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South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting
December 16, 2008, at 1:30 P.M.
Room 413, Capitol Building
Pierre, South Dakota

MINUTES OF THE COMMISSION MEETING

Chairman Dusty Johnson called the meeting to order.  Present were: Commissioners Gary Hanson and Steve Kolbeck; Executive Director Patty Van Gerpen; Deputy Executive Director Heather Forney; Commission Advisor Greg Rislov; Commission Attorneys Rolayne Wiest and John Smith; Staff Attorneys Kara Semmler and Karen Cremer; Staff Analysts Terri LaBrie Baker, Nathan Solem, Stacy Splittstoesser, Bob Knadle, Tim Binder and Jon Thurber; and Administrative Secretary Demaris Axthelm.

Also present were:  Dave Gerdes, May, Adam, Gerdes and Thompson, representing Midcontinent Communications.

Joining the meeting by telephone were: Mary Lohnes, Midcontinent Communications; George Thomson, Qwest Corporation; and Tom Simmons, Midcontinent Communications.

MINUTES OF THE AD HOC COMMISSION MEETING

Telecommunications

1.      TC06-007        In the Matter of the Petition of Level 3 Communications, LLC for Arbitration of an Interconnection Agreement with Qwest Corporation. (Commission Attorney: Rolayne Ailts Wiest)

         Ms. Rolayne Wiest, Commission Attorney stated that Qwest requested a deferral on this item. 

         Vice Chairman Kolbeck moved that the Commission defer TC06-007.  Motion passed 3-0.

2.      TC07-117        In the Matter of the Petition of Midcontinent Communications for Approval of its Switched Access Rates. (Staff Analyst: Jon Thurber, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

         See link to listen to the December 16, 2008, Ad Hoc Commission Meeting:
http://media.sd.gov/ramgen/puc/puc121608.rm    
           
         Chairman Johnson moved that the Commission deny Midcontinent's exemption from developing company specific cost based switched access rates.  Motion passed 3-0.

         Chairman Johnson moved that the Commission put in effect interim switched access rates at the level requested by Midcontinent and its cost study, subject to refund with interest and moved that the Commission waive ARSD 20:10:27:04 and 20:10:27:10.  Motion failed 2-1.

         Commissioner Johnson moved that the Commission begin a cost study analysis process to fully test and evaluate the filed cost study, impose a filing fee, and require Midcontinent to file a tariff. Motion passed 3-0.

         Commissioner Johnson moved that the Commission redirect Docket RM05-002 from a general switched access docket to a specific CLEC rule making docket and additionally directed staff to provide a Strowman proposal within 180 days.  Motion passed 3-0.

         Commissioner Johnson stated that as a result of the Commission's action in denying Midcontinent's proposed rates as an interim rate, Midcontinent's current rate will remain in effect.

3.      In the Matter of the Failure of Certain Telecommunications Companies to Timely File the Gross Receipts Tax (Deputy Executive Director: Heather K. Forney)

        Ms. Heather Forney, Deputy Executive Director, stated that of the sixteen companies included on the agenda for failure to file a report or pay the gross receipts tax, four have withdrawn their Certificates of Authority, leaving twelve companies which remain in non-compliance. Ms. Forney recommended that an order to show cause be issued to each of the twelve companies remaining in non-compliance as to why the company should not be fined or have its Certificate of Authority suspended or revoked. The twelve companies remaining in non-compliance are:

Wireless Companies that have not filed or paid:
TeleCommunications Systems Corporation of Maryland
Ztar Mobile, Inc.

Local Exchange Providers that have not filed or paid:
Pacific Centrex Services, Inc.
Trinsic Communications, Inc.
VanCo Direct USA, LLC

Local Exchange Providers that have filed, but not paid:
Metropolitan Telecommunications of South Dakota, Inc.

Long Distance Providers that have filed, but not paid:
Business Productivity Solutions, Inc.
GTC Telecom Corp d/b/a GTC Telecom
Yak Communications (America) Inc.

Long Distance Providers that have not filed or paid:
Epixtar Communications Corp
Telecom Resources, Inc. d/b/a TRINetwork, Inc.
WinStar Communications, LLC

          Commissioner Hanson moved to issue an order to show cause as to why the Commission should not fine, or suspend or revoke the Certificate of Authority of each of the remaining non-compliant companies for failure to pay the requisite gross receipts tax.  Motion passed 3-0.

There being no further business, at the hour of 2:15 pm the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting adjourned.

 

_/S/Demaris Axthelm____
Demaris Axthelm
Administrative Secretary
January 27, 2009