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Resp. to Allband Pet. for Reh'g - In re: FCC 11-161 (10th Cir.)

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Released: August 7, 2014
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Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 1

IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS

FOR THE TENTH CIRCUIT

NO. 11-9900

IN RE: FCC 11-161

ON PETITION FOR REVIEW OF AN ORDER OF THE

FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION

RESPONSE OF THE FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION AND THE UNITED STATES OF

AMERICA TO THE PETITION FOR REHEARING EN BANC OF ALLBAND COMMUNICATIONS

COOPERATIVE AS TO ISSUES RAISED IN THE ADDITIONAL UNIVERSAL SERVICE FUND ISSUES

BRIEFS

WILLIAM J. BAER

JONATHAN B. SALLET

ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL

GENERAL COUNSEL

ROBERT B. NICHOLSON

DAVID M. GOSSETT

ROBERT J. WIGGERS

ACTING DEPUTY GENERAL COUNSEL

ATTORNEYS

JACOB M. LEWIS

UNITED STATES

ASSOCIATE GENERAL COUNSEL

DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE

WASHINGTON, D.C. 20530

RICHARD K. WELCH

DEPUTY ASSOCIATE GENERAL COUNSEL

LAURENCE N. BOURNE

JAMES M. CARR

MAUREEN K. FLOOD

COUNSEL

FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION

WASHINGTON, D.C. 20554

(202) 418-1740

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

TABLE OF AUTHORITIES ........................................................................... ii 

BACKGROUND ............................................................................................... 1 

ARGUMENT .................................................................................................... 6 

CONCLUSION ............................................................................................... 16 

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TABLE OF AUTHORITIES

CASES 

Adler v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 144 F.3d 664 (10th

Cir. 1998) ..................................................................................................... 13

Alenco Commc’ns, Inc. v. FCC, 201 F.3d 608 (5th

Cir. 2000) ..................................................................................................... 15

Alto Eldorado P’ship v. County of Santa Fe, 634

F.3d 1170 (10th Cir. 2011) .......................................................................... 11

Atkins v. Parker, 472 U.S. 115 (1985) ............................................................ 12

Bluefield Waterworks & Improvement Co. v. Pub.

Serv. Comm’n of W. Va., 262 U.S. 679 (1923) ........................................... 11

Bowen v. Georgetown Univ. Hosp., 488 U.S. 204

(1988) .......................................................................................................... 10

DirecTV, Inc. v. FCC, 110 F.3d 816 (D.C. Cir.

1997) ............................................................................................................ 10

FCC v. Fox Television Stations, Inc., 132 S. Ct.

2307 (2012) ................................................................................................. 12

FTC v. Standard Oil Co. of California, 449 U.S.

232 (1980) ..................................................................................................... 8

Landgraf v. USI Film Prods., Inc., 511 U.S. 244

(1994) .......................................................................................................... 10

Resolution Trust Corp. v. FSLIC, 25 F.3d 1493

(10th Cir. 1994) ............................................................................................. 9

Rural Cellular Ass’n v. FCC, 588 F.3d 1095 (D.C.

Cir. 2009) ..................................................................................................... 15

Rural Cellular Ass’n v. FCC, 685 F.3d 1083 (D.C.

Cir. 2012) ..................................................................................................... 15

Texas v. United States, 523 U.S. 296 (1998) .................................................... 8

United States v. Winstar, 518 U.S. 839 (1996) .............................................4, 8

Utah v. U.S. Dep’t of Interior, 210 F.3d 1193 (10th

Cir. 2000) ....................................................................................................... 8

Vt. Pub. Serv. Bd. v. FCC, 661 F.3d 54 (D.C. Cir.

2011) ............................................................................................................ 15

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Williamson County Regional Planning Comm’n v.

Hamilton Bank, 473 U.S. 172 (1985) .......................................................... 11

STATUTES 

5 U.S.C. § 553(b) ............................................................................................. 13

47 U.S.C. § 254 ............................................................................................... 13

47 U.S.C. § 254(b)(5) ................................................................................. 4, 15

47 U.S.C. § 254(e) ............................................................................................. 4

REGULATIONS 

47 C.F.R. § 36.621(a)(5) ................................................................................. 12

47 C.F.R. § 54.302 ............................................................................................ 2

ADMINISTRATIVE DECISIONS 

Allband Communications Cooperative Petition for

Waiver of Certain High-Cost Universal Service

Rules, 27 FCC Rcd 8310 (Wireline Comp. Bur.

