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Domestic Section 214 Transfer of Control of Niagara Telephone Company

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Released: November 27, 2013
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PUBLIC NOTICE

Federal Communications Commission

News Media Information 202 / 418-0500

Internet: http://www.fcc.gov

TTY: 1-888-835-5322

445 12th St., S.W.

Washington, D.C. 20554

DA 13-2287

Released: November 27, 2013

DOMESTIC SECTION 214 APPLICATION FILED FOR THE TRANSFER OF CONTROL OF

NIAGARA TELEPHONE COMPANY AND BORDERLAND COMMUNICATIONS, LLC

TO NORTHEAST COMMUNICATIONS OF WISCONSIN, INC.

D/B/A NSIGHT TELSERVICES

NON-STREAMLINED PLEADING CYCLE ESTABLISHED

WC Docket No. 13-283

Comments Due: December 11, 2013

Reply Comments Due: December 18, 2013

On November 20, 2013, the Shareholders of Niagara Telephone Company (Niagara) and

Northeast Communications of Wisconsin, Inc. d/b/a Nsight Telservices (Nsight) (collectively, Applicants)

filed an application pursuant to section 63.03 of the Commission’s rules1 to transfer control of Niagara

and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Borderland Communications, LLC (Borderland), from Niagara’s

current shareholders to Nsight.

Niagara, a Wisconsin corporation, is an incumbent local exchange carrier (LEC) serving

approximately 3,200 access lines in the following Wisconsin Counties: Marinette and Florence.

Niagara’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Borderland, a Wisconsin limited liability company, provides

competitive LEC services to approximately 80 access lines in Dickinson County, Michigan. Borderland

also provides resold interstate services to customers located in the Niagara and Borderland local exchange

service areas. Borderland does not provide competitive LEC services in Wisconsin. Niagara’s wholly-

owned subsidiary, Niagara Wireless, LLC, a Wisconsin limited liability company, holds a number of

wireless licenses covering parts of Wisconsin and Michigan.2

Nsight, a Wisconsin corporation, is a holding company and the parent company and 100 percent

owner of (1) Northeast Telephone Company, LLC, a Wisconsin limited liability company and incumbent

LEC serving approximately 4,700 access lines in the following Wisconsin Counties: Brown, Oconto,

1

47 C.F.R § 63.03; see 47 U.S.C. § 214. Applicants are also filing an application for transfer of control associated

with authorization for international services. Any action on this domestic section 214 application is without

prejudice to Commission action on other related, pending applications. Applicants filed supplements to their

domestic section 214 application on November 26, 2013.

2 Applicants state that Niagara Wireless, LLC is not part of the proposed transaction.

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Outagamie, and Shawano; (2) Bayland Telephone, LLC, a Wisconsin limited liability company and

incumbent LEC serving approximately 1,700 access lines in Oconto County, Wisconsin; (iii) NET LEC,

LLC, Brown County CLEC, LLC, and Bayland Communications, LLC, each being a Wisconsin limited

liability company that serve in combination approximately 5,500 access lines and provide competitive

LEC services predominately to business customers in the following Wisconsin Counties: Brown,

Outagamie, Oconto, and Winnebago. None of these companies provide LEC services in Michigan.

Applicants state that the only entity that will own at least 10 percent of the equity of Niagara after

consummation of the transaction is Northeast Communications of Wisconsin, Inc., a Wisconsin

corporation. The following U.S. citizens and U.S. based entity own at least 10 percent of Nsight’s equity:

Patrick D. Riordan (14.98 percent); Robert H. Riordan (11.32 percent), and Tailwind Capital Partners

(13.64 percent).

Applicants state that Nsight provides wireless service over a portion of Niagara’s telephone

exchange service area via its Wisconsin RSA No. 4 Limited Partnership. They further state that Nsight,

via Nsight Spectrum, LLC, has a PCS license that serves the area in which Borderland provides service.

Other than the wireless overlap, neither Niagara and Nsight nor their respective affiliated companies have

overlapping telephone exchange service areas or adjacent telephone exchange service areas. Because this

transaction is more complex than usual, in order to analyze whether the proposed transaction would serve

the public interest, this application will not be streamlined.3

Applicants state that the proposed transaction will be accomplished in two steps with the result

that all of the issued and outstanding common stock of Niagara will be owned by Nsight. Applicants

assert that the proposed transaction will serve the public interest because Nsight is an established rural

telecommunications provider that will ensure Niagara’s customers continue to receive high quality

services at affordable rates.

Domestic Section 214 Application Filed for the Transfer of Control of Niagara Telephone

Company and Borderland Communications, LLC to Northeast Communications of Wisconsin,

Inc. d/b/a Nsight Teleservices, WC Docket No. 13-283 (filed Nov. 20, 2013).

GENERAL INFORMATION

The transfer of control identified herein has been found, upon initial review, to be

acceptable for filing as a non-streamlined application. The Commission reserves the right to

return any transfer application if, upon further examination, it is determined to be defective and

not in conformance with the Commission’s rules and policies. Pursuant to section 63.03(a) of the

Commission’s rules, 47 CFR § 63.03(a), interested parties may file comments on or before

December 11, 2013, and reply comments on or before December 18, 2013. Pursuant to section

63.52 of the Commission’s rules, 47 C.F.R. § 63.52, commenters must serve a copy of comments

on the Applicants no later than the above comment filing date.

Pursuant to section 63.03 of the Commission’s rules, 47 CFR § 63.03, parties to this

proceeding should file any documents in this proceeding using the Commission’s Electronic

Comment Filing System (ECFS): http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs2/.

In addition, e-mail one copy of each pleading to each of the following:

1)

Myrva.Charles, Competition Policy Division, Wireline Competition Bureau,

myrva.charles@fcc.gov;

3 47 C.F.R. § 63.03(b), (c)(1)(v).

2

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2)

Jodie May, Competition Policy Division, Wireline Competition Bureau, jodie.may@fcc.gov;

3)

David Krech, Policy Division, International Bureau, david.krech@fcc.gov; and

4)

Jim Bird, Office of General Counsel, jim.bird@fcc.gov.

People with Disabilities: To request materials in accessible formats for people with disabilities

(braille, large print, electronic files, audio format), send an e-mail to fcc504@fcc.gov or call the

Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau at (202) 418-0530 (voice), (202) 418-0432 (tty).

The proceeding in this Notice shall be treated as a “permit-but-disclose” proceeding in

accordance with the Commission’s ex parte rules. Persons making ex parte presentations must file a

copy of any written presentation or a memorandum summarizing any oral presentation within two

business days after the presentation (unless a different deadline applicable to the Sunshine period applies).

Persons making oral ex parte presentations are reminded that memoranda summarizing the presentation

must (1) list all persons attending or otherwise participating in the meeting at which the ex parte

presentation was made, and (2) summarize all data presented and arguments made during the

presentation. If the presentation consisted in whole or in part of the presentation of data or arguments

already reflected in the presenter’s written comments, memoranda or other filings in the proceeding, the

presenter may provide citations to such data or arguments in his or her prior comments, memoranda, or

other filings (specifying the relevant page and/or paragraph numbers where such data or arguments can be

found) in lieu of summarizing them in the memorandum. Documents shown or given to Commission

staff during ex parte meetings are deemed to be written ex parte presentations and must be filed consistent

with rule 1.1206(b), 47 C.F.R. § 1.1206(b). Participants in this proceeding should familiarize themselves

with the Commission’s ex parte rules.

For further information, please contact Myrva Charles at (202) 418-1506 or Jodie May at

(202) 418-0913.

- FCC -

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