Nevada Telecommunications Association Monthly Newsletter

FCC Announces 2021 Reasonable Comparability Benchmarks for Fixed Voice, Broadband
The Wireline Competition Bureau and the Office of Economics and Analytics issued a public notice on November 30, 2020, announcing the 2021 reasonable comparability benchmarks for fixed voice and broadband services for ETCs subject to broadband public interest obligations, including rate-of-return carriers, incumbent price-cap carriers receiving CAF Phase II support, RBE providers, CAF Phase II auction winners and RDOF auction winners. The WCB and OEA also announced the posting of the fixed voice and broadband services data collected in the most recent urban rate survey, explanatory notes regarding the data, and the required minimum usage allowance for ETCs subject to public interest obligations for fixed broadband. The 2021 rates are: local voice service is $33.73; reasonable comparability benchmark for voice services is $54.75; and reasonable comparability benchmarks for broadband range from $70.69 for 4/1 Mbps (350 GB usage allowance) to $140.80 for 1000/100 Mbps (unlimited usage). The benchmarks for Alaska Plan carriers are higher-ranging, from $107.50 to $191.20. ETCs providing fixed voice and broadband services must certify they meet the benchmarks in the FCC Form 481 filed no later than July 1, 2021.
[Source: NECA Washington Watch, 12/02/2020]
Commissioners Issue Statements on Pai FCC Departure AnnouncementSimington Sworn in as FCC Commissioner
Statements were issued by FCC Commissioners O’Rielly, Carr, Rosenworcel and Starks on November 30, 2020, on Chairman Pai’s intention to leave the FCC on January 20, 2021.
[Source: NECA Washington Watch, 12/02/2020]
Nathan Simington was sworn in as an FCC commissioner on December 14, 2020. Simington replaced Commissioner O’Rielly, and his term is for five years from July 1, 2019. The Senate confirmed Simington’s nomination on December 8, 2020.
[Source: NECA Washington Watch, 12/14/2020]
Managing Director Announces First Quarter 2021 USF Contribution Factor
The Office of Managing Director released a public notice on December 14, 2020, announcing the proposed universal service contribution factor for the first quarter of 2021 will be 31.8%, up from the previous quarter’s 27.1%.
[Source: NECA Washington Watch, 12/15/2020]

Seminar Series for 2021

Russian hackers said to attack NTIA, Treasury departments
A hacker group backed by the Russian government reportedly launched a cyberattack on the US Treasury Department and the US Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration via the NTIA’s Microsoft Office 365 platform. Other global victims may have included governments as well as consulting, technology, telecom and oil and gas companies. Full Story, [Source: USTelecom dailyLead, 12/14/2020]
Wireline Bureau Waives Performance Testing Requirements for Certain CarriersWireline Bureau Issues Caller ID Authentication Best Practices
The Wireline Competition Bureau issued an order on December 21, 2020, granting, on its own motion, a limited waiver of the performance testing requirements for recipients of A-CAM I, rural broadband experiment and Alaska Plan support. The bureau waived certain sampling requirements for these carriers and said because of the continuing challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic and possible supply-chain issues, it found there is good cause to modify the sample size for pretesting throughout 2021 while maintaining the current testing and pretesting schedule.
[Source: NECA Washington Watch, 12/22/2020]
The Wireline Competition Bureau issued a public notice on December 22, 2020, issuing caller ID authentication best practices. The best practices include, among other things: vetting of the identity of retail and wholesale subscribers; telephone number validation; third party validation services; and ongoing robocall mitigation. The bureau also declined to adopt two recommendations of the Call Authentication Trust Anchor working group of the North American Numbering Council regarding the SHAKEN attestation levels.
[Source: NECA Washington Watch, 12/23/2020]