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2005 Latest News Archive

USAC's Latest News Archive gives you access to all announcements related to the High Cost Program as they were made throughout the years.

12/01/2005

LSS Deadline for 2004 True Up Information is December 30, 2005

INCUMBENT ELIGIBLE TELECOMMUNICATIONS CARRIERS (ETCs) WHO FILED FOR LOCAL SWITCHING SUPPORT (LSS) FOR THE CALENDAR YEAR 2004 MUST FILE ACTUAL LSS DATA (TRUE UP DATA) FOR CALENDAR YEAR 2004 NO LATER THAN DECEMBER 30, 2005.

All incumbent ETCs who filed for Local Switching Support (LSS) for calendar year 2004 must file actual LSS data (true up data) for calendar year 2004 with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) no later than Friday, December 30, 2005. This data will be used to true up LSS for calendar year 2004. If your LSS actuals for calendar year 2004 are not timely filed, all LSS disbursed for calendar year 2004 will be recovered by USAC.

Incumbent carriers must submit the data necessary to determine actual LSS revenue requirement on an OMB approved LSS form, which can be found on USAC's web site at www.universalservice.org/hc/forms. If you are an average schedule company, you should complete LSS Form A. If you are a cost company, you should complete LSS Form C. Whether you are an average schedule or a cost company, you may submit your Local Switching Form to USAC in one of three (3) ways:

Email: hcfilings@HCLI.universalservice.org

FAX: 1-866-873-4666

US Mail: Universal Service Administrative Company
444 Hoes Lane
RRC 4A1060
Piscataway, NJ 08854

If the National Exchange Carrier Association (NECA) files your LSS data on your behalf, NECA must submit the same data as required on the LSS forms. In addition, NECA must file your data with USAC no later than December 30, 2005.

If you have additional questions, please contact USAC's customer service center at 877-877-4925.

12/01/2005

All Competitive Eligible Telecommunications Carriers (CETCS) Must file Quarterly Line Counts

All Eligible Telecommunications Carriers (ETCs) with a CETC filing line counts in their service area are required to file line counts with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) on a quarterly basis. In addition, all CETCs are required to file line counts with USAC on a quarterly basis using the new CETC Form 525. In order to qualify for high cost support, you must report your line counts as follows:

  • High Cost Loop, Local Switching Support, and Long Term Support:
    Your next line count filing is due no later than December 30, 2005 for the number of lines you served as of June 30, 2005. ETCs must report line counts consistent with the disaggregation path they selected. Your lines must be reported consistent with the disaggregation path selected by the incumbent carrier(s) in whose service area(s) you serve lines. You may obtain copies of the appropriate disaggregation plans by calling USAC (202-776-0200). You must file your line counts using Form 525.
  • Interstate Common Line Support:
    Your next line count filing is due no later than December 30, 2005 for the number of lines you served as of June 30, 2005. Your lines must be reported by customer class. (Residential and single line business lines are reported separately from multi-line business lines.) ETCs must report lines consistent with the disaggregation path they selected. You must report lines consistent with the disaggregation path selected by the incumbent carrier(s) in whose service area(s) you serve lines. You must file your line counts using Form 525.
  • High Cost Model Support:
    Your next line count filing is due no later than December 30, 2005 for the number of lines you served as of June 30, 2005. Your lines must be reported by wire center. You must file your line counts using Form 525.
  • Interstate Access Support:
    Your next line count filing is due by the last business day of the quarter, December 30, 2005, for the number of lines you served as of September 30, 2005. Your lines must be reported by UNE zone and customer class. (Residential and single line business lines are reported separately from multi-line business lines.)
    You must file your line counts using Form 525.

Form 525 and the instructions can be found on USAC's website at http://www.universalservice.org/hc/tools/required-forms.aspx.

If your line count filing is received after the filing date, you will need to file a petition for waiver with the FCC. USAC is not authorized to waive the filing deadline, so only the FCC's grant of a waiver will permit USAC to use your December line counts to calculate high cost support.

If you have additional questions, please contact High Cost Customer Service at 877-877-4925.

12/01/2005

All Competitive Eligible Telecommunications Carriers (CETCS) Must file Quarterly Line Counts

All Eligible Telecommunications Carriers (ETCs) with a CETC filing line counts in their service area are required to file line counts with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) on a quarterly basis. In addition, all CETCs are required to file line counts with USAC on a quarterly basis using the new CETC Form 525. In order to qualify for high cost support, you must report your line counts as follows:

