DAR File No. 38363

This rule was published in the April 15, 2014, issue (Vol. 2014, No. 8) of the Utah State Bulletin.

Public Service Commission, Administration

Rule R746-340

Service Quality for Telecommunications Corporations

Notice of Proposed Rule


DAR File No.: 38363
Filed: 03/17/2014 12:18:07 PM


Purpose of the rule or reason for the change:

The end-user service quality rules for incumbent telecommunications corporations with 30,000 or more access lines in Utah (Sections R746-340-8 and R746-340-9) are applicable to only one corporation; Qwest Corporation dba CenturyLink QC ("CenturyLink"). The Public Service Commission of Utah approved CenturyLink's petition to deviate from and/or waive the previously referenced end-user rules on 06/28/2013. The Commission's decision to approve CenturyLink's petition was based in part on the recommendation of the Division of Public Utilities ("Division"). The Division recommended the Commission approve CenturyLink's petiton because: 1) sufficient competition exists throughout CenturyLink's service area in Utah; and 2) CenturyLink's customers will not see an impact on their ability to have service issues resolved because they may still file individual complaints with the Division if their service quality becomes a concern. As a result of the approval of CenturyLink's petition, Sections R746-340-8 and R746-340-9 are now moot and unnecessary because the rules were only applicable to CenturyLink and need to be removed.

Summary of the rule or change:

The proposed rule change removes Sections R746-340-8 and R746-340-9 in their entirety.

State statutory or constitutional authorization for this rule:

  • Section 54-4-23
  • Section 54-4-1
  • Section 54-4-14

Anticipated cost or savings to:

the state budget:

Sections R746-340-8 and R746-340-9 impose no obligations on the state and therefore, no cost or savings will result from removal of these sections.

local governments:

Sections R746-340-8 and R746-340-9 impose no obligations on local government and therefore, removal of these sections will not affect local government.

small businesses:

Sections R746-340-8 and R746-340-9 impose no obligations on small businesses and therefore, removal of these sections will not affect small businesses.

persons other than small businesses, businesses, or local governmental entities:

The proposed rule change deletes Sections R746-340-8 and R746-340-9 which are now moot and unnecessary. As such, no persons will be affected by deletion of these sections.

Compliance costs for affected persons:

These sections were made moot by the Commission's order of 06/28/2013, and therefore, no persons will be affected by the removal of these sections. As such, there are no associated compliance costs.

Comments by the department head on the fiscal impact the rule may have on businesses:

Because these sections are now moot by the Commission's order of 06/28/2013, the removal of these sections will have no fiscal impact on businesses.

Ron Allen, Commission Chairman

The full text of this rule may be inspected, during regular business hours, at the Division of Administrative Rules, or at:

Public Service Commission
160 E 300 S
SALT LAKE CITY, UT 84111-2316

Direct questions regarding this rule to:

  • Sheri Bintz at the above address, by phone at 801-530-6714, by FAX at 801-530-6796, or by Internet E-mail at sbintz@utah.gov
  • Jordan White at the above address, by phone at 801-530-6712, by FAX at , or by Internet E-mail at jordanwhite@utah.gov

Interested persons may present their views on this rule by submitting written comments to the address above no later than 5:00 p.m. on:


This rule may become effective on:


Authorized by:

Jordan White, Legal Counsel


R746. Public Service Commission, Administration.

R746-340. Service Quality for Telecommunications Corporations.

R746-340-1. General.

A. Application of Rules -- These rules promulgated herein shall apply to each telephone corporation, as defined in Subsection 54-8b-2(16).

1. These rules govern the furnishing of communications services and facilities to the public by a telecommunications corporation subject to the jurisdiction of the Commission. The purpose of these rules is to establish reasonable service standards to the end that adequate and satisfactory service will be rendered to the public.

2. The adoption of these rules by the Commission shall in no way preclude it from altering or amending its rules pursuant to applicable statutory procedures, nor shall the adoption of these rules preclude the Commission from granting temporary exemptions to rules in exceptional cases as provided in R746-100-15, Deviation from Rules.

B. Definitions -- In the interpretation of these rules, the following definitions shall apply:

1. "Allowed Service Disruption Event" -- an event when a telecommunications corporation is prevented from providing adequate service due to:

a. A customer's act;

b. A customer's failure to act;

c. A governmental agency's delay in granting a right-of-way or other required permit;

d. A disaster or an act of nature that would not have been reasonably anticipated and prepared for by the telecommunications corporation;

e. A disaster of sufficient intensity to give rise to an emergency being declared by state government;

f. A work stoppage, which shall include a grace period of six weeks following return to work;

g. A cable cut outside the telecommunications corporation's control affecting more than 20 pairs.

h. A public calling event, busy calling or dial tone loss due to mass calling or dial-up event;

i. Negligent or willful misconduct by customers or third parties including outages originating from the introduction of a virus onto the telecommunications corporation's network or acts or terrorism.

