On November 30, 2022, the FCC announced a tentative agenda for the Open Commission Meeting scheduled for 10:30 am EST on Wednesday, December 21, 2022.  The meeting will be held in the Commission Meeting Room of the FCC, 45 L Street N.E. Washington, D.C.  The FCC meeting is also online, and streamed live with open captioning at www.fcc.gov/live

As part of the agenda, the Commission will consider:

1.  A draft Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Order on Reconsideration related to Internet Protocol Captioned Telephone Service (IP CTS) and Internet Protocol Relay Service (IP Relay), which are forms of Telecommunications Relay Services (TRS), and

2.  A draft Notice of Proposed Rulemaking related to preventing and eliminating digital discrimination of access to broadband, which includes in its appendix the full Report of the Communications Equity and Diversity Council and its Recommendations and Best Practices to Prevent Digital Discrimination and Promote Digital Equity.

What the TRS Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and Order on Reconsideration would do:

  • Propose a 3-year compensation plan for IP CTS, based on average cost, for the period from July 1, 2023, through June 30, 2026.
  • Propose that IP CTS providers be compensated in different amounts, depending on whether captioning for a telephone call is provided on a fully automatic basis (using only automatic speech recognition (ASR)) or with the help of a communications assistant (CA).
  • Propose revisions to the allowable cost criteria for IP CTS and seeks comment on whether and how to annually adjust the compensation level during the 3-year period to reflect cost changes due to inflation and productivity.
  • Propose a technical amendment to the compensation formula for IP Relay to clarify the applicable inflation adjustment factor.
  • Deny the petitions of T-Mobile USA, Inc. and IDT Telecom, Inc. for reconsideration of the Commission’s 2020 IP CTS compensation decision and the request of certain IP CTS providers to maintain the IP CTS compensation level at $1.42 per minute for the 2021-22 TRS Fund year.

What the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on digital discrimination would do:

  • Propose to define digital discrimination of access and seek comment on further details of the definition of “digital discrimination of access,” including the appropriate legal standard.
  • Seek comment on what services, entities, and practices should be within the scope of its definition of digital discrimination of access (including whether to add disability to the list of characteristics covered by the rules).
  • Seek comment on rules the Commission should adopt to facilitate equal access and combat digital discrimination of access, and the legal authority for adopted rules.
  • Propose to revise the FCC’s informal complaint process to accept complaints of digital discrimination of access.
  • Propose to adopt model policies and best practices for states and localities combating digital discrimination.  

December 21 Meeting News Release:
URL:  https://www.fcc.gov/document/fcc-announces-tentative-agenda-december-open-meeting-8  
Word:  https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DOC-389644A1.docx  
PDF:  https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DOC-389644A1.pdf  
Text:  https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DOC-389644A1.txt  

Public Draft of the TRS item:
PDF:  https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DOC-389648A1.pdf
Text:  https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DOC-389648A1.txt

Public Draft of the Digital Discrimination of Access NPRM:
PDF:  https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DOC-389645A1.pdf  
Text:  https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DOC-389645A1.txt  

More information about the December 21 meeting:  https://www.fcc.gov/news-events/events/2022/12/december-2022-open-commission-meeting

While the Open Meeting is open to the public, the FCC headquarters building is not open access, and all guests must check in with and be screened by FCC security at the main entrance on L Street.  Attendees at the Open Meeting will not be required to have an appointment but must otherwise comply with protocols outlined at: https://www.fcc.gov/visit

Reasonable Accommodations:  Open captioning will be provided for this event.  Other reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities are available upon request.  In your request, include a description of the accommodation you will need and a way we can contact you if we need more information.  Last minute requests will be accepted but may be impossible to fill.  Send an e-mail to: fcc504@fcc.gov or call the Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau at 202-418-0530.

For general information about TRS, visit www.fcc.gov/trs.  For specific questions on the TRS item, contact Michael Scott, Disability Rights Office, Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau, at (202) 418-1264 or Michael.Scott@fcc.gov.  For further information on the digital discrimination of access item, contact Aurélie Mathieu, Competition Policy Division, Wireline Competition Bureau, at (202) 418-2194 or Aurelie.Mathieu@fcc.gov.  Individuals who use videophones and are fluent in American Sign Language (ASL) may call the FCC’s ASL Consumer Support Line at (844) 432-2275 (videophone).

Thursday, December 1, 2022