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Notice

Information Collections Being Reviewed by the Federal Communications Commission

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Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Federal Communications Commission.

ACTION:

Notice and request for comments.

SUMMARY:

As part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork burdens, and as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on the following information collections. Comments are requested concerning: Whether the proposed collection of Start Printed Page 6949information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information shall have practical utility; the accuracy of the Commission's burden estimate; ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; 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; and ways to further reduce the information collection burden on small business concerns with fewer than 25 employees.

The FCC may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number. No person shall be subject to any penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information subject to the PRA that does not display a valid OMB control number.

DATES:

Written comments should be submitted on or before April 6, 2020. If you anticipate that you will be submitting comments, but find it difficult to do so within the period of time allowed by this notice, you should advise the contacts below as soon as possible.

ADDRESSES:

Direct all PRA comments to Cathy Williams, FCC, via email: PRA@fcc.gov and to Cathy.Williams@fcc.gov.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For additional information about the information collection, contact Cathy Williams at (202) 418-2918.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

As part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork burdens, and as required by the PRA, 44 U.S.C. 3501-3520, the FCC invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on the following information collections. Comments are requested concerning: 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; the accuracy of the Commission's burden estimate; ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; 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; and ways to further reduce the information collection burden on small business concerns with fewer than 25 employees.

OMB Control Number: 3060-0798.

Title: FCC Application for Radio Service Authorization; Wireless Telecommunications Bureau; Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau.

Form Number: FCC Form 601.

Type of Review: Revision of a currently approved collection.

Respondents: Individuals and households; Business or other for-profit entities; Not-for-profit institutions; and State, local or tribal governments.

Number of Respondents and Responses: 255,352 respondents and 255,352 responses.

Estimated Time per Response: 0.5-1.25 hours.

Frequency of Response: Recordkeeping requirement, third party disclosure requirement, on occasion reporting requirement and periodic reporting requirement.

Obligation to Respond: Required to obtain or retain benefits. The statutory authority for this collection of information is contained in 47 U.S.C. 151, 152, 154, 154(i), 155(c), 157, 201, 202, 208, 214, 301, 302a, 303, 307, 308, 309, 310, 311, 314, 316, 319, 324, 331, 332, 333, 336, 534, 535 and 554.

Total Annual Burden: 222,055 hours.

Total Annual Cost: $71,306,250.

Privacy Impact Assessment: Yes.

Nature and Extent of Confidentiality: In general, there is no need for confidentiality with this collection of information.

Needs and Uses: FCC Form 601 is a consolidated, multi-part application form that is used for market-based and site-based licensing for wireless telecommunications services, including public safety licenses, which are filed through the Commission's Universal Licensing System (ULS). FCC Form 601 is composed of a main form that contains administrative information and a series of schedules used for filing technical and other information. This form is used to apply for a new license, to amend or withdraw a pending application, to modify or renew an existing license, cancel a license, request a duplicate license, submit required notifications, request an extension of time to satisfy construction requirements, or request an administrative update to an existing license (such as mailing address change), request a Special Temporary Authority or Developmental License. Respondents are encouraged to submit FCC Form 601 electronically and are required to do so when submitting FCC Form 601 to apply for an authorization for which the applicant was the winning bidder in a spectrum auction.

The data collected on FCC Form 601 includes the FCC Registration Number (FRN), which serves as a “common link” for all filings an entity has with the FCC. The Debt Collection Improvement Act of 1996 requires entities filing with the Commission to use an FRN.

On August 3, 2017, the Commission released the WRS Reform Second Report and Order in which it consolidated the hodgepodge of service-specific renewal and permanent discontinuance rules into consolidated Part 1 rules, 1.949 and 1.953, respectively (See Amendment of Parts 1, 22, 24, 27, 74, 80, 90, 95, and 101 To Establish Uniform License Renewal, Discontinuance of Operation, and Geographic Partitioning and Spectrum Disaggregation Rules and Policies for Certain Wireless Radio Services, Second Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, FCC 17-105, (WRS Reform Second Report and Order)). Of relevance to the information collection at issue here, the Commission established a consistent standard for renewing wireless licenses and set forth safe harbors providing expedited renewal for licensees that meet their initial term construction requirement and remain operating at or above that level. In addition, the Commission adopted consistent service continuity rules, which provide for automatic termination of any license on which a licensee permanently discontinues service or operation.

