Wireline Competition Bureau Seeks Comment on Petition for Declaratory Ruling Regarding Payphone Compensation Rules


The FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau is seeking comment on a Petition for Declaratory Ruling filed by GCB Communications, Inc. d/b/a Pacific Communications and Lake Country Communications, Inc.  (collectively, “GCB”) regarding the FCC’s payphone compensation rules.  GCP filed the Petition on August 9, 2011.  Currently GCB is involved in a payphone compensation dispute before the United States District Court for the District of Arizona.  On July 6, 2011, the District Court issued an Order referring the following payphone compensation issue to the FCC for resolution:

“If the Payphone Service Provider (‘PSP’) has ordered a payphone line from the serving Local Exchange Carrier (‘LEC’), is the completing carrier obligated to pay the PSP per-call compensation for completed coinless calls made from that payphone line, and the PSP has no responsibility for the transmission and receipt of payphone-specific coding digits by the carriers in the call path[?]”

In its Petition for Declaratory Ruling, GCB asks the Bureau to act on the District Court’s referral.  The outcome of this proceeding is likely to have material implications for service providers qualified as “completing carriers” under the Commission’s payphone compensation rules.  Whether your company compensates payphone service providers pursuant to an audited Call Tracking System or alternate compensation arrangements, the proceeding warrants close monitoring.

Comments and Reply Comments on the GCB Petition are due on or September 30, 2011 and October 17, 2011, respectively.

Clients with questions regarding this advisory should contact the attorney assigned to their account.

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