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South Dakota Public Utilities Commission Meeting
July 3, 2012, at 9:30 A.M. CDT
Room 413, Capitol Building
Pierre, South Dakota

MINUTES OF THE COMMISSION MEETING

Chairman Chris Nelson called the meeting to Order. Present were: Commissioners: Kristie Fiegen and Gary Hanson; Commission Counsel: John Smith and Rolayne Wiest; Staff Attorneys: Karen Cremer, Kara Semmler, and Ryan Soye; Staff Analysts: Chris Daugaard, Brian Rounds, Matthew Tysdal, Brittany Mehlhaff, Jon Thurber, David Jacobson, and Patrick Steffensen; Consumer Affairs Supervisor: Deb Gregg; and Staff: Joy Irving.

Also present were:
Darla Rogers, Riter, Rogers, Wattier, and Northrup LLP, representing Local Exchange Carrier Association, Inc.; Bill VanCamp, Olinger, Lovald, McCahren & Reimers, P.C., representing AT&T Communications of the Midwest, Inc.; and Rich Coit, South Dakota Telecommunications Association.

Joining the meeting by telephone were:
Jessica Fyhrie, Otter Tail Power Co.; Mark Aaberg, Fort Randall Telephone Company; Marlene Bennett, Consortia Consulting, representing Fort Randall Telephone Company; Jan Kirsch, Black Hills Power, Inc.; Michael Blanchard and Terry Rajewich, Nebraska Public Power District; Wayne Sterkel, LaCreek Electric Association, Inc.; Talbot Wieczorek, Gunderson, Palmer, Nelson & Ashmore, LLC, representing Sprint Communications Company LP and Alltel Communications, Inc.; Wauneta Browne, AT&T Communications of the Midwest, Inc.; Tony Cash, 365 Wireless, LLC; Jo Shotwell, Local Exchange Carriers Association, Inc.; Bill Hunt, dishNet Wireline L.L.C.; Jason Topp, Qwest Corporation d/b/a CenturyLink QC; Pat Finnegan, Metropolitan Telecommunications of South Dakota, Inc. dba MetTel; Ann Thompson and Peg Prendergast, Sprint Communications Company LP; Arlene Morgan, Knology of the Plains, Inc. and Knology of the Black Hills, LLC.; Don Price, MCImetro Access Transmission Services LLC dba Verizon Access Transmission Services; and Kelly Faul, XO Communications Services, Inc.

Consumer Reports

1.     Status Report on Consumer Utility Inquiries and Complaints Received by the Commission (Consumer Affairs: Deb Gregg)

The Commission received a total of 77 contacts since the last report was prepared for the June 19, 2012 Commission meeting.

11 of the contacts involved telecommunication services, 25 of the contacts involved electrical services, 6 contacts involved natural gas service, 1 contact was related to gas and electric service, 9 contacts involved cell phone service, 12 contacts were related to the Do Not Call Registry, 1 contact involved the Grain Warehouse Division, and 12 contacts were related to issues not regulated by the PUC.

984 of the 1,003 complaints received in 2012 have been resolved.

Electric

1.     EL12-038     In the Matter of the Filing by Otter Tail Power Company for Approval of its Tariff Revisions (Staff Analyst: Matthew Tysdal, Staff Attorney: Ryan Soye)

Ms. Jessica Fyhrie, Otter Tail Power Company (Otter Tail) asked that the Commission approve its General Rules and Regulations Sections 5.02 and 5.04 to reflect the agreement made between Commission staff and Otter Tail in EL10-011 regarding the collection of all fuel and purchased power costs. Mr. Matthew Tysdal, staff analyst, recommended that the Commission grant approval of Otter Tail's tariff revisions.

     Commissioner Fiegen moved to approve the tariff revisions. Motion carried 3-0.

2.     EL12-039     In the Matter of the Filing by Otter Tail Power Company for Approval of Tariff Revisions (Staff Analyst: Matthew Tysdal, Staff Attorney: Ryan Soye)

Ms. Jessica Fyhrie, Otter Tail Power Company (Otter Tail) asked that the Commission approve its revisions to Section 16.00, Sheet Nos. 1 and 4 of its Tariff Book. Ms. Fyhrie stated that its contract with deviations between Otter Tail and the Town of Brandt and the Town of Wentworth expired on July 1, 2012, and the new agreements for municipal services bring rates within Otter Tail's current tariff on file with the Commission. Mr. Matthew Tysdal, staff analyst, recommended that the Commission grant approval of Otter Tail's tariff revisions.