2012) ..................................................................................................... 2, 3, 4

OTHER AUTHORITIES 

10th Cir. Rule 35.1(A) ....................................................................................... 6

10th Cir. Rule 40.1(A) ....................................................................................... 7

Fed. R. App. P. 35(b)(1)(A) .............................................................................. 6

Fed. R. App. P. 35(b)(1)(B) .............................................................................. 6

Fed. R. App. P. 40(a)(2) .................................................................................... 7

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Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 5

IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS

FOR THE TENTH CIRCUIT

NO. 11-9900

IN RE: FCC 11-161

ON PETITION FOR REVIEW OF AN ORDER OF THE

FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION

RESPONSE OF THE FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION AND THE UNITED

STATES OF AMERICA TO THE PETITION FOR REHEARING EN BANC OF ALLBAND

COMMUNICATIONS COOPERATIVE AS TO ISSUES RAISED IN THE ADDITIONAL

UNIVERSAL SERVICE FUND ISSUES BRIEFS

Pursuant to the panel’s order dated July 10, 2014, respondents Federal

Communications Commission (“FCC”) and United States of America submit

this response to the petition for rehearing en banc filed by Allband

Communications Cooperative (“Allband”). As we explain below, Allband

has not come close to satisfying the stringent standard for rehearing of the

panel’s May 23, 2014 decision. See In re: FCC 11-161, 753 F.3d 1015 (10th

Cir. 2014). The Court therefore should deny Allband’s petition.

BACKGROUND

I.

In the order on review, the FCC comprehensively reformed two

of its largest and most complex regulatory programs: universal service and

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intercarrier compensation. Connect America Fund, 26 FCC Rcd 17663

(2011) (“Order”) (JA at 390). As relevant to Allband’s claims, the Order

adopted reforms to support voice and broadband services more efficiently

through federal universal service subsidies. In particular, to implement

“responsible fiscal limits” on high-cost loop support subsidies, the Order

imposed on all eligible telecommunications carriers a presumptive per-line

loop support cap of $250 per month – to be phased in over three years. See

Order ¶¶274, 279 (JA at 492, 493); 47 C.F.R. § 54.302.

Relatedly, the Order also established a waiver process for carriers that

can demonstrate that “reductions in current support levels would threaten

their financial viability, imperiling service to consumers in the areas they

serve.” Order ¶539 (JA at 566); see generally id. ¶¶539-544 (JA at 566-69).

With respect to waivers of the $250 per-line cap, the FCC specifically warned

carriers that it “d[id] not anticipate granting … waivers” of an “undefined

duration,” but rather “expect[ed] carriers to periodically re-validate any need

for support above the cap.” Id. ¶278 (JA at 493).

II.

Shortly after the Order was released, Allband sought a waiver of

the $250 per-line cap. See Allband Communications Cooperative Petition for

Waiver of Certain High-Cost Universal Service Rules, 27 FCC Rcd 8310

(Wireline Comp. Bur. 2012) (“Allband Waiver Order”). After evaluating

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Allband’s request pursuant to its delegated authority, see Order ¶544 (JA at

569), the FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau (“WCB”) found “good cause

to grant a waiver of [the $250 per-line cap] for three years.” Allband Waiver

Order ¶10. “During this time,” WCB “expect[ed] Allband to actively pursue

any and all cost-cutting and revenue generating measures in order to reduce

its dependency on federal high cost [universal service fund (“USF”)]

support.” Id. ¶14. The Bureau also acknowledged Allband’s assertion that it

had received loans from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Utilities

Service (“RUS”) to aid in constructing its telecommunications facilities, and

that it would not be able to make full annual loan payments without a waiver

of the cap. Id. ¶¶6, 7. WCB noted, however, Allband’s stated “willingness

… to work with RUS to rework its loan terms.” Id. ¶14.

WCB “d[id] not find it to be in the public interest to grant Allband an

unlimited waiver,” as Allband had requested. Allband Waiver Order ¶13.

Rather, “consistent with the Commission’s direction” in the Order, WCB

found that it should “reassess [Allband’s] financial condition to determine

whether a waiver remains necessary in the future.” Id. (citing Order ¶278

(JA at 493)). To that end, WCB set forth the showing Allband would be

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required to make in the event that it seeks further relief at the end of the three-

year waiver period. Id. ¶16.1

III.

On judicial review of the Order, Allband made several attacks

on the $250 per-line cap on high-cost loop support. It asserted that the cap

would effect an unconstitutional taking of its property. Additional Universal

Service Fund Issues Principal Brief (“Br.”) at 33-34. It argued that the rule

violated due process by retroactively reversing USF programs and funding

levels that it had come to rely upon. Br. at 32, 33, 35-36. Allband claimed

that the per-line cap constitutes an unlawful breach of its loan agreement with

RUS, citing United States v. Winstar, 518 U.S. 839 (1996). Br. at 37. It

contended that the cap “should be reversed as applied to Allband based on

estoppel principles.” Br. at 35. And it asserted, finally, that the cap violates

statutory sufficiency principles, Br. at 31 (citing 47 U.S.C. §§ 254(b)(5) &

254(e)), and arbitrarily “fails to recognize that the destructive impacts upon

Allband … are wholly unnecessary to achieve” the Order’s stated goals, Br.

at 35-36.

