Commission Minutes | previous page
South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting
February 12, 2008, at 2:00 P.M.
State Capitol Building, Room 468
Pierre, South Dakota
MINUTES OF THE COMMISSION MEETING
Chairman Gary Hanson called the meeting to order. Present were: Vice Chairman Steve Kolbeck; Commissioner Dusty Johnson; Executive Director Patty Van Gerpen; Deputy Executive Director Heather Forney; Commission Advisor Greg Rislov; Commission Attorneys John Smith and Rolayne Wiest; Staff Attorneys Karen Cremer and Kara Semmler; Staff Analysts Harlan Best, Nathan Solem, Keith Senger, Bob Knadle, Daris Ormesher; and Dave Jacobson; Consumer Affairs Supervisor Deb Gregg; and Administrative Secretary Demaris Axthelm.
Joining the meeting by telephone were: Colleen Sevold, and Jason Topp, Qwest Corporation; Kristy McDermott, Long Lines Wireless, LLC and DakotaComm LLC; and Mike Massey, FiberComm, LC.
- Status Report on Consumer Utility Inquiries and Complaints Received by the Commission. (Consumer Affairs: Deb Gregg)
Ms. Deb Gregg reported that the Commission had received a total of 107 contacts since the last report was prepared for the January 29, 2008, Commission meeting. 25 of the contacts involved telecommunications services; 15 contacts involved electricity issues; 5 contacts involved natural gas issues; 1 contact involved electrical and natural gas services, 18 contacts involved cellular phone issues; 27 contacts involved the Do Not Call Registry; 1 contact involved the Grain Warehouse Division and 14 contacts involved issues not regulated by the Public Utilities Commission. In 2008, 225 of the 265 complaints registered have been resolved informally. In 2007, 2,270 of the 2,337 complaints registered have been resolved informally.
Ms. Kristy McDermott stated Long Lines Wireless, LLC (Long Lines) is a company owned facility based wireless provider and currently has 33 towers in operation in South Dakota. Long Lines Wireless will provide service to requested service areas via its own facilities, not through any resale methods. Mr. Harlan Best stated that Long Lines is able to provide the nine services pursuant to 47 CFR Section 54.201(d)(1), has filed a two year plan, is capable of handling emergency situations and spikes, and is capable of providing equal access service. Mr. Best recommended granting Long Lines ETC status and providing a letter of certification to the FCC and to the USAC. Commissioner asked several questions regarding services, ETC funds, and coverage that will be provided. Ms. Rolayne Wiest stated that Long Lines is asking for partial designation and SD PUC does not allow partial ETC wireless designations. She stated the company will also have to submit a cream-skimming analysis. Chairman Hanson stated that Long Lines needs to follow up with Staff on the topics discussed; therefore, no action will be taken at this time.
2. TC07-013 - In the Matter of North Shore Marketing's Failure to Register as a Telemarketer and the Solicitations it made to those Registered on the Do Not Call Registry. (Staff Attorney: Kara Semmler)
Ms. Kara Semmler stated that Staff has resolved the complaint filed against North Shore Marketing (North Shore). Ms. Semmler further stated that all South Dakota phone calls made by North Shore have stopped and further stated that the Consumers had no objections to dismissing the complaint. Ms Semmler stated that she has advised the consumers to follow up with the FCC as North Shore appears to have a national presence and there may be other complaints filed in other states.
Commissioner Kolbeck moved to Dismiss and Close Docket TC07-013. Motion passed 3-0.
3. TC07-093 - In the Matter of the Filing by DakotaComm, LLC for an Extension of an Exemption from Developing Company Specific Cost-Based Switched Access Rates. (Staff Analyst: Keith Senger, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)
Ms. Kristy McDermott stated that at this time DakotaComm has no intrastate access and therefore DakotaComm asked to withdraw its access tariff. Mr. Keith Senger gave background history of DakotaComm and recommended granting the request for withdrawal with the condition that DakotaComm file a switched access tariff and get Commission approval for that tariff prior to billing and or collecting an intrastate switched access rate.
