The National Exchange Carrier Association, Inc. (NECA) has filed its 2016 modification of the average schedule universal service high-cost loop support formula, which, if approved, will take effect on January 1, 2016, and remain in effect through December 31, 2016. According to NECA’s filing, annual payments to average schedule companies under the proposed formula will total approximately $11.3 million payable to 194 average schedule study areas in 2016. This is an increase of $3.3 million from current average schedule payments, which is attributable to a change in payment rules that took effect on July 1, 2015. The Wireline Competition Bureau is seeking comment on NECA’s proposed 2016 formula. Comments are due on or before September 24, 2015, and reply comments are due on or before October 9, 2015.