1 Allband sought full Commission review of the WCB’s Order, asking the

FCC to extend the waiver of the $250 per-line cap until 2026, when

Allband’s RUS loans are scheduled to be fully repaid. Petition of Allband

Communications Cooperative for Waiver of Part 54.302 and the Framework

to Limit Reimbursable Capital and Operating Costs, WC Docket No. 10-90 et

al. (filed Aug. 24, 2012). That petition remains pending before the agency.

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IV.

A panel of this Court rejected each of these claims, several of

which it also found Allband had inadequately briefed. See In re: FCC 11-

161, 753 F.3d at 1089-93 (slip op. at 131-38). With respect to Allband’s

takings/confiscation claim, the panel noted that the FCC’s regulation of USF

subsidies is “not reasonably comparable” to the regulatory “rate-setting”

involved in the cases upon which Allband predicated its argument. Id. at

1091 (slip op. at 135) (emphasis added). In any event, the panel found

Allband’s takings claim to be unripe because it had received a three-year

waiver of the $250 per-line cap and had an opportunity to seek an additional

waiver at the end of that period. Id. at 1091-92 (slip op. at 135).

The panel also rejected Allband’s suggestion – argued both as a matter

of due process and contract law – that it had a legally protected reliance

interest in existing USF subsidy levels; instead, the panel stressed, the FCC

had “never promised Allband or any other carriers that they would continue

to receive USF funding indefinitely.” Id. at 1092 (slip op. at 137). The panel

noted, in any event, that the Commission had taken Allband’s individual

circumstances into effect by issuing the three-year waiver. Id. And it

rejected Allband’s one-sentence estoppel claim as “inadequately briefed” and,

on the merits, baseless. Id. (slip op. at 136-37).

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Finally, the panel credited the FCC’s explanation that “there were

systemic inefficiencies in the existing USF funding system” that justified the

changes the agency had adopted, including the $250 per-line cap. Id. at 1093

(slip op. at 137-38). Accordingly, regardless of Allband’s individual

circumstances – which the waiver otherwise reasonably takes into account –

there was no basis for Allband’s claim that the per-line cap violated the

statute or was arbitrary and capricious. Id.

V.

Allband now seeks rehearing en banc of the panel’s decision –

arguing that the panel overlooked or incorrectly rejected some of its

arguments. See Rehearing Petition at 1-2.

ARGUMENT

The standard for granting rehearing en banc is rigorous: That

extraordinary procedure is reserved for cases in which “the panel decision

conflicts with a decision of the United States Supreme Court or of [this]

court,” Fed. R. App. P. 35(b)(1)(A), or cases involving “one or more

questions of exceptional importance.” Fed. R. App. P. 35(b)(1)(B); see also

10th Cir. Rule 35.1(A) (“A request for en banc consideration is disfavored.”).

Accordingly, this Court rarely grants rehearing – and Allband has entirely

failed to justify rehearing under this stringent standard. In particular, Allband

has established neither an “exceptional” issue to be reconsidered, nor a

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conflict between the panel’s decision and a decision of the Supreme Court or

this Court.2

I.

Allband’s petition fails from the start because its sole challenge

– to the application of the $250 per-line high-cost subsidy cap to its own

particular circumstances – is not ripe for review. Since Allband currently has

a three-year waiver of that cap (and may seek an extension of that waiver),

the cap does not currently apply to Allband at all, and the harms Allband

contends will befall it under the cap are entirely speculative. Thus, even if

the panel had overlooked or misconstrued some point of fact or law in its

decision – and it did not – any such error could not possibly constitute the

type of “exceptional[ly] importan[t]” issue that is a prerequisite to en banc

rehearing.

The panel in this case expressly held that the waiver rendered

Allband’s takings-based challenge to the cap unripe. In re: FCC 11-161, 753

F.3d at 1091-92 (slip op. at 135). Allband’s other substantive challenges to

the cap are unripe for the same reason: Any harm to Allband from the cap is

entirely speculative because the cap currently does not – and may never –

2 Allband does not ask for panel rehearing, but it would not qualify for

relief under that exacting standard either. Panel rehearing is not available

unless “a significant issue has been overlooked or misconstrued by the court.”

10th Cir. Rule 40.1(A); see also Fed. R. App. P. 40(a)(2).

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apply to Allband. “A claim is not ripe for adjudication if,” as here, “it rests

upon contingent future events that may not occur as anticipated, or indeed

may not occur at all.” Texas v. United States, 523 U.S. 296, 300 (1998)

(internal quotation marks omitted); see also Utah v. U.S. Dep’t of Interior,

210 F.3d 1193, 1198 (10th Cir. 2000) (challenges predicated on harms that

were “contingent, not certain or immediate,” were unripe). Finally, although

Allband suggests that the Court should not defer review of the cap because of

the expense of seeking a further waiver (Rehearing Petition at 13), it is well

settled that the potential expense of participating in administrative

proceedings does not satisfy threshold justiciability requirements. See FTC v.

Standard Oil Co. of California, 449 U.S. 232, 243-45 (1980).

II.

