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Subject 515-12-1 TELEPHONE SERVICE

Rule 515-12-1-.01 Definitions

Terms used in these rules have the following meaning:

(a) "Average Busy Season--Busy Hour Traffic"--The average traffic volume for the busy season, busy hours.
(b) "Base Rate Area"--A specific area within an exchange service area as set forth in the telephone utilities' tariffs, maps or descriptions. Local exchange service within this area is furnished at uniform rates without extra mileage charges.
(c) "Business Service"--Telecommunications service provided a customer where the use is primarily or substantially of a business, professional, institutional or otherwise occupational nature.
(d) "Busy Hour"--The two consecutive half-hours each day during which the greatest volume of traffic is handled in the office.
(e) "Busy Season"--That period of the year during which the greatest volume of traffic is handled in the office.
(f) "Calls"--Customers' telephone messages attempted.
(g) "Central Office"--A switching unit, in a telecommunications system which provides service to the general public, having the necessary equipment and operating arrangements for terminating and interconnecting customer lines and trunks or trunks only. There maybe more than one central office in a building.
(h) "Channel"--A path for communication between two or more stations or telephone utility offices, furnished in such a manner as the carrier may elect, whether by wire, radio or a combination thereof and whether or not by a single physical facility or route.
(i) "Class of Service"--A description of telecommunications service fumished a customer which denotes such characteristics as nature of use (business or residence) type of rate (flat rate or message rate). Classes of service are usually subdivided in "grades," such as individual line, two-party or four-party.
(j) "Commission"--The Georgia Public Service Commission.
(k) "Customer"--Any person, firm, partnership, corporation, municipality, cooperative, organization, governmental agency, etc., provided with telecommunications service by any utility.
(l) "Customer Trouble Report"--Any oral or written report from a customer or user of telecommunication service relating to a physical defector to difficulty or dissatisfaction with the operation of the utility's facilities. This oral or written report should be made to a telephone company service representative on duty. Oral or written report should be made to the telephone company business office, or by calling repair service number as listed in the telephone directory. One report shall be counted for each oral or written report received although it may duplicate a previous report or merely involve an inquiry concerning progress on a previous report. Also, a separate report shall be counted for each telephone or PBX switchboard position reported in trouble when several items are reported by one customer at the same time, unless the group of troubles so reported is clearly related to a common cause.
(m) "Exchange"--A unit established by a telephone utility for the administration of telecommunication service in a specified area for which a separate local rate schedule is provided. It may consist of one or more central offices together with associated plant facilities used in furnishing telecommunication services in that area.
(n) "Exchange Service Area"--The geographical territory served by an exchange, usually embracing a city, town or village and its environs.
(o) "Grade of Service"--The number of parties (main stations) served on a telephone line such as one-party, two-party, four-party, etc.
(p) "Individual Line Service"--A classification of exchange service which provides that only one main station shall be served by the circuit connecting such station with the central office equipment.
(q) "Intercept Service"--A service arrangement provided by the utility whereby calls placed to a disconnected or discontinued telephone number are intercepted and the calling party is informed that the called telephone number has been disconnected or discontinued, or changed to another number, or that calls are being received by another telephone, etc.
(r) "Interexchange Trunks"--Transmission paths, including the conductors and associated equipment, connecting two exchanges.
(s) "Line"--A general term used in the communication industry in several different senses, the most important of which are:
1. The conductor or conductors and supporting or containing structures extending between customer stations and central offices, or between central offices whether they be in the same or different communities.
2. The conductors and circuit apparatus associated with a particular communication channel.
3. Any communication channel between two points disregarding the method of its derivation.
(t) "Local Calling Area"--The area within which telecommunication service is furnished customers under a specific schedule or exchange rates. A local calling area may include one or more exchange service areas or portions of exchange service areas.
(u) "Local Exchange Service"--Telecommunication service provided within local exchange service areas in accordance with the tariffs. It includes the use of exchange facilities required to establish connections between stations within the exchange and between stations and the toll facilities serving the exchange.
(v) "Local Message"--A completed call between stations located within the same local calling area.
(w) "Local Message Charge"--The charge that applies for a completed telephone call that is made when the calling station and the stations to which the connection is established are both within the same local calling area, and a local message charge is applicable.
(x) "Local Service Charge"--The charge for furnishing facilities to enable a customer to send or receive telecommunications within the local service calling area. This local service calling area may include one or more exchange service areas.
(y) "Long Distance Telecommunications Service"--That part of the total communication service rendered by a utility which is furnished between customers in different local service areas in accordance with the rates and regulations specified in the utility's tariff.
(z) "Message"--A completed customer telephone call.
(aa) "Message Rate Service"--A form of exchange service under which all originated local messages are measured and charged for in accordance with the tariff.
(bb) "Outside Plant"--The telecommunications equipment and facilities installed on, along, over or under streets, alleys, highways or on private rights-of-way between the central office and customer's locations or between central offices.
(cc) "Party Line Service"--A classification of exchange service which provides for a number of main stations to be served by the same central office line.
(dd) "Private Line"--A circuit provided to furnish communication only between the two or more telephones or other terminal devices directly connected to it, and not having connection with either central office or PBX switching apparatus.
(ee) "Public Telephone Service"--An individual line customer service equipped with a coin collecting telephone instrument installed for the use of the general public in locations where the general public has access to these telephones.
(ff) "Regrade"--An application for a different grade of service.
(gg) "Service Line"--Those facilities owned and maintained by a customer or group of customers, which lines are connected with the facilities of a telephone utility for communication service.
(hh) "Station"--A telephone instrument or other terminal device.
(ii) "Tariff"--The entire body of rates, tolls, rentals, charges, classifications and rules, adopted by the utility and filed with the Commission.
(jj) "Telephone Utility"--Any person, firm, partnership or corporation engaged in the business of furnishing telecommunication services to the public under the jurisdiction of the Georgia Public Service Commission.
(kk) "Toll Connecting Trunks"--A general classification of trunks carrying toll traffic and ordinarily extending between a local office and a toll office, except trunks classified as tributary circuits.
(ll) "Toll Station"--A telephone connected to a toll line or directly to a toll board.
(mm) "Traffic"--Telephone call volume, based on number and duration of messages.