Commissioner Johnson moved to grant the withdrawal of the tariff and that DakotaComm file a switched access tariff and have Commission approval for the tariff prior to billing or collecting a switched access rate. Motion passed 3-0.
4. TC07-101 - In the Matter of the Filing by Sage Telecom, Inc. for a Certificate of Authority to Provide Local Exchange and Interexchange Telecommunication Services in South Dakota. (Staff Analyst: Keith Senger, Staff Attorney: Kara Semmler)
Mr. Keith Senger stated that on September 9, 2007, Sage Telecom, Inc. (Sage) filed an application for a Certificate of Authority to provide Local and Interexchange telecommunications service in South Dakota. Mr. Senger further stated that Sage has provided its parent company's financial statements but does not produce financial statements on a subsidiary level. Therefore, the applicant has requested a waiver from filing financial statements in accordance with ARSD 20:10:24:02(8) and 20:10:32:03(12). Mr. Senger also stated that the applicant has provided the Commission with the $25,000 requested bond. Staff recommended that the Commission grant Sage a local exchange authority, subject to rural safeguards, and statewide interexchange authority and with the continuing bond requirement.
Chairman Hanson moved to grant a Certificate of Authority to Sage Telecom, Inc subject to a continuous $25,000 surety bond and shall authorize Sage to offer its local exchange services in South Dakota, except in those areas served by a rural telephone company, and interexchange authority. Motion passed 3-0.
5. TC07-127 - In the Matter of the Filing by Sage Telecom, Inc. for Approval of its Intrastate Switched Access Tariff and for an Exemption from Developing Company Specific Cost-Based Switched Access Rates. (Staff Analyst: Keith Senger, Staff Attorney: Kara Semmler)
Mr. Keith Senger stated that on December 27, 2007, Sage Telecom, Inc. (Sage) requested an exemption from filing company specific cost based switch access rates and Sage has requested its switched access rate be capped at the ILEC Qwest Corporation rates. Mr. Senger further stated that Sage has request a waiver from the three year filing requirement of ARSD 20:10:27:07, from a waiver of 20:10:27:12 and 13 so it can mirror Qwest Corporation rates. Staff recommended that the Commission waive the exemption from filing company specific cost based switched access rates and allow Sage to mirror the Qwest Corporation rates. Staff further recommended that Sage be allowed to file adjustments to its intrastate switched access tariff and rates so long as those rates either mirror or are lower than Qwest rates or until the Commission orders otherwise.
Commissioner Johnson moved to approve the Intrastate Switched Access Tariff, approve Sage's petition to be exempt from establishing company specific cost-based switched access rates pursuant to ARSD 20:10:27:11 and grany, Sage waivers of ARSD 20:10:27:07, ARSD 20:10:27:12 and 20:10:27:13. Commissioner Johnson further moved that Sage be allowed to mirror Qwest Corporation's switched access rates and file adjustments to its switched access rates so long as those adjustments either mirror Qwest Corporation's rates or are lower or until the Commission shall otherwise order. Motion passed 3-0.
Ms. Kara Semmler stated the agreement has been properly file, has been properly executed and does not appear to contain discriminatory provisions. No comments were filed and Ms. Semmler recommended approval of the interconnection agreement.
Vice Chairman Kolbeck moved to approve the Interconnection agreement in Docket TC08-002. Motion passed 3-0.
Mr. Jason Topp asked the Commission to grant Qwest Corporation's (Qwest) request for a waiver of the cost study requirement because (1) producing such a study is costly and consumes a great deal of resources; and (2) Qwest does not intend to raise access rates at this time and does not anticipate it in the near future. Mr. Harlan Best stated that no parties had filed: intervention and Mr. Best further stated that ARSD 20:10:27:07 requires a carrier's carrier to file cost data in support of its switched access service tariff no less than once every three years and Qwest's three year criteria is due according to Docket TC05-006. Mr. Best stated that Staff recommended that the Commission grant the waiver request for a three year period.
Chairman Hanson moved to grant the waiver request in Docket TC08-003. Motion passed 3-0.
There being no further business, at the hour of 3:00 pm the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting adjourned.
/S/Demaris Axthelm______ ________