  • High Cost Loop, Local Switching Support, and Long Term Support:
    Your next line count filing is due no later than December 30, 2005 for the number of lines you served as of June 30, 2005. ETCs must report line counts consistent with the disaggregation path they selected. Your lines must be reported consistent with the disaggregation path selected by the incumbent carrier(s) in whose service area(s) you serve lines. You may obtain copies of the appropriate disaggregation plans by calling USAC (202-776-0200). You must file your line counts using Form 525.
  • Interstate Common Line Support:
    Your next line count filing is due no later than December 30, 2005 for the number of lines you served as of June 30, 2005. Your lines must be reported by customer class. (Residential and single line business lines are reported separately from multi-line business lines.) ETCs must report lines consistent with the disaggregation path they selected. You must report lines consistent with the disaggregation path selected by the incumbent carrier(s) in whose service area(s) you serve lines. You must file your line counts using Form 525.
  • High Cost Model Support:
    Your next line count filing is due no later than December 30, 2005 for the number of lines you served as of June 30, 2005. Your lines must be reported by wire center. You must file your line counts using Form 525.
  • Interstate Access Support:
    Your next line count filing is due by the last business day of the quarter, December 30, 2005, for the number of lines you served as of September 30, 2005. Your lines must be reported by UNE zone and customer class. (Residential and single line business lines are reported separately from multi-line business lines.)
    You must file your line counts using Form 525.

Form 525 and the instructions can be found on USAC's website at http://www.universalservice.org/hc/tools/required-forms.aspx.

If your line count filing is received after the filing date, you will need to file a petition for waiver with the FCC. USAC is not authorized to waive the filing deadline, so only the FCC's grant of a waiver will permit USAC to use your December line counts to calculate high cost support.

If you have additional questions, please contact High Cost Customer Service at 877-877-4925.

12/01/2005

Incumbent Eligible Telecommunication Carriers (ETCs) That Projected Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS) For Any Part Of Calendar Year 2004, Must File Actual ICLS Data For Calendar Year 2004 on December 31, 2005.

All incumbent ETCs that projected for Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS) for any part of calendar year 2004, must file actual ICLS data for calendar year 2004 with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) on December 30, 2005. This data will be used to true up ICLS for calendar year 2004. If your ICLS actuals for calendar year 2004 are not timely filed, all ICLS disbursed for calendar year 2004 will be recovered by USAC.

Incumbent carriers must submit the data necessary to determine actual ICLS on an OMB approved ICLS form (form 509), which can be found on USAC's web site at www.universalservice.org/hc/forms. Form 509 may be submitted to USAC in one of three (3) ways:

Email: hcfilings@HCLI.universalservice.org

Fax: 1-866-873-4666

US Mail:
Universal Service Administrative Company
444 Hoes Lane
RRC 4A1060
Piscataway, NJ 08854

If the National Exchange Carrier Association (NECA) files your ICLS data on your behalf, NECA must submit the same data as required on the ICLS form 509. In addition, NECA must file your data with USAC no later than December 30, 2005.

If you have additional questions, please contact USAC's customer service center at 877-877-4925.

10/17/2005

FCC Releases Hurricane Katrina USF Order (10/17/2005)

The FCC released Order FCC 05-178 [PDF, 341 KB] on October 14, 2005 regarding the implementation of Chairman Martin's September 15th announcement to use $211 million in federal Universal Service Funds for areas affected by Hurricane Katrina. USAC is reviewing the Order. Please monitor www.usac.org/katrina/ for the latest information on USAC's administration of the Order.

10/06/2005

Holiday Announcement - USAC will be closed Monday, October 10, 2005 (10/6/05)

The Universal Service Administrative Company will be closed Monday, October 10, 2005 in observance of the Columbus Day holiday. USAC will resume normal business operations Tuesday, October 11, 2005.

09/27/2005

Form 525 Webinar (9/27/2005)

On September 14, 2005, the High Cost Team held a webinar to help familiarize carriers with the new Form 525 for Competitive Eligible Telecommunications Carriers (CETCs). This new form was developed to provide CETCs with one form with which to submit line count information for all High Cost mechanisms.

09/19/2005

Notifications for October (9/19/2005)

  • Notifications for October--Oct 1 Cert (19kb - pdf)
  • Notifications for October--LSS Projections (13kb - pdf)
09/19/2005

Notifications for October (9/19/2005)

  • Notifications for October--Oct 1 Cert (19kb - pdf)
  • Notifications for October--LSS Projections (13kb - pdf)
09/07/2005

Reminder: Certification For New Rate Comparability Review For Non-Rural Carriers Serving In Rural Areas Is Due On October 1, 2005 (9/7/2005)

In an order released in October of 2003, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) adopted an annual state certification requirement that is due October 1, 2005. Pursuant to § 54.316 of the FCC's rules, each state is required annually to review the comparability of residential rates in rural areas of the state served by non-rural incumbent local exchange carriers (ILECs) to urban rates nationwide, and to certify to the FCC and the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) as to whether the rates are reasonably comparable. Please note that this new certification is in addition to the annual certifications in which states certify to the use of high cost universal service funds, which are also due on October 1.

