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Notice

Notice of Public Information Collection(s) Being Submitted for Review to the Office of Management and Budget

Summary

The Federal Communications Commission, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork burden, invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on the following information collection(s), as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995, 44 U.S.C. 3501-3520. An agency may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid control number. No person shall be subject to any penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) that does not display a valid control number. Comments are requested concerning (a) whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the Commission's burden estimate; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on the respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

 

Table of Contents Back to Top

DATES: Back to Top

Written Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) comments should be submitted on or before January 5, 2009. If you anticipate that you will be submitting PRA comments, but find it difficult to do so within the period of time allowed by this notice, you should advise the FCC contact listed below as soon as possible.

ADDRESSES: Back to Top

Direct all PRA comments to Nicholas A. Fraser, Office of Management and Budget, (202) 395-5887, or via fax at 202-395-5167 or via the Internet at Nicholas_A._Fraser@omb.eop.gov and to Judith-B. Herman@fcc.gov, Federal Communications Commission, or an e-mail to PRA@fcc.gov. To view a copy of this information collection request (ICR) submitted to OMB: (1) Go to the Web page http://reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAMain, (2) look for the section of the Web page called “Currently Under Review”, (3) click on the downward-pointing arrow in the “Select Agency” box below the “Currently Under Review” heading, (4) select “Federal Communications Commission” from the list of agencies presented in the “Select Agency” box, (5) click the “Submit” button to the right of the “Select Agency” box, and (6) when the list of FCC ICRs currently under review appears, look for the title of this ICR (or its OMB Control Number, if there is one) and then click on the ICR Reference Number to view detailed information about this ICR.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Back to Top

For additional information or copies of the information collection(s), contact Judith B. Herman at 202-418-0214 or via the Internet at Judith-B.Herman@fcc.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Back to Top

OMB Control Number: 3060-0816.

Title: Local Telephone Competition and Broadband Reporting (Report and Order, WC Docket No. 07-38, FCC 08-89; Order on Reconsideration, WC Docket No. 07-38, FC 08-148).

Form No.: FCC Form 477.

Type of Review: Revision of a currently approved collection.

Respondents: Business or other for-profit, not-for-profit institutions, and state, local or tribal government.

Number of Respondents: 1,610 respondents; 3,220 responses.

Estimated Time per Response: 337 hours (average).

Frequency of Response: Semi-annual reporting requirement.

Obligation to Respond: Mandatory. Statutory authority for this information collection is contained in 47 U.S.C. Sections 4(i), 201, 218-220, 251-252, 271, 303(r), 332 and 403 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended; as well as Section 706 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, 47 U.S.C. Section 157nt.

Total Annual Burden: 1,085,140 hours.

Total Annual Cost: N/A.

Privacy Act Impact Assessment: N/A.

Nature and Extent of Confidentiality: The Commission will continue to allow respondents to certify, on the first page of each submission, that some data contained in that submission are privileged or confidential, commercial or financial information and that disclosure of such information would likely cause substantial harm to the competitive position of the entity making the submission. If the Commission receives a request for, or proposes to disclose the information, the respondent would be required to make a full showing pursuant to the Commission's rules for withholding from public inspection information submitted to the Commission. The Commission will retain its current policies and procedures regarding the confidential treatment of submitted FCC Form 477 data, including use only of aggregated, non-company specific data in its published reports. The Commission will, however, continue its current practice of publishing most of the local telephone information reported by the Bell Operating Companies (BOCs) after consultation with the individual companies.

Needs and Uses: The Commission will submit this information collection (IC) to the OMB as a revision during this comment period to obtain the full three-year clearance from them. The Commission is reporting an increase of 956,340 hours to the total annual burden. This program change increase is due to an increase in the estimated number of respondents and responses since this IC was last submitted to the OMB in June 2008.

The Commission is submitting two rulemakings to the OMB for approval. The first is a Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in WC Docket No. 07-38, FCC 08-89 and the second is an Order on Reconsideration in WC Docket No. 07-38, FCC 08-148.

With these two Orders, the Commission revises the FCC Form 477 data collection to improve the Commission's understanding of the extent of broadband deployment, facilitating the development of appropriate broadband policies. In particular, these amendments will improve the Commission's ability to carry out its obligation under section 706 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 to “determine whether advanced telecommunications capability is being deployed to all Americans in a reasonable and timely fashion.”

The Report and Order revises the FCC Form 477 to require all broadband providers to report the number of broadband connections in service in individual Census Tracts. The Report and Order adopts three additional changes to FCC Form 477. First, it requires providers to report broadband service speed data in conjunction with subscriber counts according to new categories for download and upload speeds. These new speed tiers will better identify services that support advanced applications. Second, it amends reporting requirements for mobile wireless broadband providers to require them to report the number of subscribers whose data plans allow them to browse the Internet and access the lawful Internet content of their choice. Third, it requires providers of interconnected Voice over Internet Protocol (interconnected VoIP) service to report subscribership information on FCC Form 477.

The Order on Reconsideration amends FCC Form 477 to require filers to report the percentage of broadband connections that are residential at the Census Tract level.

The Telecommunications Act of 1996 directs the Commission to take actions to open all telecommunications markets to competition and to seek to promote innovation and investment by all participants, including new entrants. A central task in creating this framework is the opening of previously monopolized local telecommunications markets. By collecting timely and reliable information about the pace and extent of competition for local telephony service in different geographic areas—including rural areas—the Commission significantly improves the ability to evaluate the effectiveness of actions the Commission and the states are taking to facilitate economic competition in those markets. The Report and Order provides for additional methods to supplement the data reported by FCC Form 477 filers, including a voluntary self-reporting system, and a recommendation to the Census Bureau that the American Community Survey questionnaire be modified to gather information about broadband availability and subscription in households.

The information is used by the Commission to prepare reports that help inform consumers and policy makers at the federal and state level of the development of competition in the local telephone service market and the deployment of broadband services. The Commission will continue to use the information to better inform its understanding of broadband deployment in conjunction with its congressionally mandated section 706 reports. The Commission also uses the data to support its analyses in a variety of rulemaking proceedings under the Communications Act of 1934, as amended. Absent this information collection, the Commission would lack essential data for assisting it in determining the effectiveness of its policies and fulfilling its statutory responsibilities in accordance with the Communications Act of 1934, as amended.

Federal Communications Commission.

Marlene H. Dortch,

Secretary.

[FR Doc. E8-28755 Filed 12-3-08; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6712-01-P

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