2. "Central Office" -- A building that contains the necessary telecommunications equipment and operating arrangements for switching, connecting, and inter-connecting the required local, interoffice, and interexchange services for the general public.

3. "Central Office Area" -- A geographic area served by a central office.

4. "CFR" means the Code of Federal Regulations, 2000 edition.

5. "Choke Network Trunk Groups" -- A network with special trunking and special prefixes in place to manage the use of mass-calling-numbers.

6. "Commission" -- Public Service Commission of Utah.

7. "Commitment" -- A promise by a telecommunications corporation to a customer specifying a date and time to provide a service.

8. "Customer" -- A person, firm, partnership, corporation, municipality, cooperative, organization, or governmental agency, provided with telecommunications services by a telecommunications corporation.

9. Customer trouble reports include:

a. "Trouble Report" -- A customer report attributable to the malfunction of a telecommunications corporation's facilities and includes repeat trouble reports.

b. "Out of Service Trouble Report" -- A report used when a customer reports there is neither incoming nor outgoing telecommunications capability.

c. "Repeat Trouble Report" -- A report received on a customer access line within 30 days of a closed trouble report.

10. "Exchange" -- A unit established by a telecommunications corporation for the administration of telecommunication services in a specified geographic area. It may consist of one or more central office areas together with associated outside plant facilities used in furnishing telecommunications services in that area.

11. "Exchange Service Area" -- The geographical territory served by an exchange.

12. "Held Order" -- A request for basic exchange line service delayed beyond the initial commitment date due to a lack of facilities which the telecommunications corporation is responsible for providing.

13. "Interconnection Trunk Group" -- Connects the telecommunications corporation's central office or wire center with another telecommunications corporation's facilities.

14. "Local Access Line" -- A facility, totally within one central office area, providing a telecommunications connection between a customer's service location and the serving central office.

15. "Out of Service" -- When there exists neither incoming nor outgoing telecommunication capability.

16. "Party Line Service" -- A grade of local exchange service which provides for more than one customer to be served by the same local access line.

17. "Price List" -- The terms and conditions upon which public telecommunications services are offered that is filed by a telecommunications corporation that is subject to pricing flexibility pursuant to 54-8b-2.3.

18. "Tariff" -- A portion or the entire body of rates, tolls, rentals, charges, classifications and rules, filed by the telecommunications corporation and approved by the Commission.

19. "Telecommunications Corporation" -- A "telephone corporation" as defined in Section 54-2-1(23).

20. "Voice Grade Service" -- Service that at a minimum, includes:

a. providing access to E911, which identifies the exact location of the emergency caller;

b. Two-way communications with a clear voice each way;

c. Ability to place and receive calls; and

d. Voice band between 300 HZ and 3000 HZ.

21. "Wire Center" -- The building in which one or more local switching systems are installed and where the outside cable plant is connected to the central office equipment.


R746-340-2. Records and Reports.

A. Availability of Records -- Each telecommunications corporation shall make its books and records open to inspection by representatives of the Commission, the Division of Public Utilities, or the Committee of Consumer Services (or any successor agencies) during normal operating hours.

B. Retention of Records -- All records required by these rules shall be preserved for the period of time specified at 47 CFR 42, incorporated by this reference.

C. Reports --

1. Each telecommunications corporation shall maintain records of its operations in sufficient detail to permit review of its service performance.

2. Central offices with more than 500 local access lines, shall each report as promptly as possible to the Commission and the local news media, including, but not limited to, radio, TV, and newspaper, when applicable, failure or damage to the equipment or facilities which disrupts the local or toll service of 25 percent or more of the local access lines in that central office for a time period in excess of two hours.

D. Uniform System of Accounts -- The Uniform System of Accounts for Class A and Class B telephone utilities, as prescribed by the Federal Communications Commission at 47 CFR 32 is the prescribed system of accounts to record the results of Utah intrastate operations.

E. Data to be Filed with the Commission --

1. Terms and Conditions of Service -- Each telecommunications corporation shall have its tariff, price lists, etc., which describe the terms and conditions under which it offers public telecommunications services on file with the Commission, and where applicable, in accordance with the rules governing the filing of the information as prescribed by the Commission. It shall also provide the same information to the Commission in electronic format as requested by the Commission.