On the merits, there is no substance to Allband’s claim that the

panel overlooked or misconstrued issues presented to it.

a. Allband contends that the panel ignored its argument – barely

framed in its opening merits brief (see Br. at 37) – that limiting its subsidy to

$250 per line would breach the government’s contractual obligations.

Rehearing Petition at 8-10 (citing United States v. Winstar Corp., 518 U.S.

839). But although the panel did not cite Winstar, it did expressly address the

argument that Allband presented – specifically citing the page of Allband’s

opening brief that referred to that case. In re: FCC 11-161, 753 F.3d at 1092

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(slip op. at 137) (citing Br. at 37). Winstar and related cases (e.g., Resolution

Trust Corp. v. FSLIC, 25 F.3d 1493 (10th Cir. 1994)) hold that the federal

government may be liable when it breaches a regulatory contract; but the

predicate of such cases is that a regulatory contract, in fact, exists. The panel

correctly found that there was no such contract here, because “the FCC, in its

pre-order USF funding system, never promised Allband or any other carriers

that they would continue to receive USF funding indefinitely.” In re: FCC

11-161, 753 F.3d at 1092 (slip op. at 137); see also id. at 1064 (slip op. at 80)

(the Communications Act does not “guarantee[]” that USF “disbursements

will be the same from year to year”).3

Nor does the $250 per-line cap unlawfully abridge any non-contractual

reliance interest on Allband’s part. Contrary to Allband’s repeated assertions,

the per-line cap does not constitute unlawful retroactive rulemaking – i.e., a

rule that “impair[s] rights a party possessed when he acted, increase[s] a

party’s liability for past conduct, or impose[s] new duties with respect to

transactions already completed,” Landgraf v. USI Film Prods., Inc., 511 U.S.

3 As the Commission noted in its response brief, RUS also “did [not] agree

to provide Allband universal service support (indeed, it had no authority to do

so).” Federal Respondents’ Final Response to the Additional Universal

Service Fund Issues Brief of Petitioners at 29. Allband identifies no federal

government contractual commitment – in its loan agreement with RUS, or

elsewhere – that the FCC’s USF reforms could even arguably violate.

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244, 280 (1994). Where the cap regulation applies – and it does not apply to

Allband while it enjoys a waiver – the rule is entirely prospective: It does not

mandate the return of USF disbursements already made, but only potentially

reduces federal subsidies going forward. See In re: FCC 11-161, 753 F.3d at

1072-73 (slip op. at 95-97) (rejecting other petitioners’ retroactivity

arguments).

Moreover, while prospective regulation must give adequate attention to

steps taken in reasonable reliance on prior rules, there is no presumption

against such “secondary” retroactive effects. Bowen v. Georgetown Univ.

Hosp., 488 U.S. 204, 220 (1988) (Scalia, J., concurring); see also DirecTV,

Inc. v. FCC, 110 F.3d 816, 826 (D.C. Cir. 1997). And even if there were

some basis to Allband’s argument that it has a reasonable reliance interest in

the old USF regime that would be negatively affected by immediate

application of the new per-line cap, the panel properly found that “the FCC

has effectively considered Allband’s unique situation by granting Allband’s

petition for waiver and authorizing Allband to seek an additional waiver at

the end of three years.” In re: FCC 11-161, 753 F.3d at 1092 (slip op. at

137).

b. The panel also properly rejected Allband’s insubstantial due process

arguments. With respect to Allband’s “takings-type” claim that the per-line

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cap violates the Due Process Clause, the panel correctly determined that the

claim was “not yet ripe because the FCC has exempted Allband for a period

of three years …, and has also afforded Allband the opportunity to seek an

additional waiver at the end of that time period.” In re: FCC 11-161, 753

F.3d at 1091-92 (slip op. at 135). Under established Supreme Court and

Tenth Circuit precedent, no takings claim is ripe until a party has invoked the

waiver process that the agency made available and been denied. See

Williamson County Regional Planning Comm’n v. Hamilton Bank, 473 U.S.

172, 194 (1985); Alto Eldorado P’ship v. County of Santa Fe, 634 F.3d 1170,

1175-77 (10th Cir. 2011).

On the merits, the panel also reasonably distinguished the takings issue

presented in cases such as Bluefield Waterworks & Improvement Co. v. Pub.

Serv. Comm’n of W. Va., 262 U.S. 679, 690 (1923), from the argument

Allband presented here. Bluefield and similar cases involved the

constitutionality of regulators’ limitations on the rates utilities may charge to

customers, whereas here Allband challenged the level of government

subsidies it could receive. The panel properly found that the subsidy cap

directly at issue here “is not reasonably comparable to a rate-setting order.”