     Commissioner Hanson moved to approve the tariff revisions. Motion carried 3-0.

3.     EL12-042     In the Matter of the Filing by Black Hills Power, Inc. for Approval of Tariff Revisions (Staff Analyst: Matthew Tysdal, Staff Attorney: Ryan Soye)

Ms. Jan Kirsch, Black Hills Power, Inc. (BHP), asked that the Commission approve the revisions to its Tariff Book. Ms. Kirsch explained that BHP has proposed revisions to Section 6.00, Sheet Nos. 2, 3, 4, and 5, as well as the elimination and reservation for future use of Cost Adjustment Tariffs in Section 3C that are no longer effective for its South Dakota customers. Mr. Matthew Tysdal, staff analyst, recommended that the Commission grant approval with an effective date of July 3, 2012.

     Commissioner Fiegen moved to approve the tariff revisions with an effective date of July 3, 2012.Motion carried 3-0.

4.     EL12-043     In the Matter of the Request for Approval of an Electric Service Territory Boundary Agreement between LaCreek Electric Association, Inc. and Nebraska Public Power District (Staff Analyst: Ross Pedersen, Staff Attorney: Ryan Soye)

Ross Pedersen, staff analyst, explained that the filings are part of the GIS mapping project to verify all South Dakota electric service territory boundaries for input in the ArcMap software. Mr. Pedersen stated that this docket reflects changes in Shannon County to Sections 23 and 36 of Township 36 North, Range 45 West, Section 31 of Township 36 North, Range 44 West, along with identification of exceptions served by both parties. The changes are represented on the maps found on Exhibit B. The changes were made in order to accurately reflect the areas served by both parties and to create a legal description that is clear and straightforward. He recommended that the Commission grant approval.

     Commissioner Hanson moved to approve the proposed electric service territory boundary agreement. Motion carried 3-0.

Telecommunications

1.     In the Matter of the Petition for Arbitration Pursuant to the Telecommunications Act of 1996 to Resolve Issues Relating to an Interconnection Agreement in Dockets TC07-111, TC07-112, TC07-113, TC07-115 and TC07-116

     TC07-111     In the Matter of the Petition of Alliance Communications Cooperative, Inc. for Arbitration Pursuant to the Telecommunications Act of 1996 to Resolve Issues Relating to an Interconnection Agreement with Alltel Communications, Inc. (Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

     TC07-112     In the Matter of the Petition of McCook Cooperative Telephone Company for Arbitration Pursuant to the Telecommunications Act of 1996 to Resolve Issues Relating to an Interconnection Agreement with Alltel Communications, Inc. (Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

     TC07-113     In the Matter of the Petition of Beresford Municipal Telephone Company for Arbitration Pursuant to the Telecommunications Act of 1996 to Resolve Issues Relating to an Interconnection Agreement with Alltel Communications, Inc. (Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

     TC07-115     In the Matter of the Petition of Santel Communications Cooperative, Inc. for Arbitration Pursuant to the Telecommunications Act of 1996 to Resolve Issues Relating to an Interconnection Agreement with Alltel Communications, Inc. (Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

     TC07-116     In the Matter of the Petition of West River Cooperative Telephone Company for Arbitration Pursuant to the Telecommunications Act of 1996 to Resolve Issues Relating to an Interconnection Agreement with Alltel Communications, Inc. (Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Karen Cremer, staff attorney, stated that this matter is moot and recommended that the Commission dismiss and close the dockets. Mr. Talbot Wieczorek, representing Alltel Communications, Inc. agreed that the dockets can be closed.

     Commissioner Hanson moved to dismiss and close the above dockets in TC07-111, TC07-112, TC07-113, TC07-115, and TC07-116. Motion carried 3-0.

2.     TC12-036     In the Matter of the Filing by AT&T Communications of the Midwest, Inc. for Approval of Revisions to its Access Services Tariff (Staff Analyst: Patrick Steffensen, Staff Attorney: Kara Semmler)

Mr. Bill Van Camp, representing AT&T Communications of the Midwest, Inc (AT&T), asked that the Commission approve the revisions to its Access Services Tariff.  Mr. VanCamp stated AT&T requested an effective date for this revision of July 1, 2012. Mr. Patrick Steffensen, staff analyst, stated that staff reviewed AT&T's tariff revisions for compliance with the transitional terminating switched access rate provisions of the recent FCC order.  Mr. Steffensen explained AT&T has elected to use its intrastate rate elements for the transition period and decrease its terminating tandem-switched transport and switching charge elements to provide the required revenue reduction.  At the June 19th Commission meeting, AT&T was granted waivers from the specific provisions in rules ARSD 20:10:29:10, 20:10:29:12, and 20:10:29:16 that state "the per minute charge is equal for both originating and terminating traffic." He recommended that the Commission grant approval of the revisions with a July 1, 2012 effective date.