2. Exchange Maps -- Each telecommunications corporation shall have on file with the Commission an exchange area boundary map for each of its exchanges within the state. Each map shall clearly show the boundary lines of the exchange area wherein the telecommunications corporation serves. Exchange boundary lines shall be located by appropriate measurement to an identifiable location where that portion of the boundary line is not otherwise located on section lines, waterways, railroads, roads, etc. Maps shall show the location of major highways, section lines, geographic township and range lines and major landmarks located outside municipalities. An approximate distance scale shall be shown on each map.


R746-340-3. Engineering.

A. Utility Plant -- Utility plant shall be designed, constructed, maintained and operated in accordance with the provisions outlined in the National Electrical Safety Code, 1993 edition, incorporated by reference.

B. Party-line Service -- When party-line service is to be provided, no more than eight customers shall be connected on one local access line, unless approved by the Commission. The telecommunications corporation may re-group customers as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this rule.


R746-340-4. Emergency Operation.

A. Emergency Service -- Telecommunications corporations shall make reasonable arrangements to meet emergencies resulting from failures of service, unusual and prolonged increases in traffic, illness of personnel, fire, storm or other acts of God, and inform its employees as to procedures to be followed in the event of emergency in order to prevent or minimize interruption or impairment of telecommunication service.

B. Battery Power -- Each central office shall have a minimum of three hours battery reserve.

C. Auxiliary Power -- In central offices exceeding 5,000 lines, a permanent auxiliary power unit shall be installed.


R746-340-5. Maintenance.

A. Maintenance of Plant and Equipment --

1. Each telecommunications corporation shall adopt and pursue a maintenance program aimed at achieving efficient operation of its system to permit the rendering of safe, adequate and continuous service at all times.

2. Maintenance shall include keeping all plant and equipment in a good state of repair consistent with safety and the adequate service performance of the plant affected.

B. Customer Trouble Reports --

1. Each telecommunications corporation shall provide for the receipt of customer trouble reports at all hours, and shall make a full and prompt investigation of and response to each complaint. The telecommunications corporation shall maintain a record of trouble reports made by its customers. This record shall include appropriate identification of the customer or service affected, the time, date and nature of the report, and the action taken to clear the trouble or satisfy the complaint.

2. Provision shall be made to clear emergency out-of-service trouble at all hours, consistent with the bona fide needs of customers and the personal safety of utility personnel.

3. Provisions shall be made to clear other out-of-service trouble not requiring unusual repair, within 48 hours of the report received by the telecommunications corporation, unless the customer agrees to another arrangement.

4. If unusual repairs are required, or other factors preclude clearing of reported trouble promptly, reasonable efforts shall be made to notify affected customers.

C. Inspections and Tests -- Each telecommunications corporation shall adopt a program of periodic tests, inspections and preventive maintenance aimed at achieving efficient operation of its system and rendering safe, adequate, and continuous service. It shall file a description of its inspection and testing program with the Commission showing how it will monitor and report compliance with Commission rules or standards.

D. Planned Service Interruptions -- If service must be interrupted for purposes of rearranging facilities or equipment, the work shall be done at a time which will cause minimal inconvenience to customers. Each telecommunications corporation shall attempt to notify each affected customer in advance of the interruption. Emergency or alternative service shall be provided, during the period of the interruption, to assure communication is available for local law enforcement and public safety units and agencies.


R746-340-6. Safety.

A. Safety -- Each telecommunications corporation shall:

1. require its employees to use suitable tools and equipment to perform their work in a safe manner;

2. instruct employees in safe work practices;

3. exercise reasonable care in minimizing the hazards to which its employees, customers and the general public may be subjected.


R746-340-7. End User Service Standards For All Telecommunications Corporations.

A. Public Telecommunications Services -- A telecommunications corporation providing public telecommunications services shall, excluding documented Allowed Service Disruption events listed under R746-340-1(B)(1):

1. meet minimum voice grade requirements as defined in R746-340-1(B)(19);

2. meet network call completion standards:

a. provide dial tone within three seconds on at least 98 percent of tested calls placed during average daily busy hours each month for each wire center; and

b. assure that no interoffice facilities entirely within a telecommunications corporation's network, except choke network trunks, exceed two percent blocking. Intertandem facilities shall be governed by R746-365.


[R746-340-8. End User Service Standards for Incumbent Telecommunications Corporations with 30,000 or More Access Lines in Utah.

Except, after public notice and hearing, as ordered by the Commission upon finding that sufficient competition exists in a defined geographic area to waive one or more of the following standards and rely upon market operations to ensure adequate end user service quality, each incumbent telecommunications corporation with 30,000 or more access lines in Utah shall comply with the following service standards with respect to public telecommunications services offered pursuant to tariff on January 1, 2005. An incumbent telecommunications corporation subject to Rule 746-340-8 will be subject to 54-7-25 penalties for the failure to comply with any of these service standards for any time period greater than three consecutive months, unless the Commission determines, pursuant to a request for agency action by an interested person and proceedings thereon, that the corporation's failure(s) to comply with these standards warrant imposition of such penalties for a shorter time period.