In re: FCC 11-161, 753 F.3d at 1091 (slip op. at 135). Allband’s criticism of

the panel’s statement (id.) that Allband is not a “public utility” does not affect

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the correctness of its holding on the takings question, and presents no

exceptional issue for en banc rehearing. See Rehearing Petition at 12-13.4

In its merits brief, Allband cited FCC v. Fox Television Stations, Inc.,

132 S. Ct. 2307 (2012), to support its contention that the so-called

“benchmarking rule” was impermissibly vague in violation of the Due

Process Clause. See Br. at 32-33.5 The FCC subsequently repealed the

benchmarking rule, and Allband no longer presses its vagueness challenge –

acknowledging that it is moot. See Rehearing Petition at 11 n.5.

Instead, Allband now argues that language in Fox stating that an

existing rule or policy must provide fair notice of what it requires supports a

completely different proposition – i.e., that due process prohibits the

Commission from adopting even an entirely clear and prospective new per-

line cap rule because Allband did not anticipate such a change years earlier.

See Rehearing Petition at 13-14. The vagueness analysis in Fox has no

application to this very different argument. Moreover, although it is of

course true that new rules generally must be preceded by Federal Register

4 Contrary to its apparent assumption (Rehearing Petition at 13-14),

Allband also has no substantive due process right to a particular level of

subsidy. Cf. Atkins v. Parker, 472 U.S. 115, 129 (1985).

5 The benchmarking rule limited reimbursable capital and operating

expenses in the formula used to determine high-cost loop subsidies for rate-

of-return carriers. See Order ¶214 (JA at 470); 47 C.F.R. § 36.621(a)(5).

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notice under the Administrative Procedure Act (see 5 U.S.C. § 553(b)), here

there is no question that the FCC “issued a NPRM and allowed petitioners to

file comments thereto.” In re: FCC 11-161, 753 F.3d at 1091 (slip op. at

134). Allband does not contend that the NPRM failed to provide adequate

notice of the possibility of the $250 per-line cap.6

c. Allband asserts, finally, that the $250 per-line cap on USF high-cost

support is both arbitrary and contrary to the “sufficiency” principles of 47

U.S.C. § 254. See Rehearing Petition at 16-19. These claims also present no

issues for en banc rehearing.

The Commission adopted the cap to establish “responsible fiscal limits

on universal service support,” having determined that greater support levels

“drawn from limited public funds … should not be provided without further

justification.” Order ¶274 (JA at 492). As the panel recognized, such

measures (among others) were designed to address “systemic inefficiencies”

– undisputed by Allband – “in the existing USF funding system that required

6 The panel correctly rejected Allband’s estoppel claim as inadequately

briefed; that argument amounted to a single sentence, without citation or

analysis, in Allband’s opening brief (Br. at 35). See In re: FCC 11-161, 753

F.3d at 1092 (slip op. at 136); see also Adler v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 144

F.3d 664, 679 (10th Cir. 1998) (“Arguments inadequately briefed in the

opening brief are waived.”). In any event, the panel also properly found

Allband’s estoppel argument to be without merit, because the FCC had made

no representation to Allband that could support such a claim. In re: FCC 11-

161, 753 F.3d at 1092 (slip op. at 136-37).

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a complete alteration of that system.” In re: FCC 11-161, 753 F.3d at 1093

(slip op. at 137-38); see, e.g., Order ¶287 (JA at 496) (noting that the USF

reforms are “targeted at eliminating inefficiencies and closing gaps” in the

system). At the same time, the Commission structured its universal service

reforms to mitigate the financial impact on small, rate-of-return carriers like

Allband. Thus, for example, “rate-of-return carriers will not necessarily be

required to build out to and serve the most expensive locations within their

service area,” Order ¶207 (JA at 468), but rather must offer broadband only

upon “reasonable request,” id. ¶¶206-07 (JA at 467-68). The Order also

“exempted the most remote areas” from new broadband service obligations,

id. ¶533 (JA at 564-65), and “provide[d] rate-of-return carriers … access to a

new explicit recovery mechanism,” which guarantees “stable and certain

revenues that the current intercarrier system can no longer provide,” id. ¶291

(JA at 496-97). Finally, the Commission established a waiver process to take

into account the special circumstances of carriers for which application of the

FCC’s general USF rules may be unwarranted. Id. ¶¶278-79 (JA at 493),

539-44 (JA at 566-69).

Surveying the FCC’s overall package of reforms, including the $250

per-line cap, the panel reasonably rejected claims that the Order provides

insufficient support to achieve the purposes of the universal service statute.

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See In re: FCC 11-161, 753 F.3d at 1054-60 (slip op. at 59-72). With respect

to rural carriers, in particular, the panel determined that the Commission’s

analysis was “both reasoned and reasonable” and “entirely consistent with the

overarching universal service principles outlined in 47 U.S.C. § 254(b),

including the principle that ‘[t]here should be specific, predictable and

sufficient Federal and State mechanisms to preserve and advance universal

service.’” Id. at 1071 (slip op. at 92) (quoting 47 U.S.C. § 254(b)(5)).

Allband’s only response to the panel’s reasonable holding essentially

reduces to the claim that, to be lawful, the FCC’s per-line cap must produce

sufficient financial support to carriers everywhere and in all circumstances.