Rule 515-12-1-.02 Records and Reports

(1) Location of Records. Unless otherwise authorized by the Commission, all records required by these rules shall be kept within the State and shall be made available to the Commission or its authorized representatives at any time upon request.
(2) Retention of Record. All records required by these rules shall be preserved for the period of time specified in the current edition of the Federal Communications Commission's records retention schedule (Title 47), unless otherwise specified by the Commission.
(3) Records to be Made Available on Request.
(a) Each telephone utility shall maintain records required by these rules in sufficient detail to permit review, and such records shall be made available to the Commission upon request.
(b) Any telephone utility that keeps its records outside the State shall reimburse the Commission for the reasonable travel expense incurred by each Commission representative (not to exceed two) during any review of the out-of-state records of the company or its affiliates. Reasonable travel expenses are those travel expenses actually incurred and paid for food, travel and lodging that are equivalent to travel expenses paid by the Commission in the ordinary course of its business.
(c) The telephone utility shall remit reimbursement for out-ofstate travel expenses within 30 days from the date the Commission mails the invoice.
(d) The reimbursement requirement in subsection (b) above shall be waived:
1. For any telephone utility that makes out-of-state records available at the company's office located in Georgia or at another mutually agreed upon location in Georgia; or
2. For a telephone utility whose records are located within 50 miles of the Georgia state line.
(4) Reports. Each telephone utility shall make either a verbal or written report promptly to the Commission of any specific occurrence or development which disrupts the service of a substantial number of its customers or which may impair the utility's ability to furnish service to 10% of local subscribers for more than 24 hours or 25% of its toll trunks during daily busy hours or toll isolation at any time.
(5) Data to be Filed with the Commission.
(a) Tariffs. Each telephone utility shall have its tariff on file with the Commission in accordance with the rules and regulations governing the filing of tariffs as prescribed by the Commission.
1. Requirements as to Size, Form, Identification, and Filing of Tariffs.
a. All tariffs shall be in loose leaf form of size eight and one-half inches by eleven inches and shall be plainly printed or reproduced on paper of good quality.
b. A margin of not less than three-fourths inch without any printing thereon shall be allowed at the binding edge of each tariff sheet.
c. Tariff sheets are to be numbered consecutively by section, sheet, and revision number. Each sheet shall show an issuing date, an effective date, a revision number, section number, sheet number, name of the company and the name of the tariff and title of the section in a consistent manner.
d. When it is desired to make changes in the rates, rules, or other provisions of the tariff, an official tariff filing shall be made to the Georgia Public Service Commission addressed as follows: Georgia Public Service Commission, 244 Washington Street, S.W., Atlanta, GA 30334.
e. The official tariff filing shall include the original and 2 copies. The filing party also shall file a 31/2" diskette containing an electronic viersion of its filing in Microsoft Word or .pdf format or in the case of a large document, a CD ROM and/or disk.
2. Transmittal Letters - Each tariff filing shall include a letter of transmittal. Each transmittal letter shall include:
a. A list of sheet filed by sheet and revision.
b. A paragraph describing the type of filing (new service, change of regulation, rate increase, rate reduction, etc.).
c. A paragraph or more briefly explaing the reasons necessary and details of operations of each new service.
d. A revenue impact statement giving the estimated net revenue that the filing will produce over a one (1) year period. Such information may be filed under the Trade Secret provisions of this Commission.
e. A notation that a copy of the filing has been served upon the Consumers' Utility Counsel. The CUC copy shall be addressed as follows: Consumers' Utility Council, 47 Trinity Avenue, S.W., 4th Floor, Atlanta, GA 30334.
3. Notice of Change; Symbols - Each tariff filing shall include new or revised sheets (original and 2 copies plus the electronic version) with notations in the right hand margin indicating each change made on these sheets. Notations to be used are (C) to signify change in regulation, (D) to signify discontinued rate or regulation, (I) to signify a rate increase, (M) to signify a move from one page to another with no change in text, (N) to signify a new rate or regulation, (R) to signify a rate reduction, (T) to signify a change in text, but no change in rate or regulation. Sheets being revised should show the next number of revision from the existing sheet and should cancel the existing sheet.

All tariff filing shall be received at the Commission offices at least the following required number of days before the date upon which they are to become effective:

* Local Exchange Companies (traditionally regulated) - 30 days. Must be approved by the Commission.

* Local Exchange Companies (alternatively regulated) - 30 days. Presumed valid when filed.

* Competitive Local Exchange Companies - 30 days. Presumed valid when filed.

* Interexchange Companies (Facility-based and Non-facilitybased) - 7 days on increases, 5 days on reductions. (See NOTE)

[NOTE] Non-facility-based reseller's tariffs are considered maximum rates. Non-facility-based reseller may file (but are not required to file) a price sheet which lists the carriers' current prices. Such price sheets are presumed valid, provided that the price listed does not exceed the maximum allowed rate contained in the reseller's tariff, and are effective on one day's notice.