For the rate comparability certification, states may use a safe harbor and presume for certification purposes that the residential rates in rural areas served by non-rural ILECs are reasonably comparable to urban rates nationwide, if the rates are below the nationwide urban rate benchmark. The nationwide urban benchmark is the most recent average urban rate plus two standard deviations, or $34.21 for the upcoming certification period. This benchmark amount will be adjusted annually.

If a state does not rely on the safe harbor provision, or certifies that the rates are not reasonably comparable, the state must fully explain its rate comparability analysis and provide data supporting its certification, including but not limited to residential rate data for rural areas within the state served by non-rural ILECs. If a state certifies that the rates are not reasonably comparable, it must also explain why the rates are not reasonably comparable and explain what action it intends to take to achieve rate comparability.

Details of this requirement, along with rate comparability guidelines and a basic service rate template, can be found in the FCC's Order on Remand, Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, and Memorandum Opinion and Order, CC Docket No. 96-45, FCC 03-249, released on October 27, 2003. Go to the Order online.

Please remember that the annual rate comparability certification is due to the FCC and USAC on October 1, 2005 and pertains to rates as of July 1, 2005. Certifications should be filed with both the FCC and USAC at the addresses below:

FCC:
Marlene H. Dortch
Office of the Secretary
Federal Communications Commission
445 - 12th Street, SW, Room TW-A306
Washington, DC 20554

USAC:
Karen M. Majcher
Universal Service Administrative Company
2000 L Street, N.W., Suite 200
Washington, DC 20036
09/19/2005

Notifications for October (9/19/2005)

  • Notifications for October--Oct 1 Cert (19kb - pdf)
  • Notifications for October--LSS Projections (13kb - pdf)
09/07/2005

Reminder: Certification For New Rate Comparability Review For Non-Rural Carriers Serving In Rural Areas Is Due On October 1, 2005 (9/7/2005)

In an order released in October of 2003, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) adopted an annual state certification requirement that is due October 1, 2005. Pursuant to § 54.316 of the FCC's rules, each state is required annually to review the comparability of residential rates in rural areas of the state served by non-rural incumbent local exchange carriers (ILECs) to urban rates nationwide, and to certify to the FCC and the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) as to whether the rates are reasonably comparable. Please note that this new certification is in addition to the annual certifications in which states certify to the use of high cost universal service funds, which are also due on October 1.

For the rate comparability certification, states may use a safe harbor and presume for certification purposes that the residential rates in rural areas served by non-rural ILECs are reasonably comparable to urban rates nationwide, if the rates are below the nationwide urban rate benchmark. The nationwide urban benchmark is the most recent average urban rate plus two standard deviations, or $34.21 for the upcoming certification period. This benchmark amount will be adjusted annually.

If a state does not rely on the safe harbor provision, or certifies that the rates are not reasonably comparable, the state must fully explain its rate comparability analysis and provide data supporting its certification, including but not limited to residential rate data for rural areas within the state served by non-rural ILECs. If a state certifies that the rates are not reasonably comparable, it must also explain why the rates are not reasonably comparable and explain what action it intends to take to achieve rate comparability.

Details of this requirement, along with rate comparability guidelines and a basic service rate template, can be found in the FCC's Order on Remand, Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, and Memorandum Opinion and Order, CC Docket No. 96-45, FCC 03-249, released on October 27, 2003. Go to the Order online [MS Word].

Please remember that the annual rate comparability certification is due to the FCC and USAC on October 1, 2005 and pertains to rates as of July 1, 2005. Certifications should be filed with both the FCC and USAC at the addresses below:

FCC:
Marlene H. Dortch
Office of the Secretary
Federal Communications Commission
445 - 12th Street, SW, Room TW-A306
Washington, DC 20554

USAC:
Karen M. Majcher
Universal Service Administrative Company
2000 L Street, N.W., Suite 200
Washington, DC 20036

08/31/2005

Holiday Announcement - USAC will be closed Monday, September 5, 2005 (8/31/2005)

Holiday Announcement - The Universal Service Administrative Company will be closed Monday, September 5, 2005 in observance of the Labor Day holiday. USAC will resume normal business operations Tuesday, September 6, 2005.

08/03/2005

FCC Form 525 (Competitive Carrier Line Count Report) Approved by OMB (8/3/2005)

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved the new FCC Form 525, the Competitive Carrier Line Count Report. Competitive Eligible Telecommunications Carriers (CETCs) will be required to use this form for the next quarterly line count filing due September 30, 2005 and for each quarter after that going forward.

The new form was created to facilitate CETC submission of High Cost Support data on one form for any of the High Cost Mechanism components including High Cost Loop (HCL); Local Switching Support (LSS); Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS); High Cost Model (HCM) Support; and Interstate Access Support (IAS).

The new form allows CETCs to submit data for one or more of the High Cost components (on a disaggregated level, if applicable) and includes certification pages for the reporting carrier and/or the authorized agent of the reporting carrier. The new form will also collect UNE data.