     Commissioner Fiegen moved to approve the requested tariff changes with an effective date of July 1, 2012. Motion carried 3-0.

3.     TC12-037     In the Matter of the Application of 365 Wireless, LLC for a Certificate of Authority to Provide Interexchange Long Distance Services and Local Exchange Services in South Dakota (Staff Analyst: Patrick Steffensen, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Mr. Patrick Steffensen, staff analyst, explained that on May 4, 2012, 365 Wireless, LLC filed an application for a Certificate of Authority to provide interexchange long distance and local exchange service in accordance with the Commission's Administrative Rules.  On June 25, 2012, 365 Wireless filed a letter requesting withdrawal of the interexchange COA application. Staff recommended that the Commission grant the Certificate of Authority to provide local exchange services to 365 Wireless with the following conditions: 1) 365 Wireless is not to offer any prepaid services, including prepaid calling cards; 2) 365 Wireless is not to accept or require deposits or advance payments without prior approval from the Commission; 3) the Commission grant the requested waiver ARSD 20:10:24:02(9), as 365 Wireless does not compile a Cash Flow Statement; and 4) the certificate is subject to the rural safeguards.
        
     Commissioner Nelson moved to grant the Certificate of Authority to provide Local Exchange Services to 365 Wireless, LLC with the conditions outlined by staff. Motion carried 3-0.

4.     TC12-040     In the Matter of the Filing by Local Exchange Carrier Association, Inc. for Approval of Revisions to its Access Services Tariff No. 1 (Staff Analyst: Chris Daugaard, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Darla Rogers, representing LECA, asked the Commission approve all the revised tariff sheets filed with the exception of sheet 17-4.5 (City of Brookings). Mr. Bill VanCamp, representing AT&T Communications of the Midwest, Inc. (AT&T), asked that sheet 17-4.5 not be approved at this time. Mr. Chris Daugaard, staff analyst, recommended that the Commission grant approval of all requested tariff revisions except sheet 17-4.5 pertaining to the Brookings Municipal Telephone Department.

     Commissioner Hanson moved to approve the revisions to the Access Services Tariff No. 1 with the exception of sheet 17-4.5, with an effective date of July 1, 2012. Motion carried 3-0.

5.     TC12-043     In the Matter of the Filing by dishNET Wireline L.L.C. for Approval of its Access Services Tariff No. 2 (Staff Analyst: David Jacobson, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Mr. David Jacobson, staff analyst, explained this filing was made to change the name on the tariff to the new name of the applicant. Mr. Jacobson stated that in reviewing the tariff, staff found some typographical errors and changes that need to be made to the limitation of the liability section. He stated the company has made those changes and recommended that the Commission grant approval to dishNET Wireline L.L.C. for Access Services Tariff No. 2.

     Commissioner Fiegen moved to approve the revisions to the switched exchange access tariff. Motion carried 3-0.

6.     TC12-063     In the Matter of the Filing by Qwest Corporation d/b/a CenturyLink QC for Approval of Revisions to its Access Service Tariff (Staff Analyst: Chris Daugaard, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Mr. Jason Topp, Qwest Corporation dba CenturyLink QC (CenturyLink), explained that this is CenturyLink's "transitional" filing in accordance with the FCC Order. Mr. Topp stated that CenturyLink has provided its calculation as how the rates have been modified. Mr. Topp asked the Commission for an effective date of July 3, 2012. Mr. Chris Daugaard, staff analyst, stated CenturyLink chose to make its reduction in the carrier common line portion of the tariff and retain the intrastate rate structure for the interim year. Staff recommended that the Commission grant approval with a July 3, 2012, effective date.

     Commissioner Nelson moved to approve the requested tariff changes with an effective date of July 3, 2012. Motion carried 3-0.

7.     TC12-064     In the Matter of the Filing by Metropolitan Telecommunications of South Dakota, Inc. dba MetTel for Approval of Revisions to its Access Services Tariff No. 3 (Staff Analyst: Patrick Steffensen, Staff Attorney: Kara Semmler)

Mr. Patrick Steffensen, staff analyst, stated staff has reviewed the Metropolitan Telecommunications' tariff revisions for compliance with the transitional terminating switched access rate provisions of the recent FCC order.  MetTel has elected to use its interstate access rate elements, while adding a transitional rate element, to provide the required revenue reduction.  On June 25, 2012, the Commission received a request for waivers from the specific provisions in rules ARSD 20:10:29:10, 20:10:29:12, and 20:10:29:16 that state "the per minute charge is equal for both originating and terminating traffic."  Staff recommended approval of the waivers from those specific rule provisions and approval of the tariff revisions with a July 1, 2012 effective date.
        
