by USAC to the U.S. Treasury and the status, timing and scope of the Commission's promised sixth-year review of the USF High-Cost support budgets adopted in 2011. WTA expressed concern about the mechanics of Treasury involvement, and suggested the contemplated transfer should be detailed and discussed in a public and transparent formal rulemaking before any concrete and difficult-to-reverse steps are taken. [Source: Washington Watch, 10/03/2017]

NTCA Discusses USF High-Cost Budget Reform, Cost Recovery for Expenses

     NTCA spoke with Commissioner O'Rielly's Legal Advisor on October 26, 2017, to discuss high-cost USF reforms, including a recommended, readily available path toward helping to mitigate the pervasive insufficiency of USF support and greater prospective confirmation as to the eligibility of certain expenses for cost recovery. [Source: Washington Watch, 10/30/2017]

NTCA Discusses Rural Call Completion Issues

     NTCA met with Wireline Competition Bureau and Enforcement Bureau staff on October 10, 2017, to discuss the rural call completion issues and a recent rise in complaints. NTCA asserted the Commission must not permit providers to use the fact that it costs more to terminate calls in rural areas as justification or excuse for not completing calls to rural consumers, as they are legally obligated to do, and said providers who fail to complete calls should be subject to enforcement action. NTCA urged the FCC to not repeal the current record keeping and reporting requirements until an effective replacement is identified and implemented. However, if the current requirements are repealed, NTCA recommended the Commission require providers to actively manage their networks and least cost routers, consistent with the ATIS best practices. [Source: Washington Watch, 10/13/2017]

USTelecom presses for National Verifier changes

     USTelecom asked the Federal Communications Commission to revise rules for the National Verifier Program to ease some of the administrative burdens on providers in advance of the launch of the new verifier service in six states in early December. In a meeting with FCC officials, USTelecom said the agency should eliminate one change in its rules that requires the verifier to send -- and for providers to obtain -- copies of customer certifications. Another request to the FCC was that the agency amend its rules to specify that providers are not required to retain any customer's eligibility or recertification information for more than three years after the National Verifier has first recertified that person. [Source: USTelecom dailyLead, 10/19/2017]

FCC's Pai proposes changes to Lifeline subsidy program

     Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai last week recommended changes to the Lifeline subsidy program that include a cap on awards, transferring oversight to the states and proposing ways to reduce perceived waste in the funding. Pai will offer a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking at the FCC's November meeting. Full article. [Source: USTelecom dailyLead, 10/30/2017]

Rosenworcel Discusses Broadband at Senate Hearing

     Commissioner Rosenworcel spoke before the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation on October 13, 2017, on broadband infrastructure in New Hampshire. Rosenworcel said there needs to be better broadband availability mapping, noting the National Broadband Map was last updated over three years ago. She said she created an FCC email account so those without service can report it and help make a broadband map. She also said wireless service is an essential part of digital age infrastructure, and said the AIRWAVES Act helps identify more licensed and unlicensed spectrum that can be brought to market to improve wireless broadband, and sets up a fund whereby auction revenues will help support wireless broadband infrastructure in rural America. She also said according to the Senate Joint Economic Committee, the homework gap affects 12 million children across the country. [Source: Washington Watch, 10/16/2017]

Senate Confirms Pai FCC Re-Nomination

     The Senate voted on October 2, 2017, to confirm President Trump's re-nomination of Chairman Pai to be a commissioner of the FCC for a term of five years from July 1, 2016. Pai issued a statement. [Source: Washington Watch, 10/03/2017]

House Subcommittee to Hold Hearing on FCC Oversight

     The House Subcommittee on Communications and Technology announced it will hold a hearing on October 25, 2017, on FCC oversight. The hearing will address Title II regulation, media issues, reforming the Lifeline program, the recently marked up FCC reauthorization bill, and the Commission's response and preparedness efforts in the wake of the recent natural disasters. All five current FCC commissioners will testify at the hearing. [Source: Washington Watch, 10/03/2017]

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Up Coming Events

November 2 - 3 2017 - South Carolina Telecommunications and Broadband Association (SCTBA) Fall Conference & Showcase Doubletree Hotel, Columbia, South Carolina

November 5 - 8 2017 - NECA EXPO 2017 Grand Hyatt Riverwalk, San Antonio

November 8 - 9 2017 - Iowa Communications Alliance (ICA) Impact Conference West Des Moines Marriott, West Des Moines, Iowa

November 27 - 29 2017 - North Dakota Association of Telecommunications Cooperatives (NDATC) Annual Meeting Ramkota Hotel, Bismarck, North Dakota

November 29 - 30 2017 - Montana Telecommunications Association (MTA) 36th Annual Showcase Billings Hotel & Convention Center, Billings, Montana

December 13 2017 - NECA Board of Directors meeting (Arizona) Scottsdale, Arizona

January 17 - 18 2018 - WSTA - Wisconsin's Broadband Association Broadband Forum Holiday Inn, Stevens Point, Wisconsin

January 28 - 31 2018 - Alaska Telephone Association (ATA) Winter Conference Koloa Landing Resort, Koloa (Poipu), Kauai, Hawaii

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