To the contrary, courts repeatedly have held that it is reasonable for the FCC

to rely on a waiver process to address unforeseen shortfalls in USF subsidies

that may arise in specific instances.7 Particularly given that Allband has

successfully invoked such a process here, the panel correctly rejected

Allband’s remaining APA and statutory claims. In re: FCC 11-161, 753 F.3d

at 1092-93 (slip op. at 137-38).

7 See Rural Cellular Ass’n v. FCC, 685 F.3d 1083, 1095 (D.C. Cir. 2012);

Vt. Pub. Serv. Bd. v. FCC, 661 F.3d 54, 65 (D.C. Cir. 2011); Rural Cellular

Ass’n v. FCC, 588 F.3d 1095, 1104 (D.C. Cir. 2009); Alenco Commc’ns, Inc.

v. FCC, 201 F.3d 608, 622 (5th Cir. 2000).

15

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Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 20

CONCLUSION

Because Allband has not satisfied the stringent standard for en banc

rehearing, its petition should be denied.

Respectfully submitted,

WILLIAM J. BAER

JONATHAN B. SALLET

ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL

GENERAL COUNSEL

ROBERT B. NICHOLSON

DAVID M. GOSSETT

ROBERT J. WIGGERS

ACTING DEPUTY GENERAL

ATTORNEYS

COUNSEL

UNITED STATES

JACOB M. LEWIS

DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE

ASSOCIATE GENERAL COUNSEL

WASHINGTON, D.C. 20530

RICHARD K. WELCH

DEPUTY ASSOCIATE GENERAL

COUNSEL

/s/ Laurence N. Bourne

LAURENCE N. BOURNE

JAMES M. CARR

MAUREEN K. FLOOD

COUNSEL

FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS

COMMISSION

WASHINGTON, D.C. 20554

(202) 418-1740

August 7, 2014

16

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Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 21

IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS

FOR THE TENTH CIRCUIT

IN RE: FCC 11-161

NO. 11-9900

CERTIFICATE OF COMPLIANCE

Pursuant to the requirements of Fed. R. App. P. 32(a)(7) and this

Court’s order dated January 15, 2014, I hereby certify that the accompanying

Response of the Federal Communications and the United States of America

to the Petition for Rehearing En Banc of Allband Communications

Cooperative as to Issues Raised in the Additional Universal Service Fund

Issues Briefs in the captioned case contains 3,384 words.

/s/ Laurence N. Bourne

Laurence N. Bourne

Counsel

Federal Communications Commission

Washington, D.C. 20554

(202) 418-1740 (Telephone)

(202) 418-2819 (Fax)

August 7, 2014

image22-00.jpg612x792

Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 22

CERTIFICATE OF DIGITAL SUBMISSION

I, Laurence N. Bourne, hereby certify that with respect to the foregoing:

(1) there are no required privacy redactions to be made per 10th Cir. R. 25.5;

(2) if required to file additional hard copies, that the ECF submission is an

exact copy of those documents;

(3) the digital submission was scanned for viruses with Symantec Endpoint

Protection, version 11.0.7200.1147, updated on August 7, 2014 and

according to the program is free of viruses.

/s/ Laurence N. Bourne

Laurence N. Bourne

Counsel

Federal Communications Commission

Washington, D.C. 20554

(202) 418-1750

image23-00.jpg612x792

Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 23

11-9900

IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS

FOR THE TENTH CIRCUIT

In re: FCC 11-161

CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE

I, Laurence N. Bourne, hereby certify that on August 7, 2014, I electronically filed

the foregoing Response of the Federal Communications Commission and the

United States of America to the Petition for Rehearing En Banc of Allband

Communications Cooperative as to Issues Raised in the Additional Universal

Service Fund Issues Brief with the Clerk of the Court for the United States Court

of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit by using the CM/ECF system. Participants in the

case who are registered CM/ECF users will be served by the CM/ECF system.

Joseph K. Witmer

Charles A. Zdebski

Kathryn G. Sophy

James C. Falvey

Bohdan R. Pankiw

Jennifer E. Lattimore

Shaun A. Sparks

Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott

Pennsylvania PUC

1717 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.

P.O. Box 3265

12th Floor

Harrisburg, PA 17105-3265

Washington, D.C. 20006

Counsel for: Pennsylvania PUC

Counsel for: Core Communications,

Inc.

image24-00.jpg612x792

Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 24

Ernest C. Cooper

David Bergmann

Robert G. Kidwell

3293 Noreen Drive

Mintz Levin Cohn Ferris

Columbus, OH 43221-4568

701 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.

