Citing Clerical Error, South Dakota Telco Petitions FCC to Readjust A-CAM Spending

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Clarity Telecom, LLC dba Vast Broadband (Clarity), a cable and Internet provider operating in the states of Iowa, Minnesota and South Dakota, has filed a petition for reconsideration with the FCC urging the agency to reconsider its March 2018 Report and Order which established the amount of A-CAM high-cost support that would go to carriers electing model-based support for ten years. Specifically, Clarity is asking the Commission to “make a minor increase in the amount of additional A-CAM support to provide funding for the locations which were precluded from receiving support due to an inadvertent clerical error.” Alternatively, Clarity is requesting that the Commission seek comment on including those abandoned locations in the USF NPRM as it considers additional A-CAM funding opportunities. Clarity argues that when filling out its Form 477 data, it inadvertently identified up to 2,167 locations as having cable modem (code 42) services rather than DSL (code 10). This erroneous misidentification, according to Clarity, did not become apparent until after the compiled Form 477 data “knocked out” the relevant census blocks from receiving support. While Clarity filed a second revision in September 2016, and filed a petition for waiver of the deadline to submit Form 477 revisions, those petitions were denied. According to Clarity’s petition for reconsideration, if the Commission denies its waiver to include the 2,167 locations currently excluded, that move will prevent the company from receiving up to $1,83 million per year based on the FCC’s revised offer. Clarity further argues that by not including the 2,167 locations, they will forever be excluded from receiving any high-cost support; and that because those same South Dakota markets are either unserved or underserved, they will never achieve 10 Mpbs downlink or 1 Mbps uplink broadband service.

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