DAR File No. 41644
This rule was published in the September 1, 2017, issue (Vol. 2017, No. 17) of the Utah State Bulletin.
Public Service Commission, Administration
Application of Fund Surcharges to Customer Billings
Change in Proposed Rule
DAR File No.: 41644
Filed: 08/15/2017 09:29:49 AM
Purpose of the rule or reason for the change:
The reason for the change is to respond to comments submitted during, and following, the comment period for the original amendment.
Summary of the rule or change:
The term "connection" is defined by reference to Subsection 54-8b-15(1)(c). Terminology is introduced to foster concision within the rule. Language regarding an end-user surcharge as the funding mechanism for the Utah Universal Service Fund (UUSF) is modified to clarify that the surcharge may be included in an all-inclusive billing plan. Where a provider administers a multi-line service, the provider is required to apply the surcharge, on a monthly basis, to the total number of concurrent real-time voice communication call sessions that end-users can place to or receive from the public switched telephone network. The surcharge may be waived for any end-user who is paying a similar surcharge to a different state. (EDITOR'S NOTE: The original proposed amendment upon which this change in proposed rule (CPR) was based was published in the June 1, 2017, issue of the Utah State Bulletin, on page 180. Underlining in the rule below indicates text that has been added since the publication of the proposed rule mentioned above; strike-out indicates text that has been deleted. You must view the CPR and the proposed amendment together to understand all of the changes that will be enforceable should the agency make this rule effective.)
Statutory or constitutional authorization for this rule:
- Section 54-3-1
- Section 54-8b-15
- Section 54-4-1
Anticipated cost or savings to:
the state budget:
The Public Service Commission (PSC) and the Division of Public Utilities have been administering the UUSF for many years and have the budget to continue doing so. The changes proposed to the surcharge mechanism through the original filing and this change to proposed rule will not have a fiscal impact on the state budget.
Local governments are not required to comply with or enforce the rules through which the UUSF is funded. No fiscal impact to local government is anticipated.
The analysis set forth in the original filing is unaffected by this change to proposed rule. That analysis is as follows: "Small businesses that provide access lines will be required to adjust their billing in order to assess and remit a per-access line surcharge (as opposed to remitting a percentage of their revenues). To comply, these businesses might need to change or modify their billing software. All such costs were considered by the Legislature in determining to allow migration to a per-connection surcharge. Further, such costs will vary and cannot be estimated by the PSC. However, the PSC notes that most of the small businesses affected by this rule have historically assessed a per-access line surcharge in order to fund a program that provides telephony assistance to individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing, or severely speech challenged. Therefore, the PSC anticipates that, for the majority of affected businesses, the migration from a revenue-based remittance to a connection-based remittance will not pose a meaningful fiscal burden."
persons other than small businesses, businesses, or local governmental entities:
The analysis set forth in the original filing is unaffected by this change to proposed rule. That analysis is as follows: "Customers of businesses that provide access lines will be charged $0.36 per month per access line."
Compliance costs for affected persons:
The analysis set forth in the original filing is unaffected by this change to proposed rule. That analysis is as follows: "To comply, affected persons must collect from their customers and remit to the PSC a monthly per-connection surcharge. Providers of access lines will need to obtain or modify billing software accordingly. The associated costs will vary and cannot be anticipated. However, where most providers have historically collected a per-connection surcharge to comply with other statutory requirements, it is anticipated that the associated costs will be minimal."
Comments by the department head on the fiscal impact the rule may have on businesses:
The comments provided in the original filing are unaffected by this change to proposed rule. Those comments are as follows: "As stated in the rule analysis, the fiscal impact to businesses will result from IT programming or software that might be necessary in order to comply with a per-connection surcharge requirement rather than a revenue-based remittance requirement. It is anticipated that the conversion costs will be minimal and well within the regulatory budget of Utah's access line providers."
Thad LeVar, Chair
The full text of this rule may be inspected, during regular business hours, at the Office of Administrative Rules, or at:Public Service Commission
HEBER M WELLS BLDG
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 firstname.lastname@example.org
- Jennie Jonsson at the above address, by phone at 801-530-6763, by FAX at , or by Internet E-mail at email@example.com
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:
Jennie Jonsson, Administrative Law Judge
R746. Public Service Commission, Administration.
R746-360. Universal Public Telecommunications Service Support Fund.
R746-360-4. Application of Fund Surcharges to Customer Billings.
(1)(a) "Access line" is defined at Utah Code Subsection 54-8b-2(1).
(b) For purposes of applying the statutory
definition of "access line," the [
"functional equivalent of a circuit-switched
connection from an end-user to the public switched network"
means equipment or technology that allows an end-user to place or
receive a real-time voice communication].
Providers of access lines and
functionally equivalent] connections are hereafter
referred to jointly as "providers."
(2) Through [
July] 31, 2017, providers shall remit to the Commission
1.65 percent of billed intrastate retail rates.
As of August 1, 2017, and u]nless Subsection R746-360-4(5) applies, providers shall
collect from their end-user customers $0.36 per month per access
[ : (i) that has a physical endpoint within the State of
Utah; or (ii) as to which the provider has record of an associated
address] within the State of Utah.
(b)] The surcharge shall apply [ directly] to each end-user[ as a separate charge and shall not be included in, nor paid
from, the provider's rates or telecommunications
(4)(a) A provider shall remit to the Commission no less than 98.69 percent of its total monthly surcharge collections.
(b) A provider may retain a maximum of 1.31 percent of its total monthly surcharge collections to offset the costs of administering this rule.
An end-user may petition the Commission for a waiver of the surcharge set forth in Subsection R746-360-4(3). Any such petition shall be adjudicated as an informal administrative proceeding.
(b)] An end-user that petitions for a waiver of the
surcharge has the burden to provide[ billing records or other substantial documentary
demonstrating that, at all times and continuously during the six calendar months preceding the date of petition, the access line being assessed was not used to access Utah intrastate telecommunications services
An exemption granted under Subsection R746-360-4(5)
is valid for a period of one calendar year from the date
(b)] Following the expiration of an exemption, and upon
notice from the Commission, the end-user's provider shall
surcharge each month, until such time as the provider
is notified by the Commission that a renewed exemption has been
(c)] Any assessment remitted to the Commission between the
expiration of an exemption and the approval of a petition for
renewal of the exemption shall be non-refundable.
(d)(i)] The end-user shall bear the sole responsibility to
know the expiration date of an exemption granted to the end-user
and to ensure that an application for renewal is filed at least 30
days prior to the date of expiration.
(ii)] At any proceeding to review a petition for renewal of
an exemption, evidence that the end-user was unaware of the
expiration date shall be inadmissible.
(iii)] A petition for renewal of an exemption is deemed
granted unless the Commission issues an order of denial within 30
days of the date on which the petition is filed.
KEY: affordable base rate, public utilities, telecommunications, universal service fund
Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment: 2017
Notice of Continuation: November 13, 2013
Authorizing, and Implemented or Interpreted Law: 54-3-1; 54-4-1; 54-8b-15
More information about a Notice of Change in 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/2017/b20170901.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.
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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 firstname.lastname@example.org; Jennie Jonsson at the above address, by phone at 801-530-6763, by FAX at , or by Internet E-mail at email@example.com. For questions about the rulemaking process, please contact the Office of Administrative Rules.