4. Commission Order Tariff Filings - Tariff filings made in response to an order issued by the Georgia Public Service Commission shall include a transmittal letter stating that the tariffs attached are in compliance with the order, giving the docket number, date of the order, a list of tariff sheets filed and any other information necessary. The transmittal letter shall be exempt from all other requirements of subsection 2. above. Said tariff sheets shall comply with all rules herein and shall include all changes ordered and absolutely no others. The effective date and/or wording of said tariffs shall comply with the ordering provisions of the order being complied with.
5. Compliance - Any tariff filing filed with the Commission and found to be noncompliant shall be so marked and one copy shall be returned to the filing party with a brief explanation advising in what way the tariff does not comply and advise that the Commission does not consider said tariff as having been filed. Record of any tariff filings returned for noncompliance shall be made in the Commission files.
6. Promotional Offerings - Companies may offer promotions of new or existing services or products for limited periods (not to exceed 180 days) after 7 days notice to the Commission detailing the promotion along with the beginning and ending dates. Telephone utilities may extend the promotion offer for one additional 180 day period after notifying the Commission. Promotional offerings do not have to be filed in the tariff, however, each telephone utility shall have a provision in their tariff authorizing the offering of promotions.
(b) Exchange Maps. Each telephone utility shall have on file with the Commission an exchange area boundary map for each of its exchanges within the State. Each map shall clearly show the boundary lines of the area which the telephone utility holds itself out to serve in connection with the exchange. Exchange boundary lines shall be located by appropriate measurement to an identifiable location where that portion of the boundary line is not otherwise located on section lines, waterways, railroads, roads, etc. Maps shall include location of highways, section lines, geographic township and range lines, railroads and waterways outside municipalities. Maps generally shall contain detail as shown on county highway maps. The map scale and other detail shall be shown as required by the Commission. Data associated with the exchange map shall be immediately available for public information at each business office for the area served by said office. Each telephone utility filing an original or revised map shall submit proof of notice of the proposed boundary to any other telephone utility adjoining the area in which a boundary line is to be established or changed.
(6) Accident Reports. Each utility shall file with the Commission a report of each fatal or disabling accident in connection with the operation of the utility's telephone plant. Prompt verbal notice of fatal accidents followed by a copy of Occupational Safety and Health Administration Report shall be given to the Commission.
(7) Service Reports. Each utility shall furnish to the Commission at such time and in such form as the Commission may require, the results of any tests, summaries or records. The utility shall also furnish the Commission with any information concerning the utility's facilities or operations which may be requested.

Rule 515-12-1-.03 Metering, Inspections and Tests

(1) Competitive Local Exchange Carriers that provide local exchange service through resold telecommunication services, unbundled network elements and/or special access are exempt from the provisions of this rule.
(2) Provisions of Testing. The telephone utility shall provide or have access to test facilties which will enable it to determine the operating and transmission capabilities of circuit and switching equipment, either for routine maintenance or for fault location.
(3) Meter Reading Records. When mechanical and/or electronic recording devices are used in connection with telecommunication service the meter reading data and related customer records from which the customer's bills are prepared shall show:
a. Identifying number or means to determine readily the customer's name, address and service classification.
b. Meter readings.
c. Date of Meter reading.
d. Multiplier or constant if used.
(4) Meter and Recording Equipment Test Facilities. Every telephone meter and/or recording device shall be tested prior to its installation, either by the manufacturer, the telephone utility, or an approved organization equipped for such testing. Such equipment shall be maintained in good operating condition, shall be tested periodically in their normal operating location and wiring and shall be accurately read. Periodic testing and maintenance of controlling trunk equipment shall be performed to assure the integrity of their operation.
(5) Meter and Recording Equipment Requirements. All meters and/or recording devices shall accurately perform the following:
a. For message rate service where timing the length of message is not involved, the meter and/or recording device shall show the number of completed messages sent by the access line which it is measuring.
b. For message rate, measured rate, and/or message toll service when in addition to recording the calls it is necessary to time the calls, the recording device shall show the number of calls and the chargeable time involved in each call and the access line making such call. When a meter and/or recording device is associated with the access line making the call, the meter and/or recording device shall accumulate the number of message units used for these calls.
(6) Request Tests. Upon request of any customer the telephone utility shall make a test of any meter and/or recording device related to his billing. Such requests should not be made more often than once every three months unless unusual circumstances exist.
(7) Test Records. A record of all meter and/or recording equipment tests and adjustments and data sufficient to allow checking of the results shall be recorded. Such record shall include the identifying number of the meter and/or recording device; its type; the date and kind of test; and the results of each test.

Rule 515-12-1-.04 Customer Relations

(1) Rate and Special Charges Information. Upon the request of any customer or applicant, the telephone utility shall provide an explanation of the rates, charges, and provisions applicable to the service furnished or available to such customer or applicant, and shall provide any information and assistance necessary to enable him to obtain the most economical communications service conforming to his stated needs. Applicants for residential telephone service shall be advised as to alternate services available to meet their state communications requirements. This information may include printed explanations of alternate services and rates. Correspondingly, the utility shall notify residential customers of any service connection charge to be applied to their bills prior to undertaking any action and shall provide an estimate of the initial billing for basic monthly service (including fractional monthly amounts) plus any other applicable charges.
(2) The customer shall be provided with an estimate of the charges where special charges not specifically set forth in a utility's tariff are levied on the basis of actual cost for such items as extraordinary construction, maintenance, or replacement costs of expenses, overtime work at the customer's request, and special installations, equipment and assemblies.
(3) Business Offices.
(a) Business offices shall be staffed to provide customers and others with convenient access to qualified personnel, including supervisory personnel where warranted, to provide information relating to services and rates, accept and process applications for service, explain charges on customers' bills, adjust charges made in error and to generally act as representatives of the utility. If one business office serves several communities, toll-free calling from such communities to that office shall be provided.
(b) Qualified personnel shall be instructed to be courteous, considerate, efficient and available to promptly serve those who contact the business office.
(4) Customer Billing.
(a) Bills to customers shall be typed or machine printed, rendered regularly, and shall contain a listing of all charges and the period of time covered by the billing. The local service charges may be shown as a single item even though they include extensions and other items for which a flat monthly charge is made. The telephone company shall provide the customer with a breakdown of local service charges upon request. Statements itemizing message toll charges, if applicable, shall be included in bills to customers, with the exception of coin telephone message toll charges, which will be provided upon customer request.
(b) With the written consent of the customer, a company may provide regular billing in electronic form if the bill meets all requirements of this rule. The company must maintain a record of the customer's request, and the customer may change from electronic to printed billing upon written request.
(c) If a company is delayed in billing a customer, the company must offer arrangements that are equal to the length of time the bill is delayed beyond the regularly scheduled billing interval (e.g., if the bill includes two months delayed charges, the customer must be allowed to pay the charges over two months).
(d) Basic local exchange services may not be denied, interrupted or discontinued for failure of the billed party to pay any portion of the charges billed for non-regulated telecommunications services and/or non-telecommunications services or items. Further, in the case of partial payments of bills rendered, such partial payments shall be applied to amounts owed for basic local exchange services first before being applied to amounts owed for non-regulated and/or non-telecommunications services.
(e) In the event of a dispute between the customer and the utility respecting any bill, the utility may require the customer to pay the disputed portion of the bill to avoid discontinuance of service for non-payment. The utility shall make such investigation as may be appropriate to the particular case, and report the result thereof to the customer. In the event the dispute is not reconciled, the company shall advise the customer that he or she may make application to the Commission for review and disposition of the matter.
(f) In the event the customer's service is interrupted other than by the negligence or willful act of the customer and it remains out of order for more than 24 hours (but not including Saturday and Sunday if part of the first 24 hours) after being reported or found to be out of order, upon request appropriate adjustments shall be made to the customer. In the event the customer's service is disconnected or interrupted for non-payment and it remains disconnected or interrupted for more than 24 hours (but not including Saturday and Sunday if part of the first 24 hours), upon request appropriate adjustments shall be made to the customer.
(5) Public Information. Access to the following information shall be made available at the business office upon request.
(a) Copies of all tariffs as described in Rule 515-12-1-.02 applicable to the area served by the business office.
(b) Maps showing exchange, base rate area and zone (if applicable) boundaries in sufficient size and detail from which all customer locations can be determined and mileage or zone charges quoted.
(c) Publicly announced information as to the present and intended future availability of specific classes of service at an applicant's location.
(d) Publicly announced information concerning plans for major service changes in the area served by the business office.
(e) Information pertaining to service and rates as proposed in pending tariff or rate change filing.
(f) Copies of these telephone service rules.