CETCs will be required to use the form. Click here to review the new FCC Form 525. Questions on the new FCC Form 525 or its instructions should be directed to USAC's High Cost Customer Service Center at 1-877-877-4666 or via E-mail.

07/19/2005

New Filing Requirements and Deadlines Tool for Carriers and PUCs (7/19/2005)

USAC has developed the following tool to assist both carriers and state commissions determine what the required and recommended filings are for High Cost Support generally, as well as component specific filings, including: High Cost Loop (HCL), Safety Net Additive (SNA), Safety Valve Support (SVS), Local Switching Support (LSS), Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS), Interstate Access Support (IAS), and High Cost Model (HCM). Go to the Filing Requirements and Deadlines Tool.

07/19/2005

New Filing Requirements and Deadlines Tool for Carriers and PUCs (7/19/2005)

USAC has developed the following tool to assist both carriers and state commissions determine what the required and recommended filings are for High Cost Support generally, as well as component specific filings, including: High Cost Loop (HCL), Safety Net Additive (SNA), Safety Valve Support (SVS), Local Switching Support (LSS), Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS), Interstate Access Support (IAS), and High Cost Model (HCM). Go to the Filing Requirements and Deadlines Tool.

07/08/2005

HCL, LSS, HCM, and ICLS Line Count Filings are due by July 29, 2005 (7/8/2005)

Incumbent and competitive carriers must file line count data for High Cost Loop, Local Switching Support, High Cost Model, and Interstate Common Line Support by July 29, 2005.

Incumbent carriers must file line counts consistent with the disaggregation path they selected. If you are a competitive carrier, you must file line counts consistent with the disaggregation path selected by the incumbent carrier(s) in whose service area(s) you serve lines.

Incumbent Carriers
FCC rules (see § 36.611(h)) require all rural incumbent carriers to submit certain investment and expense data, including line count information, to the National Exchange Carrier Association (NECA) by July 31 of each year. Because July 31 falls on a Sunday in 2005, annual line counts are due by July 29, 2005. You must report the lines consistent with the disaggregation path you selected. Rural incumbent carriers must file their line count information with NECA.

Interstate Common Line Support
In addition, FCC rules (see § 54.903(a)(1)) require all rate-of-return incumbent carriers to file annual line counts for Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS) by July 29, 2005. You must use FCC Form 507, Interstate Common Line Support Mechanism Line Count Report, to report lines for ICLS with USAC. Rate-of-return carriers must report lines consistent with the disaggregation path they selected and by customer class for each study area in which they serve. Your line count data must be disaggregated by cost zone, if disaggregated zones have been established. The line count data collected on FCC Form 507 must be reported in the following categories: Number of residential and single-line business access lines in service; Number of multi-line business access lines in service; and Total number of access lines in service. Rate-of Return incumbent carriers, or their agents, must file ICLS line count data with USAC.

High Cost Model (HCM) Support
FCC rules (see § 54.309(b)(4)) require all non-rural incumbent carriers to file quarterly line count information by wire center for High Cost Model (HCM) support by July 29, 2005. All incumbent local exchange carriers are required to submit certain investment and expense data, including line count information, to the National Exchange Carrier Association (NECA) by July 31 of each year. Because July 31 falls on a Sunday in 2005, annual line counts are due by July 29, 2005. Non-Rural incumbent carriers must file their HCM line count information with NECA.

Competitive Carriers
If you are a competitive eligible telecommunications carrier (CETC) that serves lines in an incumbent carrier's service area, FCC rules require you to file line counts on a quarterly basis. Your next line count filing is due by July 29, 2005. CETCs must file their line count information with USAC.

For HCL and LSS, you must report lines consistent with the disaggregation plan selected by the incumbent carrier(s) in whose service area(s) you serve lines. For HCM, you must report lines by wire centers.

For ICLS, CETCs must file the number of working loops you serve in the service area of a rate-of-return incumbent carrier, disaggregated by the incumbent carrier's cost zones, if applicable, using FCC Form 507.

Line count forms and sample letters can be found on USAC's High Cost Forms page.

Remember: Your line count filings must be received by USAC (or NECA) by July 29, 2005. If your line count filing is received after that date, you will need to file a petition with the FCC for a waiver of the line count filing rule in order for USAC to be permitted to use your line counts to calculate high cost support.

You may submit your line count data to USAC in one of three (3) ways:

Email: hcfilings@HCLI.universalservice.org
FAX: 1-866-873-4666

US Mail:

Universal Service Administrative Company
444 Hoes Lane
RCC 4A1060
Piscataway, NJ 08854

If you have additional questions, please contact USAC's customer service center at 877-877-4925.

