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Comments Invited on Application of AT&T Services, Inc. on behalf of Alascom, Inc. D/B/A AT&T Alaska To Discontinue Domestic Telecommunications Services

WC Docket No. 11-144
Comp. Pol. File No. 1003

Comments Due: September 30, 2011

Section 214 Application
Applicant: AT&T Services, Inc. on behalf of Alascom, Inc. d/b/a AT&T Alaska

On August 16, 2011, AT&T Services, Inc. (AT&T or Applicant) filed an application with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) on behalf of its affiliate, Alascom, Inc. d/b/a AT&T Alaska (AT&T Alaska), located at 505 East Bluff Drive, Anchorage, Alaska 99501, requesting authority, under section 214 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47 U.S.C. § 214, and section 63.71 of the Commission's rules, 47 C.F.R. § 63.71, to discontinue a certain domestic telecommunications service in Alaska.

AT&T indicates that AT&T Alaska currently offers Frame Relay Service (FRS) Alaska Half-Channel PVC (Permanent Virtual Connection) service throughout its service territory in Alaska (Service Area).  AT&T describes this service as a two-way half-channel PVC that connects FRS U.S. Domestic Ports between the U.S. Mainland and Alaska.  AT&T explains that one of the FRS Alaska Half-Channel PVCs is furnished in the U.S. Mainland and the other FRS Alaska Half-Channel PVC is furnished in Alaska.  According to AT&T, the two FRS Alaska Half-Channel PVCs together provide a logical connection between an FRS U.S. Domestic Port located in the U.S. Mainland and an FRS U.S. Domestic Port located in Alaska.  AT&T maintains that AT&T Alaska must, however, discontinue this service because the equipment utilized to provision the service has been discontinued and is unsupported by the manufacturer.  AT&T states that AT&T Alaska intends to discontinue offering FRS Alaska Half-Channel PVC service to new customers on or after October 17, 2011 and to discontinue service to existing customers on or after November 30, 2011, subject to Commission authorization.  AT&T submits, however, that the public convenience and necessity will not be impaired by this proposed discontinuance because there are replacement solutions available from AT&T and other competing carriers in the marketplace such as AT&T's frame relay and VPN services.  AT&T indicates that AT&T Alaska notified affected customers of the proposed discontinuance by letters sent via U.S. Mail on August 15, 2011.  AT&T asserts that AT&T Alaska is considered non-dominant with respect to the service to be discontinued.

In accordance with section 63.71(c) of the Commission's rules, AT&T's application will be deemed to be granted automatically on the 31st day after the release date of this public notice, unless the Commission notifies AT&T that the grant will not be automatically effective.  In the application and customer notice, AT&T indicates that AT&T Alaska plans to discontinue offering the affected service to new customers in the Service Area on or after October 17, 2011 and to discontinue service to existing customers in the Service Area on or after November 30, 2011, subject to Commission authorization.  Accordingly, pursuant to section 63.71(c) and the terms of AT&T's application and notice, absent further Commission action, AT&T Alaska may cease to offer FRS Alaska Half-Channel PVC service to new customers in the Service Areas on or after October 17, 2011.  In addition, AT&T Alaska may terminate service to existing customers in the Service Areas on or after November 30, 2011, in accordance with AT&T's filed representations.  The Commission normally will authorize proposed discontinuances of service unless it is shown that customers or other end users would be unable to receive service or a reasonable substitute from another carrier, or that the public convenience and necessity would be otherwise adversely affected.

This proceeding is considered a "permit but disclose" proceeding for purposes of the Commission's ex parte rules, 47 C.F.R. §§ 1.1200-1.1216.  Comments objecting to this application must be filed with the Commission on or before September 30, 2011.  Such comments should refer to WC Docket No. 11-144 and Comp. Pol. File No. 1003.  Comments should include specific information about the impact of this proposed discontinuance on the commenter, including any inability to acquire reasonable substitute service.  Comments may be filed using the Commission's Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS) or by filing paper copies.  See Electronic Filing of Documents in Rulemaking Proceedings, 63 FR 24121 (1998).  Comments filed through the ECFS can be sent as an electronic file via the Internet to http://fjallfoss.fcc.gov/ecfs2/.  Filers should follow the instructions provided on the Web site for submitting comments.  Generally, only one copy of an electronic submission must be filed.  In completing the transmittal screen, filers should include their full name, U.S. Postal Service mailing address, and the applicable docket or rulemaking number.

Parties who choose to file by paper must file an original and one copy of each filing.  Filings can be sent by hand or messenger delivery, by commercial overnight courier, or by first-class or overnight U.S. Postal Service mail.  All filings must be addressed to the Commission's Secretary, Office of the Secretary, Federal Communications Commission.  All hand-delivered or messenger-delivered paper filings for the Commission's Secretary must be delivered to FCC Headquarters at 445 12th Street, S.W., Room TW-A325, Washington, D.C. 20554.  The filing hours are Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.  All hand deliveries must be held together with rubber bands or fasteners.  Any envelopes and boxes must be disposed of before entering the building.  Commercial overnight mail (other than U.S. Postal Service Express Mail and Priority Mail) must be sent to 9300 East Hampton Drive, Capitol Heights, MD 20743.  U.S. Postal Service first-class, Express, and Priority mail must be addressed to 445 12th Street, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20554.

Two copies of the comments should also be sent to the Competition Policy Division, Wireline Competition Bureau, Federal Communications Commission, 445 12th Street, S.W., Room 5-C140, Washington, D.C. 20554, Attention: Carmell Weathers.  In addition, comments should be served upon the Applicant.  Commenters are also requested to fax their comments to the FCC at (202) 418-1413, Attention: Carmell Weathers.

The application will be available for public inspection and copying during regular business hours at the FCC Reference Center, Portals II, 445 12th Street, S.W., Room CY-A257, Washington, D.C. 20554, (202) 418-0270.  A copy of the application may also be purchased from the Commission's duplicating contractor, Best Copy and Printing, Inc., 445 12th Street, S.W., Room CY-B402, Washington, D.C. 20554, telephone (202) 488-5300, facsimile (202) 488-5563, or via e-mail at FCC@BCPIWEB.COM.  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).

For further information, contact Carmell Weathers, (202) 418-2325 (voice), carmell.weathers@fcc.gov, or Kimberly Jackson, (202) 418-7393 (voice), kimberly.jackson@fcc.gov, of the Competition Policy Division, Wireline Competition Bureau.  The tty number is (202) 418-0484.  For further information on procedures regarding section 214 please visit http://www.fcc.gov/wcb/cpd/other_adjud.

- FCC -
 

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