New York Proposal to Combat Robocalls
Governor Cuomo announced the 17th proposal of his 2020 State of the State Agenda - a comprehensive proposal to fight incessant robocalls or nuisance calls. The legislation will require telecommunications companies to deploy technology that allows customers to block suspected robocalls. As technology improves to identify and stop these nuisance calls, or robocallers try to find new ways to circumvent these efforts, telecom companies will be required to update their blocking technology to protect their consumers.
FCC Forfeiture Penalties,
FTC No Call Registry Report
The Federal Trade Commission has issued its biennial report to Congress focusing on the use of the National Do Not Call (DNC) Registry by both consumers and businesses and other organizations over the past two years. The report includes: 1) a summary of current Registry operations; 2) a summary of the impact on the Registry of new telecommunication technologies; and 3) a discussion of the impact of the established business relationship exception in the Commission’s enforcement efforts.
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai,
FTC National Do Not Call Registry,
No Call Registry
FCC Toll Free Number Auction Results
Somos announced the winning bidders in the first toll free number auction held in December 2019. The 833 Auction bids raised $285,075 with 39 winning bidders winning a total of 1,659 Toll Free numbers. For winning bidders, the final payment deadline is January 8, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time (ET).
Oregon Universal Service Fund,
FCC Toll Free Number Auction,
3Q 2019 Inflation Adjustment for Cable Operators
FCC To Review Robocall Blocking Options
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai announced the FCC will begin a study of unwanted-call blocking services available to consumers. “As the FCC continues to pull out all the stops to protect consumers against scam robocalls and spoofing, we expect phone companies and others to make effective tools available to consumers so they can block unwanted and fraudulent calls,” said Chairman Pai. “This report will help us better understand where we stand on call blocking and how the actions we’ve taken to date have worked.”
FCC Commissioner O'Rielly,
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai,
Mississippi No-Call Violations,
911 State Fee Report,
USDA’s ReConnect program,
West Virginia Broadband
US Congress Passes Robocalling Bill
The Senate has passed the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence (TRACED) Act (S. 151) by a simple voice vote. It now heads to the president, who is expected to sign it into law. The Act passed the House earlier this month. See the Regulatory Mix dated 12/6/19
Among other things, the Act:
FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel,
Broadband Conversations Podcast,
call blocking system
US Congress Supply Chain Legislation
The House of Representatives passed, by voice vote, the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Act (HR 4998), a bipartisan bill to help secure America’s telecommunications supply chain. The bipartisan Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Act:
Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Act,
North Carolina Broadband Grants,
GREAT Grant Program
US Congress Broadband Mapping Bills
The House of Representatives passed two bipartisan broadband mapping bills by voice vote. H.R. 4227, the “Mapping Accuracy Promotion Services Act” or the “MAPS Act,” specifies that it is unlawful for a person to willfully, knowingly, or recklessly submit inaccurate broadband service data. H.R. 4229, the “Broadband Deployment Accuracy and Technological Availability Act” or the “Broadband DATA Act,” requires the FCC to issue new rules to require the collection and dissemination of granular broadband availability data and to establish a process to verify the accuracy of such data, and more.
Broadband DATA Act
FCC Announces Launch of API for Lifeline National Verifier
The FCC announced it has launched an electronic interface that participating carriers can use when verifying a potential subscriber’s eligibility for the program. The application programming interface (API) connects carriers’ systems to the Lifeline program’s National Eligibility Verifier. The API will enable carriers to send applicant information directly to the National Verifier for an eligibility check, thereby reducing the paperwork required from potential subscribers.
Truth in Caller ID Act,
Lifeline National Eligibility Verifier,
Cable Service Change Rules
FCC Proposes 988 As National Suicide Prevention & Mental Health Hotline Number
At its Open Meeting the FCC voted to adopt a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would designate 988 as a new, nationwide, 3-digit number for a suicide prevention and mental health crisis hotline. This Notice proposes that calls made to 988 would be directed to the existing National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, a national network of 163 crisis centers that is funded by the Department of Health and Human Services’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
988 Suicide Prevention Hotline,
National Suicide Prevention Hotline,
USDA Investing over $83 Million in Broadband Grants in Three States: Alabama, Illinois, South Carolina
In Illinois, the USDA announced it has invested $12.8 million in high-speed broadband infrastructure that will create or improve e-Connectivity for more than 1,650 homes in rural Illinois.
“We know that rural communities need robust, modern infrastructure to thrive, and that includes having access to broadband e-Connectivity,” Secretary Bill Northey said.
USDA Broadband Grant,
California Communications Grid