06/02/2005

IAS Annual Self-Certifications are Due June 30, 2005 (5/31/2005, Revised 6/2/05)

PRICE CAP CARRIERS AND CETCs MUST FILE ANNUAL SELF-CERTIFICATIONS FOR INTERSTATE ACCESS SUPPORT

Each price cap carrier, and CETCs serving lines in the service area of a price cap carrier, must file an annual IAS self-certification on June 30, 2005 in order to receive Interstate Access Support (IAS) for the upcoming program year, which runs from July 1, 2005 to June 30, 2006. The annual self-certification must be filed with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and must state that all IAS provided will be used ONLY for the provision, maintenance, and upgrading of facilities and services for which the support is intended.

The IAS self-certification may be filed in the form of a letter from an authorized representative for the carrier. An IAS self-certification sample letter can be found on USAC's High Cost Forms page. Once you have submitted your self-certification to USAC, you may check our Certifications Page to see if we have received your self-certification. In the event you provide an IAS certification in your own format, please be sure to reference CC Docket No. 96-45 and file the self-certification with both USAC and the Office of the Secretary of the FCC at the addresses listed below:

Irene M. Flannery
Senior Vice President – Programs
Universal Service Administrative Company
2000 L Street, NW, Suite 200
Washington , DC 20036

Marlene H. Dortch
Office of the Secretary
Federal Communications Commission
445 – 12th Street, SW
Washington, DC 20554

Your IAS self-certification must be received by USAC and the FCC on June 30, 2005 to be eligible for IAS for the entire upcoming program year. If your IAS self-certification is filed late, absent a waiver from the FCC you will be eligible for IAS support as follows:

If filed by September 30, 2005, a carrier will only be eligible for support in the fourth quarter 2005, and the first and second quarters of 2006.

If filed by December 31, 2005, a carrier will only be eligible for support in the first and second quarters of 2006.

If filed by March 31, 2006, a carrier will only be eligible for support in the second quarter of 2006.

If you have additional questions, please contact USAC's customer service center at 877-877-4925.

06/02/2005

ICLS Annual Self-Certifications are Due June 30, 2005 (5/31/2005, Revised 6/2/05)

RATE-OF-RETURN CARRIERS AND CETCs MUST FILE ANNUAL SELF-CERTIFICATIONS FOR INTERSTATE COMMON LINE SUPPORT (ICLS) ON JUNE 30, 2005

Each rate-of-return carrier, and CETCs serving lines in the service area of a rate-of-return carrier, must file an annual self-certification on June 30, 2005 in order to receive Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS) for the upcoming program year, which runs from July 1, 2005 to June 30, 2006. The annual self-certification must be filed with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and must state that all ICLS provided will be used ONLY for the provision, maintenance, and upgrading of facilities and services for which the support is intended.

The ICLS self-certification may be filed in the form of a letter from an authorized representative for the carrier. Click here to view a n ICLS self-certification sample letter that can be used for the June 30, 2005 filing. Once you have submitted your self-certification to USAC, you may check our Certifications Page to see if we have received your self-certification. In the event you provide an ICLS certification in your own format, please be sure to reference CC Docket No. 96-45 and file the self-certification with both USAC and the Office of the Secretary of the FCC at the addresses listed below:

Irene M. Flannery
Senior Vice President – Programs
Universal Service Administrative Company
2000 L Street, NW, Suite 200
Washington , DC 20036

Marlene H. Dortch
Office of the Secretary
Federal Communications Commission
445 – 12 th Street, SW
Washington, DC 20554

Your ICLS self-certification must be received by USAC and the FCC on June 30, 2005 to be eligible for ICLS for the entire upcoming program year. If your ICLS self-certification is filed late, absent a waiver from the FCC you will be eligible for ICLS support as follows:

If filed by September 30, 2005, a carrier will only be eligible for support in the first and second quarters of 2006.

If filed by December 31, 2005, a carrier will only be eligible for support in the second quarter of 2006.

After December 31, 2005 , a carrier is not eligible for any ICLS for the program year.

If you have additional questions, please contact USAC's customer service center at 877-877-4925.

05/27/2005

Holiday Announcement - The High Cost Division will be closed Monday, May 30, 2005 in observance of Memorial Day. (5/27/05)

05/27/2005

Quarterly Line Counts Due March 30th (3/25/2005)

All Eligible Telecommunications Carriers (ETCs) with a Competitive Eligible Telecommunications Carrier (CETC) filing line counts in their service area(s) are required to file line counts with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) on a quarterly basis. In addition, all CETCs are required to file required line counts with USAC on a quarterly basis.

