Carriers Want Changes to FCC’s Pricing Regulations Proposal

Several carriers filed a motion to strike the “flawed” data framework underlying the Federal Communications Commission’s proposal that would alter business data services.

“We are extremely concerned that the FCC’s latest business broadband proposal is now based on fatally flawed data that, unless corrected and updated, could have serious economic consequences for the business broadband market,” CenturyLink Senior Vice President for Public Policy and Government Relations John F. Jones said in a statement. “We’re asking the FCC to rescind the affected portions of its proposal and update its data before pronouncing judgment on what is or isn’t competitive.”

CenturyLink was joined by AT&T Inc., Cincinnati Bell Inc., Consolidated Communications Inc., FairPoint Communications Inc. and Frontier Communications in filing the motion, which says the FCC’s proposal is a positive step toward deregulating competitive areas, but that the regulations should be backed by factual data.

Major cable providers did not clearly or fully report that they were able to provide business data services using metro Ethernet in 22 times more census blocks than were reflected by the original data in 2013, according to the motion.

The FCC in April voted to ban certain contractual practices with historically entrenched companies like AT&T and Verizon. The agency voted 3-2 on party lines for a new regulatory framework for the “special access” market, the bulk data that connects everything from retail outlets and ATM machines to cell towers.