A. Installations -- Excluding documented Allowed Service Disruption events listed in R746-340-1(B)(1), a telecommunications corporation shall:

1. install 95 percent of all new, transfer, and change orders within three business days or on the customer-requested due dates, whichever is later, on a wire center basis;

2. allow no more than four held orders per 1,000 new, transfer and change orders at the end of any month on a statewide basis for all areas not previously exempted under this rule;

3. meet 90 percent of all new, transfer and change order installation commitments, excluding customer trouble reports within seven days of initial installation, on a wire center basis, unless the customer requests a later date; and

4. automatically credit $10 to a residential customer, $40 to a small business customer, for missing an installation commitment.

B. Repairs -- Excluding documented Allowed Service Disruption Events listed in R746-340-1(B)(1), a telecommunications corporation shall:

1. Repair 85 percent of all out-of-service troubles within one business day, on a wire center basis;

2. repair 90 percent of all troubles within two business days, on a wire center basis; and

3. automatically credit $10 to a residential customer, $40 to a small business customer, for missing a repair commitment.

4. Trouble reports received after 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday are deemed received at 8:00 a.m. on the following business day.

C. Billing Requirements -- Excluding documented Allowed Service Disruption events listed in R746-340-1(B)(1), a telecommunications corporation shall:

1. correct a billing error upon receiving a customer request by correcting the error on the customers account within one week.

2. Maintain and provide to the Division of Public Utilities upon request, evidence documenting its activities, the purposes, dates, volumes, and times of those activities in:

a. making billing corrections within one week, and

b. investigating to determine whether or how to make billing corrections.

D. Disconnection of Service Requirements -- Excluding documented Allowed Service Disruption Events listed in R746-340-1(B)(1), a telecommunications corporation shall:

1. disconnect a customer for nonpayment no earlier than the disconnect date listed on the telecommunications corporation's disconnect notice to the customer; and

2. maintain and provide to the Division of Public Utilities upon request, evidence documenting its activities and the dates of those activities when disconnecting customers no earlier than the disconnect dates specified on their disconnect notices; and disconnecting only those customers eligible to be disconnected.

E. Incoming Repair and Business Office Calls -- Excluding documented Allowed Service Disruption Events listed in R746-340-1(B)(1), a telecommunications corporation shall assure incoming repair and business office calls experience no more than a 35-second time in queue on average.


R746-340-9. Reporting Requirements For Compliance with R746-340-8 Standards.

A. Reporting Requirements -- A telecommunications corporation, subject to R746-340-8, shall separately document the specific cause, the duration, and the magnitude of each failure to comply with a R746-340-8 requirement. A telecommunications corporation shall provide quarterly service quality monitoring reports covering the measures listed under R746-340-8. Monthly results will be recorded, summarized, and reported quarterly and on a wire-center basis as applicable. Wire-center specific data shall be treated as proprietary until 120 days after the close of the last month reflected in the report.

B. Monthly Results -- For each requirement, the reported monthly results shall measure outcomes both meeting and not meeting the R746-340-8 standards.

C. Audits of Service Outcomes or Complaints -- A telecommunications corporation shall cooperate in Division of Public Utilities' audits regarding its service outcomes or Commission complaints regarding those outcomes.]


KEY: procedures, telecommunications, telephone utility regulations

Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment: [August 8, 2005]2014

Notice of Continuation: June 24, 2013

Authorizing, and Implemented or Interpreted Law: 54-4-1; 54-4-14; 54-4-23


Additional Information

More information about a Notice of Proposed Rule is available online.

The Portable Document Format (PDF) version of the Bulletin is the official version. The PDF version of this issue is available at https://rules.utah.gov/publicat/bull-pdf/2014/b20140415.pdf. The HTML edition of the Bulletin is a convenience copy. Any discrepancy between the PDF version and HTML version is resolved in favor of the PDF version.

Text to be deleted is struck through and surrounded by brackets ([example]). Text to be added is underlined (example).  Older browsers may not depict some or any of these attributes on the screen or when the document is printed.

For questions regarding the content or application of this rule, please contact Sheri Bintz at the above address, by phone at 801-530-6714, by FAX at 801-530-6796, or by Internet E-mail at sbintz@utah.gov; Jordan White at the above address, by phone at 801-530-6712, by FAX at , or by Internet E-mail at jordanwhite@utah.gov.  For questions about the rulemaking process, please contact the Division of Administrative Rules.