In order to qualify for high cost support, you must report your line counts as follows:

  • High Cost Loop and Local Switching Support:  Your next line count filing is due no later than March 30, 2005 for the number of lines you served as of September 30, 2004. For ETCs, your lines must be reported consistent with the disaggregation path you selected. For CETCs, your lines must be reported consistent with the disaggregation path selected by the incumbent carrier(s) in whose service area(s) you serve lines. You may obtain copies of the appropriate disaggregation plans by calling USAC (202-776-0200).
  • Interstate Common Line Support: Your next line count filing is due no later than March 30, 2005 for the number of lines you served as of September 30, 2004. You, or your agent, must report your lines using FCC Form 507, which is available on the Forms Section of USAC's website. Your lines must be reported by customer class. (Residential and single line business lines are reported separately from multi-line business lines.)  For ETCs, your lines must be reported consistent with the disaggregation path you selected. For CETCs, your lines must be reported consistent with the disaggregation path selected by the incumbent carrier(s) in whose service area(s) you serve lines
  • High Cost Model Support:  Your next line count filing is due no later than March 30, 2005 for the number of lines you served as of September 30, 2004. For both ETCs and CETCs, your lines must be reported by wire center.
  • Interstate Access Support:  Your next line count filing is due by the last business day of the quarter, March 31, 2005, for the number of lines you served as of December 31, 2004. For both ETCs and CETCs, your lines must be reported by UNE zone and customer class. (Residential and single line business lines are reported separately from multi-line business lines.) 

Remember:  Line count filings for all High Cost support mechanisms except IAS must be received by USAC no later than March 30, 2005. IAS must be received at USAC by March 31, 2005. If the line count filing is received after the filing date, a petition for waiver will need to be filed with the FCC. Because USAC is not authorized to waive filing deadlines, only the FCC's grant of a waiver will permit USAC to use your March line counts to calculate high cost support.

USAC provides three (3) sample line count letters for CETCs to use for their quarterly line count filings. The first sample letter provides a format for the submission of High Cost Loop (HCL) and Local Switching Support (LSS) line counts. The second sample letter provides a format for the submission of High Cost Model (HCM) support line counts. The third sample letter provides a format for the submission of Interstate Access Support (IAS) line counts. Please remember that CETCs must report line counts for Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS) using FCC Form 507. All High Cost Support Mechanism forms and sample letters can be found on the High Cost Forms page.

03/23/2005

FCC Addresses Minimum Requirements for ETC Designations (3/23/2005)

On March 17, 2005, the Federal Communications Commission released a Report and Order (FCC 05-46) adopted on February 25, 2005, addressing the minimum requirements for a telecommunications carrier to be designated as an "eligible telecommunications carrier" or "ETC," and thus eligible to receive federal universal service support. In the order, the FCC adopted additional mandatory requirements for ETC designation proceedings in which the FCC acts under Section 214(e)(6) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (the Act). In addition, the FCC encouraged states that exercise jurisdiction over ETC designations under § 214(e)(2) of the Act to adopt these requirements when deciding whether a common carrier should be designated as an ETC.

The FCC's Report and Order addresses eligibility requirements, public interest determinations, annual certification and reporting requirements; and other issues. Among the other issues addressed, the FCC decided its procedures for redefinition proceedings do not warrant a change at this time; granted certain pending petitions for redefinition of rural incumbent LEC study areas; modified the FCC's annual high-cost certification and line count filing deadlines so that newly designated ETCs are permitted to file these data within sixty days of their ETC designation date, and modified the quarterly interstate access support certification filing schedule; and delegated authority to the Universal Service Administrative Company, in accordance with direction from the Wireline Competition Bureau, to develop standards for the submission of any maps that ETCs are required to submit under Commission rules.

Report and Order [MS Word], FCC 05-46, released March 17, 2005

Press Release [MS Word], released February 28, 2005

03/23/2005

FCC Addresses Minimum Requirements for ETC Designations (3/23/2005)

On March 17, 2005, the Federal Communications Commission released a Report and Order (FCC 05-46) adopted on February 25, 2005, addressing the minimum requirements for a telecommunications carrier to be designated as an "eligible telecommunications carrier" or "ETC," and thus eligible to receive federal universal service support. In the order, the FCC adopted additional mandatory requirements for ETC designation proceedings in which the FCC acts under Section 214(e)(6) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (the Act). In addition, the FCC encouraged states that exercise jurisdiction over ETC designations under § 214(e)(2) of the Act to adopt these requirements when deciding whether a common carrier should be designated as an ETC.

The FCC's Report and Order addresses eligibility requirements, public interest determinations, annual certification and reporting requirements; and other issues. Among the other issues addressed, the FCC decided its procedures for redefinition proceedings do not warrant a change at this time; granted certain pending petitions for redefinition of rural incumbent LEC study areas; modified the FCC's annual high-cost certification and line count filing deadlines so that newly designated ETCs are permitted to file these data within sixty days of their ETC designation date, and modified the quarterly interstate access support certification filing schedule; and delegated authority to the Universal Service Administrative Company, in accordance with direction from the Wireline Competition Bureau, to develop standards for the submission of any maps that ETCs are required to submit under Commission rules.