     Commissioner Nelson moved to approve the waivers and requested tariff changes with the July 1, 2012 effective date. Motion carried 3-0.

8.     TC12-065     In the Matter of the Joint Application of the OrbitCom, Inc., Knology of the Plains, Inc. and Knology of the Black Hills, LLC for Waiver of ARSD ยงยง 20:10:29:10, 20:10:29:12 and 20:10:29:16 (Staff Analyst: David Jacobson, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer) 

Mr. Talbot Wieczorek, representing Sprint Communications Company, L.P. (Sprint), asked that the Commission grant Sprint's waiver request. Ms. Karen Cremer, staff attorney, recommended that the Commission waive or suspend until the Commission orders otherwise the specific provisions in rules ARSD 20:10:29:10, 20:10:29:12, and 20:10:29:16 that state the per minute charge is equal to both originating or terminating traffic.  

     Commissioner Nelson moved to suspend or waive the requirements identified in the last sentence of ARSD 20:10:29:10, 20:10:29:12, and 20:10:29:16 until the Commission should decide otherwise. Motion carried 3-0.

9.     TC12-083     In the Matter of the Filing by Sprint Communications Company L.P. for Approval of Revisions to its Access Service Tariff No. 3 (Staff Analyst: Patrick Steffensen, Staff Attorney: Kara Semmler)

Ms. Ann Thompson, Sprint Communications Company, L.P. (Sprint) asked that the Commission approve its revisions to Sprint's Access Service Tariff No. 3 to reduce rates for Terminating Switched Access. Ms. Thompson explained that Sprint proposed to reduce its terminating rates to parity with its interstate access rates effective July 1, 2012. Mr. Patrick Steffensen, staff analyst, explained that staff reviewed the Sprint tariff revisions for compliance with the transitional terminating switched access rate provisions of the recent FCC order. He stated Sprint has elected to decrease its terminating intrastate access rates immediately to interstate levels, as opposed to using a transitional 50% revenue reduction. Mr. Steffensen recommended that the Commission grant approval of the revisions with a July 1, 2012 effective date.

     Commissioner Fiegen moved to approve the requested tariff changes with a July 1, 2012 effective date. Motion carried 3-0.

10.     TC12-088     In the Matter of the Filing by Knology Community Telephone, Inc. for Approval of Revisions to its Access Service Tariff No. 1 (Staff Analyst: Brian Rounds, Staff Attorney: Kara Semmler)

Ms. Arlene Morgan, Knology Community Telephone, Inc. (Knology), asked that the Commission grant approval to its tariff changes. Mr. Brian Rounds, staff analyst, recommended approval with an effective date of July 1, 2012, to Knology's Access Service Tariff No. 1 to reflect rate reductions and the addition of a transitional terminating rate in accordance with the FCC's Order on Intercarrier Compensation Reform.

     Commissioner Hanson moved to approve the requested tariff changes with an effective date of July 1, 2012. Motion carried 3-0.

11.     TC12-089     In the Matter of the Filing by Knology of the Plains, Inc. for Approval of Revisions to its Access Service Tariff No. 1 (Staff Analyst: Brian Rounds, Staff Attorney: Kara Semmler)

Ms. Arlene Morgan, Knology of the Plains, Inc. asked that the Commission grant approval of its tariff revisions, with a requested effective date of July 1, 2012. Ms. Morgan explained that Knology's Access Service Tariff No. 1 would reflect rate reductions and the addition of a transitional terminating rate in accordance with the FCC's Order on Intercarrier Compensation Reform. Mr. Brian Rounds, staff analyst, recommended that the Commission grant approval with an effective date of July 1, 2012.

     Commissioner Hanson moved to approve the requested tariff changes with an effective date of July 1, 2012. Motion carried 3-0.

12.     TC12-090     In the Matter of the Filing by Fort Randall Telephone Company for Approval of Revisions to its Access Service Tariff (Staff Analyst: Chris Daugaard, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Ms. Marlene Bennett, Fort Randall Telephone Company (Fort Randall) asked that the Commission approve its revisions, with a requested effective date of July 1, 2012, to its Access Service Tariff. Mr. Chris Daugaard, staff analyst, stated Fort Randall chose to split its reduction between the carrier common line and local switching elements and retain its intrastate rate structure. Staff recommended that the Commission grant approval to the tariff revisions with an effective date of July 1, 2012.

