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Deadline Announced for Study Area Boundary Waivers

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Released: April 25, 2013


Federal Communications Commission

News Media Information 202 / 418-0500

445 12th St., S.W.


Washington, D.C. 20554

TTY: 1-888-835-5322

DA 13-904

Released: April 25, 2013



WC Docket No. 10-90

WC Docket No. 05-337

The high cost loop support (HCLS) benchmarking methodology adopted in the HCLS
Benchmarks Implementation Order currently uses a commercial data source for study area boundaries
that are used in the regression’s geographically-based variables.1 When it implemented the benchmarking
methodology, the Wireline Competition Bureau (“Bureau”) provided for an expedited process for rate-of-
return carriers to submit information to correct their study area boundaries.2 Subsequently, the Bureau
adopted a procedure to collect study area boundaries,3 with that information due from incumbents no later
than May 23, 2013, or from state commissions no later than June 28, 2013.4 In light of the ongoing
process to revise the benchmarks to incorporate study area boundaries obtained through this data
collection, the Bureau will accept expedited requests to modify study area boundaries only until

1, 2013

The process of preparing and submitting study area boundary data this year (or reviewing any
data submitted by states) should give carriers subject to the benchmarking rule the opportunity to
determine if they should seek an expedited waiver to correct the boundaries used in benchmark limit
calculations for 2012 and 2013. Shapefiles filed by state commissions will be available to the relevant
carrier shortly after filing, so carriers whose states file on the carriers’ behalf will have sufficient time to
submit a waiver request if they so choose. Any study area corrections submitted after August 1, 2013 will
not be used to adjust caps for 2012 and 2013.

Additional Information

Additional information on the study area boundary data collection, including the orders
referenced in this Public Notice, can be found on the Commission’s study area boundary webpage at Specific questions about the
requirements may be sent to You can also contact the study area
boundary staff at the Industry Analysis and Technology Division, Wireline Competition Bureau, FCC by

1 Connect America Fund; High-Cost Universal Service Support, WC Docket Nos. 10-90, 05-337, Order, 27 FCC
Rcd 4235 (Wireline Comp. Bur. 2012) (HCLS Benchmarks Implementation Order).
2 Id. at 4246-47, paras. 27, 29.
3 Connect America Fund; High-Cost Universal Service Support, WC Docket Nos. 10-90, 05-337, Report and Order,
27 FCC Rcd 13528 (Wireline Comp. Bur. 2012); Order on Reconsideration, 28 FCC Rcd 1489 (Wireline Comp.
Bur. 2013).
4 Wireline Competition Bureau Announces Procedures and Deadlines for Submissions of Study Area Boundaries,
WC Docket Nos. 10-90, 05-337, Public Notice, DA 13-456 (Wireline Comp. Bur. rel. Mar. 18, 2013).

calling (202) 418-0940, (202) 418-0484 (tty). For additional information about this Public Notice, please
contact John Emmett at (202) 418-0386 or, or Chelsea Fallon at (202) 418-7991
- FCC -

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