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Consumer Contact List -- 2-line captioned telephone, captioning exemption, CAD re-charter

To: Consumer Contact List
From: Karen Peltz Strauss, RERC-TA
Re: Consumer Contact List - 2-line captioned telephone, captioning exemption, CAC re-charter
Date: December 24, 2004

1. Happy Holidays!! I wish everyone a joyful holiday season and a wonderful New Year - may the upcoming year bring peace and access to all! Thank you to everyone who has been supportive over the past year on the many issues brought to you through this list. (Now, on to the update. . . )

2. Petitions released for public comment on 2-line captioned telephone service: Ultratec, Sprint and Hamilton have petitioned the FCC to provide two line captioned telephone service, a service that enables users to use their telephones as if they were not going through any relay service (allowing direct access to 911, and other telephone features). NECA has filed a petition proposing that the costs of incoming interstate 2-line VCO calls, which do not have identifiable geographic locators, be divided between the state (90%) and interstate TRS funds (10%). The same cost allocation method is used for 900 calls. Comments on both petitions are due on January 7, 2005. Reply comments are due on January 19, 2005.

Established. Comments Due: 01/07/2005. Reply Comments Due: 01/19/2005.
CGB. Contact: Dana Jackson at (202) 418-2247, TTY: (202) 418-7898,

3. Request for Captioning Exemption - Lewis Memorial Baptist Church has requested an exemption from the closed captioning mandates. A link to the petition is listed below.

CAPTIONING RULES CSR 6283. (DA No. 04-3986). MB. Contact: Sonia
Greenaway-Mickle or Steve Garner at (202) 418-7200, TTY: (202) 418-7172

4. FCC to re-charter Consumer Advisory Committee (CAC) - Below is a notice about the FCC's decision to renew the CAC, which is the Commission's advisory committee on consumer and disability affairs. The deadline for applying for membership on the committee is January 31, 2005.

DA 04-3892 Released: December 14, 2004

Announcement of Rechartering, and Solicitation of Members For Consumer Advisory Committee

In this Public Notice, the Federal Communications Commission ("Commission") seeks nominations for membership on its Consumer Advisory Committee ("Committee"), a federal advisory committee that addresses consumer issues within the jurisdiction of the Commission. Applications should be submitted in accordance with the procedures outlined below.


The Commission established the Committee in November 2000 for the purpose of making recommendations regarding consumer issues within the jurisdiction of the Commission and to facilitate the participation of consumers (including people with disabilities and underserved populations, such as American Indians and persons living in rural areas) in proceedings before the Commission. See Public Notice (rel. Nov. 30, 2000), 15 FCC Rcd 23798, as published in the Federal Register (65 FR 76265, Dec. 6, 2000). On November 20, 2002, the initial Charter of the Committee terminated.

The Charter was renewed for another two (2) year term, and the name of the Committee was changed to the Consumer Advisory Committee to better reflect its mandate and activities. On November 19, 2004, the charter of the Committee was again renewed for another two (2) year term. This renewal is necessary and is in the public interest. The Committee is organized under, and will operate in accordance with, the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. App. 2 (1988).

Each meeting of the Committee will be open to the public. A notice of each meeting will be published in the Federal Register at least fifteen (15) days in advance of the meeting. Records will be maintained of each meeting and made available for public inspection.


The topics to be addressed by the Committee will include, but are not limited to, the following areas:

Consumer protection and education (e.g., cramming, slamming, consumer friendly billing, detariffing, bundling of services, Lifeline/Linkup programs, customer service, privacy, telemarketing abuses, and outreach to underserved populations, such as Native Americans and persons living in rural areas).

Access by people with disabilities (e.g., telecommunications relay services, video description, closed captioning, accessible billing and access to telecommunications products and services). Impact upon consumers of new and emerging technologies (e.g., availability of broadband, digital television, cable, satellite, low power FM, and the convergence of these and emerging technologies).

Implementation of Commission rules and consumer participation in the FCC rulemaking process. During calendar year 2005, it is anticipated that the Committee will meet in Washington, D.C. for three (3) one-day meetings. In addition, as needed, working groups or subcommittees will be established to facilitate the Committee's work between meetings of the full Committee. Meetings will be fully accessible to individuals with disabilities.


The Commission seeks applications from interested organizations or institutions, from both the public and private sectors, that wish to be considered for membership on the Committee. Selections will be made on the basis of factors such as expertise and diversity of viewpoints that are necessary to address effectively the questions before the Committee.

Applicants should be recognized experts in their fields, including, but not limited to, organizations focusing upon consumer advocacy, disabilities, underserved populations (e.g., persons living in rural areas and tribal communities), telecommunications infra-structure and equipment, telecommunications services (including wireless), and broadcast/cable services. Individuals who do not represent an organization or institution are also welcome to apply, but each individual should be aware that government ethics rules requiring financial and other disclosures may apply to such applicants.

The number of Committee members will be established to effectively accomplish the Committee's work. Members must be willing to commit to a two-year term of service, should be willing and able to attend three (3) one-day meetings per year in Washington, D.C., and are also expected to participate in deliberations of at least one working group or subcommittee. The Commission is unable to pay per diem or travel costs.


Applications should be received by the Commission no later than January 31, 2005, and should be sent to the Federal Communications Commission, Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau, Attn.: Scott Marshall, via e-mail to or, via facsimile to 202-418-6509.

Due to the extensive security screening of incoming mail since September 11, 2001, delivery of mail sent to the FCC may be delayed. Therefore, we ask that applications be submitted by email or fax. Applications will be acknowledged within five (5) business days of receipt, via a date stamped copy of the application mailed to the address of the primary representative specified in the application.

A specified application form is not required. However, applications should include the following information:

(1) The name of the organization or institution applying for Committee membership (hereinafter the "applicant"); (2) The name of the applicant's primary representative including title, postal mailing address, email address, and telephone number; (3) The name of applicant's alternate representative including title, postal mailing address, email address, and telephone number; (4) A statement of the interests represented by the applicant and a detailed description of the applicant's knowledge and qualifications to serve on the Committee; (5) A statement by the applicant indicating a willingness to serve on the Committee for a two year period of time. (6) A commitment to attend three (3) one-day meetings per year in Washington, D.C. at the applicant's own expense; and (7) A commitment to work on at least one working group or subcommittee. Members will have an initial and continuing obligation to disclose any interests in, or connections to, persons or entities that are, or will be, regulated by or have interests before the Commission.

After the applications have been reviewed, the Commission will publish a notice in the Federal Register announcing the appointment of the Committee members and the first meeting date of the Committee. All applicants will be notified via U.S. mail concerning the disposition of their applications. It is anticipated that appointments to the Committee will be made in March of 2005 with the first meeting of the Committee to occur in April of 2005.


To request materials in accessible formats for people with disabilities (Braille, large print, electronic files, audio format), send an e-mail to or call the Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau at 202-418-0530 (voice), 202-418-0432 (TTY).

For further information contact: Scott Marshall, Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau, Federal Communications Commission, 202-418-2809 (voice) or 202-418-0179 (TTY), (e-mail).

We hope you find the information in this bulletin helpful. If you would be interested in receiving a similar electronic bulletin containing more general FCC consumer information, please click on to subscribe.

This page last updated:December 24, 2004

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