Today, the FCC is holding its last Open Meeting of the summer. Here is the agenda. The meeting will first consider a Public Notice to establish two new Innovation Zones for experimental licenses in Boston, MA and Raleigh, NC to study wireless technology use cases and test integration with new technologies. The FCC will next consider a Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“FNPRM”) that would propose to adopt clarifications and revisions to the agency’s numbering rules, including requiring additional certifications and ownership disclosures for authorization of direct numbering access. The Commission will also hear a Third Report and Order that would authorize the agency’s private Governance Authority overseeing the STIR/SHAKEN framework to review and revoke a voice service provider’s participation in STIR/SHAKEN. The Order would further establish an appeals process and procedures for providers affected by a revocation. Additionally, the FCC will consider a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“NPRM”) that would update the compensation methodology for the Internet Protocol Relay (“IP Relay), a form of Telecommunications Relay Service. Lastly, the FCC will consider an NPRM proposing to update the agency’s political programming rules, followed by a Memorandum Opinion and Order on Reconsideration that would grant three petitions for reconsideration of the Part 95 Personal Radio Services Rules Report and Order.
You will find more information about the most significant items after the break.
Appeals of STIR/SHAKEN Revocation Decisions – The Third Report and Order (“Order”) would establish a process for the FCC’s private Governance Authority that oversees the STIR/SHAKEN framework to review and revoke the ability of a voice service provider to participate in STIR/SHAKEN. The Order would also create an appeals process for voice service providers to challenge any revocation decisions, modeled on the established appeals process and procedures for reviewing decisions by the Universal Service Administrative Company (“USAC”). Voice service providers affected by a revocation could file a request for review with the FCC, and third parties would be permitted to file oppositions and replies to the request in ECFS.
Establishing Two New Innovation Zones – The Public Notice would approve the creation of two new Innovation Zones for experimental licenses in Boston, MA (Northeastern University) and Raleigh, NC (NC State University), and would expand the geographical boundary of the Innovation Zone in New York City. Innovation Zones allow experimental licensees to conduct unrelated experiments at designated locations without requiring explicit FCC approval. The NC State Innovation Zone would be intended to study new use cases for advanced wireless technologies emerging in unmanned aerial systems (“UAS”), while the Northeastern Innovation Zone would allow researchers to use the Colosseum wireless network emulator to extend and accelerate research in wireless networked systems. The two Innovation Zones would also promote platforms to test the integration of Open Radio Access Networks (Open RAN). Both Innovation Zones would be established for a renewable period of five years.
Updating FCC Numbering Policies – The Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking would adopt clarifications and revisions to the Commission’s numbering rules, consistent with the Congressional directives in the TRACED Act. The FNPRM would propose to require additional certifications as part of the direct access application to numbering resources and would require disclosures of foreign ownership information of applicants, proposing to refer applicants with 10% or greater foreign ownership to the Executive Branch agencies. It would also require direct access authorization holders to more frequently update the FCC of any ownership changes, and would seek comment on expanding the direct access to numbers authorization process to one-way VoIP providers or other entities using numbers.
Updating TRS Compensation – The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking would propose changes to the compensation methodology for the Internet Protocol Relay, a form of Telecommunications Relay Service (“TRS”) that allows an individual with a hearing or speech disability to communicate with voice telephone users by transmitting text via the Internet. The NPRM would propose to modify the compensation methodology to permit recovery of reasonable costs of outreach and operating margins, and would seek comment on permitting recovery of indirect overhead costs. It would also propose to calculate the base compensation level using projected costs and demand over a multi-year compensation period. The NPRM further would seek comment on a proposed potential hybrid compensation model that would rely in part on compensation for state-program relay service.