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New ARMIS Reporting Rules Would Place Needless Burden on Small Operators

ACA Opposes FCC Proposal, Questions Need for Additional Data Reporting

PITTSBURGH, December 16, 2008 - In a filing (available here) yesterday with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the American Cable Association (ACA) opposed placing new Automated Reporting Management Information System (ARMIS) reporting requirements on small and medium-sized cable providers. ACA urged the Commission to consider that its members already submit substantial amounts of similar data to the Commission, and the undue burden and negative impact that new ARMIS rules would have on smaller operators wanting to deploy advanced services in underserved areas. The proposed rules, outlined by the Commission in a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) released on September 6, would establish new ARMIS reporting requirements for all phone and broadband service providers. 

"The benefits of collecting this additional phone and broadband data are speculative at best," said ACA President and CEO Matthew M. Polka. "Without more, the Commission should not place any new ARMIS reporting requirements on small and medium-sized cable operators. ACA and its members urge the Commission to consider the strain that additional reporting requirements will have on small operators' limited resources, and the impediment it will cause to deployment of advanced services in small markets and rural areas." 

In yesterday's filing, ACA calls attention to the Commission's failure to establish the need for collecting new information from cable providers that service small markets and rural areas. Citing the Commission's own recognition that the reporting obligations set to be imposed on cable broadband providers "might" be useful without elaborating on the value or necessity of that data. ACA also requested that any information collected by the new ARMIS obligation be kept confidential.

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About the American Cable Association

Based in Pittsburgh, the American Cable Association is a trade organization representing 1,100 smaller and medium-sized, independent cable companies who provide broadband services for more than 7 million cable subscribers primarily located in rural and smaller suburban markets across America.  Through active participation in the regulatory and legislative process in Washington, D.C., ACA's members work together to advance the interests of their customers and ensure the future competitiveness and viability of their business. For more information, visit www.americancable.org.

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