Rule 515-12-1-.05 Customer Deposits for Communication Services

(1) The Commission declares that it is in the public interest for each utility to fairly and indiscriminately administer a reasonable policy reflected by written regulations, in accord with these Rules, which will permit an applicant for service to establish, or an existing customer to reestablish, credit with the utility for the use of its service. The Commission further declares that when it is necessary for an applicant or customer to make a cash deposit to establish or reestablish credit in accordance with these Rules, the making of such deposit is in the public interest because it avoids, to the extent practicable, the creation of a burden arising from uncollectible bills which would have to be borne ultimately by all the utility's ratepayers. The Commission further declares that the essential igredient in each utility's administration of deposit policy in accord with these Rules is its equitable and indiscriminate application to all applicants for service and customers throughout the service area without regard to the economic character of the area or any part thereof, and such deposit policy shall be predicated upon the credit risk of the individual without regard to the collective credit reputation of the area in which he lives.
(2) Each utility may require an applicant for service to satisfactorily establish credit which will be deemed established if:
(a) The applicant demonstrates that he is a satisfactory credit risk by appropriate means including, but not limited to, the production of substantive references which may be quickly and inexpensively checked by the utility; or
(b) The applicant has been a customer of the utility for a similar type of service within a period of twenty-four consecutive billings preceding the date of application and during the last twelve consecutive billings for that prior service has not had service discontinued for nonpayment of bill or had more than one occasion in which a bill was not paid within the period prescribed by the reasonable regulation of the utility on file with the Commission; provided, that the average periodic bill for such previous service was equal to at least fifty per centum of that estimated for the new service; and provided further, that the credit of the applicant is unimpaired; or
(c) The applicant furnishes a satisfactory guarantor to secure payment of bills for the service requested in a specified amount not to exceed the amount of the cash deposit prescribed in Paragraph (4) of this Rule; or
(d) The applicant makes a cash deposit to secure payment of bills for service prescribed in Paragraph (4) of this Rule.
(3) An applicant for service who previously has been a customer of the utility and whose service has been discontinued by the utility during the last twelve billings of that prior service because of nonpayment of bills, may be required to reestablish credit in accordance with Paragraph (2) of this Rule; except, that an applicant for residential service shall not be denied service for failure to pay such bills for classes of nonresidential service.
(a) A customer who fails to pay a bill within a reasonable period after it becomes due and when further fails to pay such bill within the period prescribed by the reasonable regulations of the utility on file with the Commission after presentation of a discontinuance of service notice for nonpayment of bill (regardless of whether or not service was discontinued or such nonpayment), may be required to pay such bill together with a reasonable reconnection charge, if any, and reestablish his credit by depositing the amount prescribed in Paragraph (4) of this Rule.
(b) A customer may be required to reestablish his credit in accordance with Paragraph (2) of this Rule in case the conditions of service or basis on which credit was originally established have materially changed.
(4) Deposit; Amount; Receipt; Interest. No utility shall require a cash deposit to establish or reestablish credit in an amount in excess of two-and-one-half twelfths of the estimated charge for the service for the ensuing twelve months; and, in the case of seasonal service, in an amount in excess of one-half of the estimated charge for the service for the season involved. Each utility, upon request, shall furnish a copy of Paragraphs (2) through (7) of these Rules to the applicant for service or customer from whom a deposit is required and such copy shall contain the name, address and telephone number of the Commission.
(a) Upon receiving a cash deposit and if requested, the utility shall furnish to the applicant for service or customer, a receipt showing: the date thereof; the name of the applicant or customer and the current billing address; the service to be furnished or presently furnished; and the amount of the deposit and the rate of interest to be paid thereon.
(b) Each utility shall pay interest on a deposit at the rate of 7% per annum (effective April 1, 1980). Interest on a deposit shall accrue annually and, if requested, shall be annually credited to the customer by deducting such interest from the amount of the next bill for service following the accrual date. A utility shall not be required to pay interest on a deposit for the period following ninety days after discontinuance of service, if during such period the utility has made a reasonable effort to refund the deposit. Each utility shall comply with the Georgia Unclaimed Property Act for all unclaimed deposits.
(5) Refund of Deposit.
(a) After discontinuance of service and following rendition of final bill, the utility shall promptly and automatically refund the customer's deposit plus accrued interest, or the balance, if any, in excess of the unpaid bills for service furnished by the utility. A transfer of service from one premises to another within the service area of the utility shall not be deemed a discontinuance within the meaning of these Rules.
(b) After the customer has paid bills for service for twelve consecutive bills without having had service discontinued for nonpayment of bill or had more than one occasion in which a bill was not paid within the period prescribed by the regulations of the utility on file with the Commission, and the customer is not then delinquent in the payment of his bills, the utility shall annually and automatically refund the deposit plus accrued interest. Deposits maturing under this section for refund and falling on other than the company's normal annual refund date will be promptly returned to the customer upon request. If the customer has had service discontinued for nonpayment of his bill or had more than one past-due bill for such period, the utility shall thereafter review the account every twelve billings and shall promptly and automatically refund the deposit plus accured interest after the customer has not had service discontinued for nonpayment of bill or had more than one such past-due bill during the twelve billings prior to any review and is not then delinquent in the payment of his bills.
(c) The utility shall promptly return the deposit plus accured interest at any time upon request, if the customer's credit has been otherwise established in accordance with Paragraph (2) of these Rules.
(d) At the option of the utility, a deposit plus accrued interest may be refunded, in whole or in part, at any time earlier than the times hereinabove prescribed.
(e) The customer who believes he has been refused a deposit refund for insufficient reason or the utility which believes the customer is attempting to violate the intent of these Rules, shall have the right to appeal the case to the Commission for analysis and disposition.
(6) Record of Deposit. Each utility holding a cash deposit shall keep a record thereof until the deposit is refunded. The record shall show: the name and current billing address of each depositor; the amount and date of the deposit; an each transaction concerning the deposit.
(7) Appeal by Applicant or Customer. Each utility shall direct its personnel engaged in initial contact with an applicant for service or customer, seeking to establish or reestablish credit under the provisions of these Rules, to inform him, if he expresses dissatisfaction with the decision of such personnel, of his right to have the problem considered and acted upon by supervisory personnel of the utility. Each utility shall further direct such supervisory personnel to inform such an applicant or customer who expresses dissatisfaction with the decision of such supervisory personnel and requests governmental review, of his right to have the problem reviewed by the Commission and shall furnish him the address and telephone number of the Commission.