Counsel for: NASUCA

Suite 900

Washington, D.C. 20004

Counsel for: NCTA

Paula Marie Carmody

Christopher J. White

MD Office of People’s Counsel

New Jersey Division of Rate Counsel

Suite 2102

P.O. Box 46005

6 St. Paul Street

Newark, NJ 07101

Baltimore, MD 21202

Counsel for NASUCA

Counsel for: NASUCA

John H. Jones

David A. LaFuria

Office of the Ohio Attorney General

Russell Lukas

180 E. Broad Street, 6th Floor

Todd B. Lantor

Columbus, OH 43215

David L. Nace

Counsel for: PUC of Ohio

Lukas, Nace, Gutierrez & Sachs

Suite 1200

Craig S. Johnson

8300 Greensboro Drive

Johnson & Sporleder

McLean, VA 22102

304 E. High Street

Counsel for: Cellular South,

Suite 200

Inc.,et al.

Jefferson City, MO 65102

Counsel for: Choctaw Telephone

Benjamin H. Dickens, Jr.

Company

Gerard J. Duffy

Mary J. Sisak

David H. Solomon

Robert M. Jackson

Craig E. Gilmore

Blooston & Mordkofsky

Charles L. Keller

2120 L Street, N.W., Suite 300

Wilkinson Barker Knauer, LLP

Washington, D.C. 20037

2300 N Street, N.W., Suite 700

Counsel for: Choctaw Telephone

Washington, D.C. 20037

Company, et al.

Counsel for: T-Mobile USA, Inc.

2

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Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 25

William S. McCollough

David R. Irvine

McColloughHenry, PC

Jenson Stavros & Guelker

1250 South Capital of Texas

747 East South Temple, Suite 130

Highway

Salt Lake City, UT 84102

Suite 2-235

Counsel for: Direct Communications

West Lake Hills, TX 78746

Cedar Valley, LLC, et al.

Counsel for: Halo Wireless, Inc.

Mark J. O’Connor

Heather M. Zachary

E. Ashton Johnston

Elvis Stumbergs

Helen E. Disenhaus

Wilmer Cutler, et al.

Lampert, O’Connor & Johnston, PC

1875 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.

1776 K Street, N.W., Suite 700

Washington, D.C. 20006-1420

Washington, D.C. 20006

Counsel for: AT&T Inc.

Counsel for: The Voice On The Net

Coalition, Inc.

Robert B. Nicholson

Robert J. Wiggers

Christopher M. Heimann

U.S. Department of Justice

Gary L. Phillips

Antitrust Division, Appellate Section

Paul K. Mancini

950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.

AT&T Inc.

Washington, D.C. 20530

1120 20th Street, N.W., Suite 1000

Counsel for: USA

Washington, DC 20036

Counsel for: AT&T

Bridget Asay

State of Vermont office of the

Scott H. Angstreich

Attorney General

Brendan J. Crimmins

109 State Street

Joshua D. Branson

Montpelier, VT 05609

Kellogg, Huber, Hansen, Todd,

Counsel for: Vermont PSB

Evans & Figel, PLLC

1615 M Street, N.W., Suite 400

Washington, D.C. 20036

Counsel for: Verizon

3

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Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 26

Christopher J. Wright

Wiltshire & Grannis LLP

1200 18th Street, N.W.

Washington, D.C. 20036

Counsel for: Level 3

Communications, LLC and Sprint

Nextel Corporation

Thomas Jones

Glenn Richards

David P. Murray

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman

Nirali Patel

2300 N Street, N.W.

Willkie, Farr & Gallagher LLP

Washington, D.C. 20037-1122

1875 K Street, N.W.

Counsel for: The Voice on the Net

Washington, D.C. 20006

Coalition

Counsel for: TW Telecom, Inc.

David E. Mills

Robert A. Long, Jr.

J.G. Harrington

Gerald J. Waldron

Dow Lohnes PLLC

Yaron Dori

1200 Ner Hampshire Avenue, N.W.

Enrique Armijo

Suite 800

Covington & Burling LLP

Washington, D.C. 20036-6802

1201 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.

Counsel for: Cox Communications,

Washington, D.C. 20004-2401

Inc.

Counsel for: CenturyLink, Inc.

Genevieve Morelli

Clare E. Kindall

ITTA

Assistant Attorney General

1101 Vermont Avenue, N.W.

Department Head-Energy

Suite 501

Office of the Attorney General

Washington, D.C. 20005

Ten Franklin Square

Counsel for: ITTA

New Britain, CT 06051

Counsel for Connecticut PURA

4

image27-00.jpg612x792

Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 27

Gregory J. Vogt

Craig S. Johnson

Law Offices of Gergory J. Vogt

Johnson & Sporleder, LLP

2121 Eisenhower Avenue, Suite 200

304 E High Street, Suite 200

Alexandria, VA 22314

P.O. Box 1670

Counsel for: National Exchange

Jefferson City, MO 65102

Carriers Association, Inc.

Counsel for: Choctaw Telephone

Company

Matthew A. Brill

Mark A. Stachiw

Latham & Watkins

MetroPCS Communications, Inc.

555 11th Street, Suite 1000

2250 Lakeside Blvd.

Washington, D.C. 20004

Richardson, TX 75082

Counsel for: Rural Cellular

Counsel for: MetroPCS

Association

Communications, Inc.