Report and Order, FCC 05-46, released March 17, 2005

Press Release, released February 28, 2005

03/23/2005

Accepting Untimely Filed Certifications for Interstate Access Support (3/23/05)

§ 54.809(c) of the Federal Communication Commission's rules states that in order for an ETC to receive Interstate Access Support (IAS), the ETC must file an annual certification of the date that it first files line count information and thereafter on June 30 of each year. As a result, the current rule prohibits an otherwise eligible carrier from receiving IAS for as much as a year if it misses the annual certification deadline.

In Report and Order FCC 05-46, released March 17, 2005, the Commission has ruled that in the event that an annual certification is filed after the deadline of June 30, the ETC shall receive support pursuant to the following schedule:

  • Carriers that file no later than September 30 shall receive support for the fourth quarter of that year and the first and second quarters of the subsequent year.
  • Carriers that file no later than December 31 shall receive support for the first and second quarters of the subsequent year
  • Carriers that file no later than March 31 of the subsequent year shall receive support for the second quarter of the subsequent year.

If you have additional questions, please contact USAC Customer Service Center at 877-877-4925.

03/23/2005

Price Cap Line Counts & CMT Revenues due (3/23/05)

Each Price Cap LEC is required to file line counts with the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) on a quarterly basis, and CMT revenue, UNE Loops and Line Port rates, and boundary information for each UNE zone on an annual basis. In order to qualify for Interstate Access Support, you must report this information as follows:

Line Counts: Your next line count filing is due by the last business day of the quarter, March 31, 2005, for the number of lines you served for the period ending December 31, 2004. Your lines must be reported by UNE zone and customer class. (Residential and single-line business lines are reported separately from multi-line business lines.)
Average Price Cap CMT Revenue per Line per Month: Your filing of CMT revenue is due on April 15, 2005. Your revenues must be reported for each study area in accordance with § 54.800(a) and 54.802(a) of the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) rules.
Rates established for UNE Loops and UNE Line Ports: Your filing of UNE Loops and UNE Line Port rates is due on April 15, 2005. Your rates must be reported for each study area where UNE Zones have been established as of the date of the filing.
Information sufficient to determine the boundaries of each UNE Zone: Your filing of UNE Zone boundary information is due on April 15, 2005. Your boundary information must be reported for each study area where UNE Zones have been changed or newly established as of the date of the filing. If there have been no changes since the previous filing, a statement that there have been no changes may be submitted in lieu of such information.

If any of your filings are received after the filing date, you will need to file a petition for waiver with the FCC. USAC is not authorized to waive the filing deadline, so only the FCC's grant of a waiver will permit USAC to use your filings to calculate Interstate Access Support.

If you have additional questions, please contact USAC Customer Service Center at 877-877-4925.

03/22/2005

DRAFT -- New FCC Form 525, Competitive Carrier Line Count Report, Available for Review (3/22/2005)

The FCC has submitted a new FCC Form 525, called the Competitive Carrier Line Count Report, for Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approval. The new form was created to facilitate competitive eligible telecommunications carrier (CETC) submission of High Cost Support data on one form for any of the High Cost Mechanism Components including High Cost Loop (HCL); Local Switching Support (LSS); Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS); High Cost Model (HCM); and Interstate Access Support (IAS).

The new form allows CETCs to submit data for one or more of the High Cost components (on a disaggregated level, if applicable) and includes certification pages for the reporting carrier and/or the authorized agent of the reporting carrier. The new form will also collect UNE data necessary to determine proper support payments for both incumbent and competitive carriers. While pending final OMB approval, competitive carriers are encouraged to review and familiarize themselves with the form and instructions as CETCs will be required to use the form once approved.

USAC will notify CETCs when the form is approved and required for use. Click here to review the new FCC Form 525. In the meantime, any questions or comments on the new FCC Form 525 or its instructions should be directed to USAC's High Cost Customer Service Center at 1-877-877-4666 or via E-mail.

03/22/2005

ICLS FCC Form 508 for 2005-2006 Program Year Due 3/31/05 (3/22/2005)

In the MAG Order (FCC 01-304), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) modified its rules to reform the interstate access charge and universal service support system for incumbent local exchange carriers (LECs) subject to rate-of-return regulation. Pursuant to 47 C.F.R § 54-901-54.904, the FCC established the Interstate Common Line Support (ICLS) Mechanism.

On March 31st, each rate-of-return incumbent carrier must file a projected annual common line requirement form (FCC Form 508) setting forth its projections for the upcoming period July 1 through June 30. 47 C.F.R. § 54.903(a)(3).

You must submit certifications with the signature of an authorized person with the FCC Form 508. If you are filing FCC Form 508 on your own behalf, you must complete the reporting carrier certification page. If you are authorizing an agent to file FCC Form 508 on your behalf, you must complete the top portion of the agent certification page. Once you have completed the top portion of the agent certification page, your authorized agent must complete the bottom portion of the agent certification page.