Rule 515-12-1-.06 Reasons for Denying Service

Service may be refused or discontinued for any of the reasons listed below. Unless otherwise stated, the customer shall be notified and allowed a reasonable time in which to comply with the rule before service is discontinued:

(a) Without notice in the event of customer use of equipment in such a manner as to adversely affect the utility's service to others.
(b) Without notice in the event of tampering with the equipment furnished and owned by the utility.
(c) For violation of or noncompliance with the Commission's regulations governing service supplied by telecommunication utilities, or for violation of or noncompliance with the utility's rules or tariffs on file with the Commission.
(d) For failure to comply with municipal ordinances or other laws pertaining to telephone service.
(e) For failure of the customer to permit the utility reasonable access to its equipment.
(f) For nonpayment of bill.
(g) Failure to establish credit on request for initial or additional service.

Rule 515-12-1-.07 Insufficient Reasons for Denying Service

The following shall not constitute sufficient cause for refusing, denying or discontinuing service to a present or prospective customer:

(a) Delinquency in payment for service by a previous occupant at the premises to be served, except one who is a close relative or member of the same family of the applicant.
(b) Failure to pay directory advertising charges.
(c) Failure to pay for business service at a different location and a different telephone number shall not constitute sufficient cause for refusal of residence service or vice versa.
(d) The customer who believes he has been refused service for insufficient reason, or the utility which believes the customer is attempting to violate the intent of these Rules, shall have the right to appeal the case to the Commission for analysis and disposition.
(e) Existing residential telephone service to a customer having a satisfactory payment history shall not be disconnected due solely to the indebtedness to the utility of another customer if such indebtedness occurred subsequent to the establishment of the existing service. Application for residential telephone service may be refused, however, to a person residing at the same address with a former customer whose service had been denied previously by the utility.

Rule 515-12-1-.08 Complaints and Appeals

(1) When a utility receives an oral or written complaint from an applicant or customer, whether directly to it or, upon request, by the Commission, regarding its service or regarding another company's service for which it provides billing, collection, or responses to inquiries, the utility must acknowledge the complaint as follows:
(a) Provide the name of the company's contact to the complainant;
(b) Investigate the complaint promptly;
(c) Report the results of the investigation to the complainant;
(d) Take corrective action, if warranted, as soon as appropriate under the circumstances;
(e) Inform the complainant that the decision may be appealed to a supervisor at the company; and
(f) Inform the complainant, if still dissatisfied after speaking to a supervisor, of the right to file a complaint with the Commission and provide the Commission's address, toll-free number and/or Internet web site for filing a complaint online.
(2) The telephone utility shall make a full and prompt investigation of all complaints made by its customers or applicants, for service either directly to the utility or, upon request, by the Commission. Such investigation should commence within five (5) business days from the date of initial contact. If the complaint has not been resolved within thirty (30) days, the telephone utility shall make a status report on the matter to the entity that made the initial complaint. If the contact is made by the Commission and the customer is without service, the customer is to be contacted as soon as possible with a follow up by the Commission within two (2) business days.
(3) When a utility receives a complaint from an applicant or customer regarding another company's service for which it provides only billing service, the utility must provide the complainant a toll- free number to reach the appropriate office for the company that is authorized to investigate and take corrective action to resolve the dispute or complaint.

Rule 515-12-1-.09 Voluntary Suspension

Communications service shall, at the request of a customer, be temporarily suspended. The suspension period shall not be less than one (1) month, nor more than six (6) months in duration, and no more than one suspension shall be granted during any twelve (12) months' period. Each telephone company's tariff shall provide a suspension of service rate chargeable during the period of suspension.