Michael B. Wallace

Paul M. Schudel

Rebecca Hawkins

Thomas J. Moorman

Wise Carter Child & Caraway, P.A.

Woods & Aitken LLP

401 E. Capitol Street

301 South 13th Street, Suite 500

Heritage Building, Suite 600

Lincoln, Nebraska 68508

Jackson, MS 39201

Counsel for: Nebraska Rural

Counsel for: Cellular South, Inc.

Independent Companies

Justin W. Kraske

Steven H. Thomas

Montana Public Service

McGuire Craddock & Strother, PC

Commission

2501 N. Harwood, Suite 1800

1701 Prospect Avenue

Dallas, TX 75201

P.O. Box 202601

Counsel for: Halo Wireless

Helena, MT 59620-2601

Counsel for : Monta Public

Service Commission

Michael E. Glover

Walter H. Sargent II, Esq.

Christopher M. Miller

1632 N. Cascade Avenue

Verizon Communications, Inc.

Colorado Springs, CO 80907

1320 N. Courthouse Road, 9th Flr.

Counsel for Transcom Enhanced

Arlington, VA 22201

Services, Inc., et al..

Counsel for: Verizon

5

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Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 28

Samuel L. Feder

Caressa D. Bennet

Luke C. Platzer

Kenneth C. Johnson

Jenner & Block LLP

Daryl A. Zakov

1099 New York Avenue, N.W.

Anthony K. Veach

Washington, D.C. 20001

Bennet & Bennet, PLLC

Counsel for: Comcast Corporation

4350 East West Highway, Suite 201

Bethesda, MD 20814

Richard A. Askoff, Sr.

Counsel for: Rural

National Exchange Carrier

Telecommunications Group, Inc. and

Association, Inc.

Central Texas Telephone

80 South Jefferson Road

Cooperative, Inc.

Whippany, NJ 07981

Counsel for: National Exchange

Carriers Association, Inc.

Robert A. Fox

Dennis Lopach

Kansas Corporation Commission

Montana Public Service Commission

1500 SW Arrowhead Road

1701 Prospect Avenue

Topeka, KS 66606

P.O. Box 202601

Counsel for The State Corporation

Helena, MT 59620

Commission of the State of Kansas

Counsel for: Montana Public

Service Commission

Ivan C. Evilsizer

Evilsizer Law Office, PLLC

Sean Conway

2301 Colonial Drive, Suite 2B

James E. Tysse

Helena, MT 59601-4995

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld

Counsel for: Ronan Telephone

1333 New Hampshire Avenue, N.W.

Company, et al.

Washington, D.C. 20036

Counsel for: Gila River Indian

Don L. Keskey

Community, et al.

505 N. Capitol Avenue

Lansin, MI 48933

Counsel for: Allband

Communications Cooperative

6

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Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 29

Alan L. Smith

Roger D. Dixon, Jr.

1169 East 4020 South

Law Offices of Dale Dixon

Salt Lake City, UT 84124

7316 Esfera Street

Counsel for Direct Communications

Carlsbad, CA 92009

Cedar Valley, LLC, et al.

Counsel for: North County

Communications Corporation

David Cosson

H. Russell Frisby, Jr.

2154 Wisconsin Avenue, N.W.

Dennis Lane

Washington, D.C. 20007

Harvey L. Reiter

Counsel for: Eastern Nebraska

Stinson Morrison Hecker

Telephone Company

1775 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.

Washington, D.C. 20006

Counsel for: Eastern Nebraska

Telephone Company

Holly R. Smith

Maureen A. Scott

James B. Ramsay

Janet F. Wagner

NARUC

Wesley C. Van Cleve

1101 Vermont Ave., N.W., Suite 200

Arizona Corporation Commission

Washington, D.C. 20005

Legal Division

Counsel for: NARUC

1200 West Washington

Phoenix, AZ 85007

Counsel for: Arizona Corporation

Commission

Raymond L. Doggett, Jr.

Rick Chessen

D. Mathias Roussy, Jr.

Neal M. Goldberg

Virginia State Corp. Commission

Jennifer McKee

Office of General Counsel

Steven F. Morris

P.O. Box 1197

NCTA

Richmond, VA 23218-1197

25 Masschusetts Avenue, N.W.

Counsel for: Virginia State

Suite 100

Corporation Commission

Washington, D.C. 20001

Counsel for: NCTA

7

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Appellate Case: 11-9900 Document: 01019291468 Date Filed: 08/07/2014 Page: 30

Michael C. Small

John B. Capehart

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld

2029 Century Park E., Suite 2400

1700 Pacific Ave., Suite 4100

Los Angeles, CA 90067

Dallas, TX 75201

Counsel for: Gila River Indian, et al

Counsel for: Gila River Indian, et al

Jeffrey A. Lamken

Lucas M. Walker

Molo Lamken

600 New Hampshire Ave., NW

Suite 660

Washington, DC 20037

Counsel for: Windstream

Communications, Inc.

/s/ Laurence N. Bourne

8

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