Carriers submitting FCC Form 508 on their own behalf.
If you are filing FCC Form 508 on your own behalf, an authorized officer or employee of your company must complete the reporting carrier certification page of FCC Form 508. By completing the reporting carrier certification page, the officer or employee of the reporting carrier is certifying that: (1) he/she is an officer or an employee of the reporting carrier; (2) his/her responsibilities include ensuring the accuracy of the projected annual common line requirement information reported on the form; and (3) the information reported on the form is accurate to the best of his/her knowledge. The certification must be signed by an authorized officer or employee of the company and must be submitted to USAC along with the projected annual common line revenue requirement information.

Carriers authorizing an agent to file FCC Form 508 on their behalf.
If you are authorizing an agent to file FCC Form 508 on your behalf, you, as the reporting carrier, must complete the top portion of the agent certification page of FCC Form 508. By completing the agent authorization section, the officer or employee of your company is certifying that: (1) the agent identified on the agent certification is authorized to submit the projected annual common line revenue requirement information to USAC on your behalf; (2) he/she is an officer or employee of the reporting carrier; (3) his/her responsibilities include ensuring the accuracy of the projected annual common line revenue requirement information provided to the authorized agent; and (4) the projected annual common line revenue requirement information provided to the authorized agent is accurate to the best of his/her knowledge. The certification must be signed by an authorized officer or employee of the company. You will then provide the certification with the signature of the authorized person to your authorized agent.

Your authorized agent is responsible for completing the bottom portion of the agent certification page of FCC Form 508. By completing the agent certification section, the authorized agent is certifying that: (1) he/she is authorized to submit the information on your behalf; (2) the projected annual common line revenue requirement information provided on the form is based on data received from you (the reporting carrier); (3) the information provided on the form is accurate to the best of the agent's knowledge; and (4) the authorized agent will provide copies of the projected annual common line revenue requirement filing to you within 15 days. The certification must be signed by the authorized agent or an employee of the authorized agent.

Certifications with the signatures of the authorized persons, as well as all of the information requested on the worksheet of FCC Form 508 for all incumbent rate-of-return carriers, must be received by USAC in accordance with the filing dates on page 2 of these instructions.

Please note that, if the form is submitted electronically on CD or computer disk in Excel 97 or above, the certifications with the signatures of the authorized persons still must be received by USAC by the due dates.

Request for Confidential Treatment of Filed Data.

You may request confidential treatment of some or all of the data filed to qualify for ICLS by making such a request in your cover letter transmittal of your FCC Form 508 and by complying with the requirements set forth in 47 C.F.R. Section 0.459.

Where to File Completed Forms.

You are encouraged to submit the form electronically on CD or computer disk in Excel 97 or above. The form must be received at the address listed below by the due date. If you are unable to submit the completed form in electronic format, please submit your paper copies to the same address.

U.S. Mail, Overnight, or Expedited Mail/Courier Services:

USAC
444 Hoes Lane
RRC 4A1060
Piscataway, NJ
(877)-877-4925

If You Have Questions

Please consult the USAC web site, for important information and updates.

You may submit questions via E-mail.

You may telephone USAC's HCLI Customer Service Center at (877) 877-4925 (toll-free).

You may fax your questions to USAC's HCLI Customer Service Center at (866) 873 (USF)-4695 (toll free).

02/18/2005

Introducing: High Cost ILEC and CETC Graphs (2/18/05)

Now available are graphical comparisons of High Cost Support for ILECs and CETCs. These graphs will be updated on a quarterly basis. Go to Quarterly Graphs.

02/09/2005

Changes to the Safety Net Additive Support Calculation beginning February 2005 (2/9/05)

In a January 14, 2005 letter to USAC, the FCC clarified that "SNA support should be based on the amount calculated for the first qualifying year," which would then be paid in the qualifying year and in any of the remaining years of the Rural Task Force (RTF) plan in which the High Cost Loop cap is triggered. The FCC said its rules did not contemplate companies qualifying for SNA support in multiple years and determined that "additional SNA should not be available where an incumbent LEC meets the 14 percent TPIS trigger in subsequent years." In other words, once a company qualifies for SNA support, it will receive SNA support based on its initial qualification letter in any of the remaining years of the RTF plan in which the High Cost Loop cap is triggered. See letter from FCC to USAC.

The FCC's clarification will require USAC to recalculate SNA support for companies that filed subsequent SNA qualification letters after their initial qualification letter. The companies affected will receive a letter in February 2005 notifying the companies of the impact to their SNA support.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call USAC's Customer Service Center at 877-877-4925.

02/07/2005

The FCC Clarifies the Size of the Interstate Access Support (IAS) Mechanism Is Targeted at $650 million (2/7/05)

See Letter from FCC to USAC [PDF, 114kb]