Rule 515-12-1-.10 Directories

(1) On an annual basis, an incumbent local exchange carrier shall publish telephone directories that list the name, address and telephone number of all customers, except public telephones and telephone service unlisted at customer's request. Where customer address and location differ, location should be given.
(2) To the extent directory assistance is provided, the telephone utility shall list its customers with the directory assistance operators to provide the requested telephone numbers based on the customers' names and addresses when such requests are made by communication users. Where customer address and location differ, location should be given.
(3) A local exchange company shall distribute, or arrange to have distributed, printed directories free of charge to requesting customers served by that directory. The local exchange company or any of its affiliates or delegates distributing such directories shall not market services to such requesting customers, and will:
(a) accept electronic files from competing carriers identifying such requesting customers;
(b) accept those telephone calls from competing carriers where the requesting customers are on the line; and
(c) arrange with the carrier and the customers for the provision of directories to the customers. Furthermore, prior to discontinuing the distribution of copies of residential directories to any community, a local exchange company shall execute, or arrange to have executed, reasonable measures to transition affected customers to a system in which they will not receive the residential directory, except upon request. These reasonable measures shall include notification that the directories will be distributed only upon request, that distribution upon request will be free of charge, and the phone number and e-mail address affected customers may use to request a copy of the directories. This notification shall be included in a bill insert or a bill message and on the local exchange company's website.
(4) The name of the telephone utility, an indication of the area included in the directory and the month and year of the issue shall appear on the front cover. Information pertaining to emergency calls such as for the police and fire departments shall appear conspicuously in the front part of the directory pages.
(5) The directory shall contain instructions concerning placing local and long distance calls, calls to repair and directory assistance services, and locations and telephone numbers of telecommunications company business offices as may be appropriate to the area served by the directory.
(6) To the extent directory assistance is provided, directory assistance operators shall have access to records of all telephone numbers (except telephone numbers not listed or published at customer request) in the area for which they are responsible for furnishing directory assistance service.
(7) In the event of an error in the listed number of any customer, the incumbent local exchange carrier shall intercept all calls to the listed number for a reasonable period of time provided existing central office equipment will permit and the number is not in service. In the event of an error or omission in the name listing of a customer, such customer's correct name and telephone number shall be in the files of the directory assistance or intercept operators and the correct number furnished the calling party either upon request or interception.
(8) Whenever any customer's telephone number is changed after a directory is published, the incumbent local exchange carrier shall intercept all calls to the former number for a reasonable period of time, and give the calling party the new number provided existing central office equipment will permit, and the customer so desires.
(9) When additions or changes in plant or changes to any other utility operations necessitate changing telephone numbers to a group of customers, reasonable notice shall be given to all customers so affected even though the addition or changes may be coincident with a directory issue.

Rule 515-12-1-.11 Engineering

(1) Construction. The telecommunications plant shall be designed, constructed, maintained and operated in accordance with the provisions as outlined in the current National Electrical Safety Code or such other appropriate regulation as may be prescribed.
(2) Interexchange Trunks. Interexchange trunks or toll circuits shall be, at a minimum, full metallic or equivalent. Fiber trunks are construed as superior to metallic trunks.
(3) Switching Service. In order to provide and maintain the best possible service for all telephone customers, the telephone utility shall not be required to provide exchange or message toll switching services to lines that introduce energy into the network at levels of frequencies that will interfere with other users.
(4) Emergency Operation.
(a) Telephone utilities shall make reasonable provisons to meet emergencies resulting from failures of lighting or power services, unusual and prolonged increases in traffic, illness of personnel, or from fire, storm, or other acts of God and inform its employees as to procedures to be followed in the event of emergency in order to prevent or minimize interruption or impairment of telecommunication service.
(b) Each central office shall contain as a minimum three hours of battery reserve. It is also essential that all central offices have adequate provision for emergency power. In offices without installed emergency power facilities, there shall be a mobile power unit available which can be delivered and connected in less than the battery reserve time.
(c) In exchanges exceeding 5,000 lines, a dedicated auxiliary power unit shall be installed and shall be capable of being connected and operating in less than the battery reserve time.

Rule 515-12-1-.12 Construction Work Near Utility Facilities

(1) Competitive Local Exchange Carriers that provide local exchange service through resold telecommunication services, unbundled network elements and/or special access are exempt from the provisions of this rule.
(2) Upon receipt of written or verbal notification from the property owner, or from a contractor, of work which may affect its facilities used for serving the public telephone utility shall investigate and decide what action, if any, must reasonably be taken to protect or alter telephone facilities in order to protect service to the public and to avoid unnecessary damage, such as identifying in a suitable manner the location of any underground facilities which may be affected by the work.
(3) The telephone utility may, in order to protect its interest, require that the property owner or contractor perform certain work upon that part of the service piping or wiring on, or being removed from, the property on which the work is being performed. This subsection is not intended to affect the responsibility of the contractor or owner, or the liability or legal rights of any party.
(4) When performing any work that endangers other companies' buried utility facilities, telecommunications utilities shall fully comply with the provisions of the Georgia Utility Facility Protection Act (O.C.G.A. § 25-9-1et seq.)
(5) The telephone utility shall provide a listing of each of its directories advising the public and contractors of an appropriate office to call for guidance and directions for performing excavations, etc., near telephone facilities.