The Commission now seeks approval for revisions to its currently approved collection of information under OMB Control Number 3060-0798 to permit (1) the collection of renewal-related information for Wireless Radio Service (WRS) licenses, and (2) the filing of requests to extend a permanent discontinuance period for good cause. Regarding renewal of WRS licenses, § 1.949(d) of the Commission's rules requires an applicant for renewal of certain WRS licenses to meet the Renewal Standard, i.e., the applicant must demonstrate that over the course of the license term, the licensee provided and continues to provide service to the public, or operated and continues to operate the license to meet the licensee(s)' private, internal communications needs. A renewal applicant can meet the Renewal Standard by certifying compliance with one of the safe harbors enumerated in § 1.949(e) of the Commission's rules, or, if the applicant cannot satisfy the requirements of one of the safe harbors, the applicant must make a Renewal Showing consistent with § 1.949(f). In addition, a renewal applicant must make a Regulatory Compliance Certification certifying that it has substantially complied with all applicable FCC rules, policies, and the Start Printed Page 6950Communications Act of 1934, as amended. If an applicant is unable to make this substantial compliance certification, it will need to provide an explanation of the circumstances preventing such a certification and why renewal of the subject license should still be granted.

We do not anticipate that these revisions will have any impact on the burden to complete FCC Form 601. The renewal process remains virtually unchanged for site-based licensees, which will continue to have streamlined processes for renewal under the safe harbors adopted in the WRS Reform Second Report and Order. For licensees which had to make renewal showings under the Commissions' prior, service-specific renewal rules, including 700 MHz Commercial Services, 600 MHz Service, H-Block Service, AWS-3, AWS-4, and 218-219 MHz Service, the rules now provide for streamlined renewal processes under the safe harbor provisions in § 1.949(e), which minimize the burdens on such licensees. The Commission expects that most licensees will be able to avail themselves of the streamlined safe harbor process.

Although some licensees will be required to make a renewal showing, on balance, we believe there will be no increase in the overall annual burden to complete the form. Further, the Commission's experience with requests to extend the discontinuance period for licensees in the cellular service leads us to anticipate few, if any, such requests will be filed under our new rules. Specifically, we are unaware of any requests to extend a cellular discontinuance period. Thus, we believe there will be a negligible, if any, impact on the annual burden to complete the form.

The Commission therefore seeks approval for a revision to its currently approved information collection on FCC Form 601 to revise FCC Form 601 accordingly.

OMB Control Number: 3060-0800.

Title: FCC Application for Assignments of Authorization and Transfers of Control: Wireless Telecommunications Bureau and Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau.

Form Number: FCC Form 603.

Type of Review: Revision of a currently approved collection.

Respondents: Business or other for-profit entities, Individuals or households, not-for-profit institutions, and State, Local or Tribal Governments.

Number of Respondents and Responses: 2,447 respondents; 2,447 responses.

Estimated Time per Response: 0.5 hours-1.75 hours.

Frequency of Response: Recordkeeping requirement, on occasion reporting requirement and periodic reporting requirement.

Obligation to Respond: Required to obtain or retain benefits. The statutory authority for this collection is contained in 47 U.S.C. 154, 155, 158, 161, 301, 303(r), 308, 309, 310 and 332.

Total Annual Burden: 2,759 hours.

Annual Cost Burden: $366,975.

Privacy Act Impact Assessment: Yes.

Nature and Extent of Confidentiality: In general, there is no need for confidentiality with this collection of information.