     Commissioner Hanson moved to approve the requested tariff changes with an effective date of July 1, 2012. Motion carried 3-0. 

13.     TC12-091     In the Matter of the Filing by MCImetro Access Transmission Services LLC dba Verizon Access Transmission Services for Approval of Revisions to its Access Service Tariff No. 2 (Staff Analyst: Brian Rounds, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Mr. Don Price, MCImetro Access Transmission Services LLC dba Verizon Access Transmission Services (Verizon Access) asked that the Commission approve its revisions to its Access Service Tariff No. 2 in compliance with the FCC. Mr. Brian Rounds recommended that the Commission grant approval to Verizon Access tariff revisions with an effective date of July 1, 2012.

     Commissioner Nelson moved to approve the requested tariff changes with an effective date of July 1, 2012. Motion carried 3-0.

14.     TC12-093     In the Matter of the Filing by XO Communications Services, Inc. for Approval of Revisions to its Access Service Tariff (Staff Analyst: Brian Rounds, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Ms. Kelly Faul, XO Communications Services, Inc. (XO), asked the Commission for approval of its tariff revisions made in compliance with the FCC Report and Order 11-161.  Ms. Faul requested an effective date of July 3, 2012. Mr. Brian Rounds, staff analyst recommended that the Commission grant approval.

     Commissioner Nelson moved to approve the requested tariff changes with an effective date of July 3, 2012. Motion carried 3-0.

15.     TC12-096     In the Matter of the Filing by Qwest Corporation dba CenturyLink QC for Approval of Revisions to its Access Service Tariff (Staff Analyst: Chris Daugaard, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Mr. Jason Topp, Qwest Corporation dba CenturyLink QC (CenturyLink), asked that the Commission approve its tariff revisions. Mr. Topp explained that the tariff revisions for the Identification and Rating of VoIP-PSTN Traffic were made to be in compliance with the Federal Communications Commission's April 25, 2012, Second Order on Reconsideration in WC Docket No. 10-90, FCC Release No. 12-47. Mr. Topp requested an effective date of July 13, 2012. Mr. Chris Daugaard, staff analyst, recommended that the Commission grant approval.

     Commissioner Fiegen moved to approve the requested tariff changes with an effective date of July 13, 2012. Motion carried 3-0.

16.     TC12-097     In the Matter of the Filing by Knology of the Black Hills, LLC for Approval of Revisions to its Access Service Tariff No. 1 (Staff Analyst: Brian Rounds, Staff Attorney: Karen Cremer)

Ms. Arlene Morgan, Knology of the Black Hills, LLC (Knology) asked that the Commission grant approval of its tariff revisions, with a requested effective date of July 1, 2012. Ms. Morgan explained that the tariff revision reflects the reductions within rates and an addition of a transitional terminating rate in accordance with the FCC's Order on Intercarrier Compensation Reform. Ms. Morgan requested an effective date of July 1, 2012. Mr. Brian Rounds, staff analyst, recommended that the Commission grant approval to Knology's tariff revisions.

     Commissioner Nelson moved to approve the requested tariff changes with an effective date of July 1, 2012. Motion carried 3-0.

17.     TC12-098     In the Matter of the Filing by Sprint Communications Company L.P. for Approval of Revisions to its Access Service Tariff No. 3 (Staff Analyst: Patrick Steffensen, Staff Attorney: Kara Semmler)

Ms. Peg Prendergast, Sprint Communications Company, L.P. (Sprint), asked that the Commission approve its tariff revisions. Mr. Patrick Steffensen, staff analyst, stated that staff has reviewed Sprint's tariff revisions for compliance with the VoIP-PSTN provisions of the recent FCC Order and subsequent Clarification Order.  Mr. Steffensen explained that after staff analysis and recommendation, Sprint submitted revised tariff pages, which provide additional clarity to rates and their effective dates, allow an extended timeframe for customers to provide initial PVU factors, and bring originating rates in parity with Qwest.  Mr. Steffensen recommended that the Commission grant approval of the tariff with an effective date of July 13, 2012.

     Commissioner Hanson moved to approve the requested tariff changes with an effective date of July 13, 2012. Motion carried 3-0.

There being no further business, at the hour of 10:33 a.m. the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission meeting adjourned.

/S/Joy Irving
Joy Irving
Administrative Assistant
puc@state.sd.us
July 3, 2012