Rule 515-12-1-.13 Maintenance of Plant and Equipment

(1) Competitive Local Exchange Carriers that provide local exchange service through resold telecommunication services, unbundled network elements and/or special access are exempt from the provisions of this rule.
(2) Each telephone utility shall adopt and pursue a maintenance program aimed at achieving efficient operation of its system so as to permit the rendering of safe, adequate and continuous service at all times.
(3) Mainenance shall include keeping all plants and equipment in good state of repair consistent with safety and and the adequate service performance of the plant affected, such as:
(a) Broken, damaged or deteriorated parts which are no longer serviceable shall be repaired or replaced.
(b) Adjustable apparatus and equipment shall be readjusted as necessary when found to be in unsatisfactory operating condition.
(c) Electric faults, such as leakage or poor insulation, noise induction, crosstalk or poor transmission characteristics shall be corrected to the extent practicable.
(4) Whenever service must be interrupted for the purpose of working on transmission facilities or their supporting apparatus or switching location equipment, such work shall be done at a time which will cause the least inconvenience to subscribers, and those who will be most seriously affected by such interruption shall, insofar as feasible, be adequately notified in advance. The telephone utility shall also notify the appropriate 9-1-1 answering center of any planned service interruption that will affect, for one (1) hour or more, two hundred (200) or more access lines served by that 9-1-1- answering point.

Rule 515-12-1-.14 Repealed

Rule 515-12-1-.15 Inspections and Tests

(1) Each utility shall adopt a program of periodic tests, inspections and preventive maintenance aimed at achieving efficient operation of its system and the rendition of safe, adequate and continuous service.
(2) Each utility shall maintain or have access to test facilities enabling it to determine the operating and transmission capabilities of all equipment and facilities, both for routine maintenance and for trouble location. The actual transmission performance of the network shall be monitored in order to determine if the established objectives and operating requirements are met. This monitoring function consists of circuit order tests prior to placing trunks in service, routine periodic trunk maintenance tests, tests of actual switched trunk connections, periodic noise tests of sample of customer loops in each exchange, and special transmission surveys of the network.

Rule 515-12-1-.16 Service Interruptions

In the event that service must be interrupted for purposes of working on the lines or equipment, the work shall be done at a time which will cause minimal inconvenience to customers. Each utility shall attempt to notify each affected customer in advance of the interruption. Emergency service shall be available, as required, for the duration of the interruption.

Rule 515-12-1-.17 Quality of Service - General

(1) Each telephone utility shall provide telecommunication service to the public in its service area in accordance with its tariffs on file with the Commission.
(2) The telephone utility shall employ prudent management and engineering practices, including the employment of reliable procedures for forecasting future demand for service, conduct studies and maintain records to the end that reasonable margins of facilities and adequate personnel are available with objective that service will meet the quality described herein.
(3) Each utility shall make traffic studies and maintain records as required to determine that sufficient equipment and an adequate operating force are provided at all times including the average busy hour, busy season.
(4) In each exchange where police protection is present the utility shall provide at least one coin telephone available to the public at all hours, prominently located and properly maintained, equipped with dialing instructions, and lighted at night. A reasonable attempt shall be made to equip each coin telephone with a directory.
(5) The telephone company shall adhere to the standards as prescribed by the Commission, but the normal operating procedures and practices, as presented by the Commission and directed by the utility, are not intended to govern the implementation or execution of such procedures and practices in individual instances. The execution or non-execution of such procedures and practices in individual instances is not indicative of whether the utility has provided adequate service to a particular subscriber or group of subscribers.

Rule 515-12-1-.18 Service Objectives

(1) Competitive Local Exchange Carriers that provide local exchange service through resold telecommunication services, unbundled network elements and/or special access are exempt from the provisions of this rule.
(2) This rule establishes service objectives which should generally be provided by a utility. Each utility shall make measurements to determine the level of service for each item included. Each utility shall provide the Commission or its staff with the measurements and summaries thereof for any of the items included on request of the Commission or its staff.


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Rule 515-12-1-.19 Repealed

Rule 515-12-1-.20 Repealed

Rule 515-12-1-.21 Repealed

Rule 515-12-1-.22 Repealed

Rule 515-12-1-.23 Customer Trouble Reports

(1) Competitive Local Exchange Carriers that provide local exchange service through resold telecommunication services, unbundled network elements and/or special access are exempt from the provisions of this rule.
(2) Each utility shall provide for the receipt of customer trouble reports at all hours and make a full and prompt investigation of all complaints. The utility shall maintain an accurate record of trouble reports made by its customers. This record shall include appropriate identification of the customer or service affected; the time, date and nature of the report; the action taken to clear trouble or satisfy the complaint; and the date and time of trouble clearance or other disposition.
(3) Each utility shall file with the Commission a trouble report summary or a quarterly basis which shall be filed on or before the end of the month following the reporting period. This report shall include 1. The name of each exchange; 2. The number of exchange lines for each exchange; 3. The number of troubles filed that month for each exchange; 4. The Trouble Index (number of reported troubles per 100 lines) for each exchange; and 5. A detailed explanation if the Trouble Index is above the allowable 4% maximum.
(4) Provisions shall be made to clear troubles of an emergency nature at all hours, consistent with the needs of customers and the personal safety of utility personnel.
(5) Provisions shall be made to normally clear all out-of-service trouble not requiring unusual repair, such as cable failure, within 24 hours (Sundays excepted) of the report received by the utility unless the customer agrees to another arrangement.
(6) All commitments to customers shall be kept, unless customers are timely notified of unavoidable changes. If unusual repairs are required, or other factors preclude clearing of reported trouble promptly, reasonable efforts shall be made to notify affected customers.
(7) Service shall be maintained in such a manner that trouble reports by central office do not exceed four trouble reports per one hundred access lines per month for two consecutive months, or per month for four months in any one twelve-month period. This standard does not apply to trouble reports related to customer premise equipment, inside wiring, force majeure, or outages of service caused by persons or entities other than the telephone utility.
(8) Transmission Requirements. Telephone utilities shall furnish and maintain adequate plant, equipment and facilities to provide satisfactory transmission of communications between customers in their service areas. Transmission shall be at adequate volume levels and free of excessive distortion. Levels of noise and cross-talk shall be such as not to impair communications.

Rule 515-12-1-.24 Safety

Each utility shall adopt and execute a safety program fitted to the size and type of its operations and shall:

(a) Require the employees to use suitable tools and equipment so that they perform their work in a safe manner.
(b) Instruct employees in safe work practices.
(c) Each utility shall exercise reasonable care to minimize the hazards to which its employees, customers and the general public may be subjected.

