FCC Wireline Bureau Grants Verizon Waiver for Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) Program

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The FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau (WCB) has issued an order granting Verizon’s waiver request to allow it an additional month to submit the first reimbursement claim for a newly-enrolled subscriber.  The EBB Program requires providers file reimbursement claims by the 15th of each month after each uniform snapshot date for the first reimbursement claim for each subscriber that has newly enrolled in the Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) Program

Verizon requested a waiver of the 15-day deadline for the first reimbursement claim for a newly-enrolled EBB subscriber, and a one-month delay to submit the first reimbursement claim for a newly-enrolled subscriber.  In its waiver request, Verizon stated that because it “has elected to offer the EBB discount on multiple services, it will have to separately determine the EBB reimbursement amount for each subscriber on its snapshot list.” 

WCB agreed with Verizon that the 15-day deadline for the first reimbursement claim “poses a substantial hardship to Verizon in its EBB Program participation and amounts to a special circumstance that warrants a deviation from the general rule,” and thus waived the 15-day requirement and granted the one-month delay. The Bureau stated that it was convinced by Verizon’s argument that the waiver lends added flexibility for Verizon to offer the EBB discount for more of its services, and “avoid the alternative whereby [Verizon] would ‘simplify [its] reimbursement calculations by offering the EBB discount only on one service or only on services for which the standard rates all exceed $50 per month.’”

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