Telecom Business Alert -- Vol. VII Issue 35

Date: Sep 07, 2010

Coalition of Concerned Utilities Seeks Reconsideration of FCC Pole Attachment Order

On September 2, 2010, Keller and Heckman's client, the Coalition of Concerned Utilities (Allegheny Power, Baltimore Gas and Electric Co., Dayton Power and Light Co., First Energy Corp., National Grid, NSTAR, PPL Electric Utilities, South Dakota Electric Utilities and Wisconsin Public Service Company), filed a petition for reconsideration of the FCC's May 2010 pole attachment Order. In the petition, the Coalition requested that the FCC reconsider its Order and clarify its final rules as follows: (i) apply the nondiscrimination requirement only to the extent that a pole owner allows itself or others to use boxing, bracketing and other attachment techniques for communications wires in the communications space; (ii) permit a pole owner to impose new boxing and extension arm requirements regardless of what it may have allowed in the past; and (iii) permit owners of jointly-owned poles (e.g. an ILEC and electric utility) to limit the extent to which boxing, bracketing and other attachment techniques are permitted on their jointly-owned poles.

FCC Extends Reply Comment Deadline in Pole Attachment Rulemaking Proceeding

Last week, at the request of electric utility groups, the FCC extended until October 4, 2010, the deadline for filing reply comments in its Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking regarding pole attachments. The FCC agreed to provide additional time because "the rates, terms, and conditions of pole attachments present a wide variety of complex issues, and the comments filed include a number of new proposals." Please contact Tom Magee (202.434.4128; magee@khlaw.com) with questions. FCC Open Internet Proceeding and Industry Discussions Continue in Parallel Discussions among technology companies and network operators (Verizon, AT&T and the cable operators) to achieve consensus on net neutrality rules continue in parallel with the FCC's Open Internet rulemaking proceeding. Possibly in response to the Google-Verizon net neutrality "agreement," the FCC issued a Public Notice on September 1, 2010, requesting further comment on (1) "specialized services" which, generally speaking, rely on IP technology and the Internet backbone for transport, but are not generally accessible and will be available only upon additional payment, and (2) whether wireless broadband should be excluded from net neutrality obligations. Keller and Heckman Offers Insights into 2.1 GHz Relocation Negotiations

Keller and Heckman Partner Doug Jarrett published an article in Mission Critical Magazine last week offering his insights into the 2.1 GHz relocation negotiations. The Article is available by clicking here. Please contact Doug Jarrett (202.434.4180; jarrett@khlaw.com) with questions.

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