Needs and Uses: FCC Form 603 is a multi-purpose form that is used by radio services in Wireless Services within the Universal Licensing System (ULS). FCC 603 is composed of a main form that contains the administrative information and a series of schedules used for filing technical information. These schedules are required when applying for Auctioned Services, Partitioning and Disaggregation, Undefined Geographical Area Partitioning, and Notification of Consummation or Request for Extension of Time for Consummation. Applicants/licensees in the Public Mobile Services, Personal Communications Services, Private Land Mobile Radio Services, Broadband Radio Service, Educational Broadband Service, Maritime Services (excluding Ship), and Aviation Services (excluding Aircraft) use FCC Form 603 to apply for an assignment or transfer, to establish their parties' basic eligibility and qualifications, to classify the filing, and/or to determine the nature of the proposed service. This form is also used to notify the FCC of consummated assignments and transfers of wireless licenses to which the Commission has previously consented or for which notification but not prior consent is required. Respondents are encouraged to submit FCC 603 electronically.

The data collected on FCC 603 include the FCC Registration Number (FRN), which serves as a “common link” for all filings an entity has with the FCC. The Debt Collection Improvement Act of 1996 required that those filing with the Commission to use an FRN, effective December 3, 2001.

Records may include information about individuals or households, e.g., personally identifiable information or PII, and the use(s) and disclosure of this information are governed by the requirements of a system of records notice or `SORN', FCC/WTB-1, “Wireless Services Licensing Records.” There are no additional impacts under the Privacy Act.

On August 3, 2017, the Commission released the WRS Reform Second Report and Order in which it consolidated the hodgepodge of service-specific geographic partitioning and spectrum disaggregation rules into a consolidated Part 1 rule, 1.950 (See Amendment of Parts 1, 22, 24, 27, 74, 80, 90, 95, and 101 To Establish Uniform License Renewal, Discontinuance of Operation, and Geographic Partitioning and Spectrum Disaggregation Rules and Policies for Certain Wireless Radio Services, Second Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, FCC 17-105, (WRS Reform Second Report and Order)). Of relevance to the information collection at issue here, the Commission required that when portions of geographic licenses are sold, both parties to the transaction have a clear construction obligation and penalty in the event of failure.

Specifically, § 1.950(c) requires parties seeking approval for geographic partitioning, spectrum disaggregation, or a combination of both must apply for a partial assignment of authorization by filing FCC Form 603 pursuant to § 1.948 of the Commission's rules. Each request for geographic partitioning must include an attachment defining the perimeter of the partitioned area by geographic coordinates to the nearest second of latitude and longitude, based upon the 1983 North American Datum (NAD83). Alternatively, applicants may specify an FCC-recognized service area (e.g., Basic Trading Area, Economic Area, Major Trading Area, Metropolitan Service Area, or Rural Service Area), county, or county equivalent, in which case, applicants need only list the specific FCC-recognized service area, county, or county equivalent names comprising the partitioned area. Additionally, applicants have the option to submit geographic data associated with applications to partition and/or disaggregate their license using a shapefile, KML or Geojson file format.

In addition, § 1.950(d) requires applicants for geographic partitioning, spectrum disaggregation, or a combination of both, to include, if applicable, a certification with their partial assignment of authorization application stating which party will meet any incumbent relocation requirements, except as otherwise stated in service-specific rules. Further, § 1.950(g) provides parties to geographic partitioning, spectrum disaggregation, or a combination of both, with two options to satisfy service-specific performance requirements (i.e., construction and operation requirements). Under the first option, each party may certify that it will individually satisfy any service-Start Printed Page 6951specific requirements and, upon failure, must individually face any service-specific performance penalties. Under the second option, both parties may agree to share responsibility for any service-specific requirements. Upon failure to meet their shared service-specific performance requirements, both parties will be subject to any service-specific penalties. The Commission seeks approval for revisions to its currently approved collection of information under OMB Control Number 3060-0800 to permit the collection of the additional information in connection with partial assignments of authorizations for geographic partitioning, spectrum disaggregation, or a combination of both, pursuant to the rules and information collection requirements adopted by the Commission in the WRS Reform Second Report and Order. We do not anticipate that these revisions will impact the collection filing burden.

Start Signature

Federal Communications Commission.

Marlene Dortch,

Secretary, Office of the Secretary.

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[FR Doc. 2020-02344 Filed 2-5-20; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6712-01-P