Rule 515-12-1-.25 Application of Rules

These telephone service rules promulgated herein shall apply to any telephone utility operating within the State of Georgia, under the jurisdiction of the Georgia Public Service Commission.

Rule 515-12-1-.26 Rules Govern All Telephone Utilities Subject to Commission Jurisdiction

These rules govern the furnishing of communication service and facilities to the public telephone utilities subject to the jurisdiction of the Commission. The purpose of these rules is to establish reasonable service standards to the end that adequate and satisfactory service will be rendered to the public.

Rule 515-12-1-.27 Variation of Rules Not Permitted Under Law

These rules shall in no way relieve any utility from any of its duties under the laws of this State or from any other rules or directives of this Commission.

Rule 515-12-1-.28 Telephone Service Disconnection

In the event of a proposed disconnection of residential basic local service only, the following procedures shall apply:

(a) No basic residential service shall be disconnected for local service charge until at least 29 days from the date of the bill.
(b) No residential service can be disconnected for local service charges unless the utility has given the affected customer a written notice of the proposed disconnection at least five (5) days before the proposed date of disconnection. The notice must include:
1. The final payment date of the amount due;
2. The reason for the disconnection, including the unpaid balance due;
3. A telephone number which the customer may call for information about the proposed disconnection; and
4. The procedure for medical emergencies, as hereinafter described.
(c) If contact with the customer was not previously made and notice of the disconnection was by mail or by leaving it at the premises, the utility must make a good faith effort to contact the customer at least two (2) days before the proposed disconnection.
(d) Service shall not be disconnected for nonpayment of local service charges to a residential customer who has a serious illness which would be aggravated by said discontinuation, provided that the customer notifies the utility of this condition in writing, or orally and within ten (10) days of giving such initial notice furnishes to the utility a written statement from a physician, county board of health, hospital, or clinic identifying the illness and its expected duration, and certifying that the illness would be aggravated by such discontinuance. In such event, the proposed disconnection shall be held in abeyance for the shorter of either the length of the illness or one month from the date of such initial notice, and the customer may renew the postponement period one additional time by repeating the aforementioned procedure. If there is a dispute regarding the existence of a serious illness, the case may be referred to the Commission for final determination.
(e) In the case of a disputed bill for basic local exchange residential service, the customer shall have the right, after all remedial measures with the utility have failed, to request in writing, or orally to be followed by a request in writing, that the Commission investigate the dispute before residential service may be disconnected. Such request must be made within ten (10) days after the date of the disputed bill.
(f) No consumer may be disconnected for unpaid residential local service if the consumer notifies the telephone company between the date of receiving a notification of the proposed disconnection of service and the date set for disconnection and agrees to pay the unpaid balance for service previously provided in equal installments over the three consecutive billing months immediately following said notice. Further, the consumer agrees to pay future bills and the installments by the date due. However, if a consumer has received a notice of intent to disconnect, at any time prior to the time when the consumer is once again current in his billings for service previously provided, if the consumer makes toll calls exceeding $10.00 in any thirty (30) day period, the telephone company shall have the right to immediately and without further notice, disconnect telephone service to that consumer. Similarly, if the consumer fails to make any agreed upon payment as set forth immediately above, the company may disconnect service without further notice.

Rule 515-12-1-.29 Extended Area Service

(1) PURPOSE. The Commission declares that it is in the public interest to establish uniform guidelines, standards and procedures for filing, acceptance and processing of petitions or requests for Extended Area Service (EAS) which may be pending on, or applied for or made subsequent to the effective date of this rule.
(2) DEFINITIONS. For purposes of construction and interpretation of this Rule, the following are defined as indicated:
(a) CCS (Hundred Calling Seconds): A measure of telephone traffic load obtained by multiplying the number of calls in an hour by the average call duration in seconds and dividing that product by one hundred;
(b) EAS (Extended Area Service): A switching and trunking arrangement which provides for non-optional, unlimited two way, flat rate calling service between two or more exchanges, provided at a local exchange rate to be set by the Georgia Public service commission (GPSC; hereinafter "GPSC" or "The Commission");
(c) Exchange Regrouping: A method of automatically moving an exchange into another rate group (based on the number of access lines available for local calling) if the number of access lines is increased so that the exchange no longer fits in the original rate group;
(d) Holding Time: The total duration, in time, of one completed call;
(e) Incremental Rate: That rate, if any, which may be added to each subscriber of an exchange to offset any increased revenue requirement which may be found by the Commission to be due to EAS provision; any such rate increase shall be apportioned between classes of customers in such a manner as the Commission may in the exercise of its sound discretion, direct and apportioned among the various exchanges included in the newly expanded toll free area in such a manner as the Commission may, in the exercise of its sound discretion, direct;
(f) Access Line: A communications facility extending from a customer's premises to a serving central office comprising a subscriber line and, if necessary, a trunk facility, e.g., a WATS access line, TWX access line;
(g) Stimulation Factor: A measure of the increase in telephone messages between two exchanges when they are connected by EAS instead of message toll service ("long distance").
(3) GUIDELINES FOR COMMISSION APPROVAL. The following guidelines shall be applied by the Commission, in considering and reaching a decision in connection with any proposal for EAS:
(a) Whether, in the exercise of its sound discretion, the Commission determined that the community of interest factor between the affected exchanges is sufficient to warrant the application of EAS to the affected exchanges, i.e., that it is in the best interest of the affected exchanges that EAS be granted;
(b) Whether the incremental rates to be charged for the EAS arrangement, as determined by the Commission, will, in the EAS area as a whole, generate revenue within the affected exchanges (i.e., all exchanges in the newly expanded toll free area) sufficient to meet any increased revenue requirements found by the Commission to result from the provision of EAS, taking into account the overall financial situation of the affected telephone companies;
(c) Whether the proposed EAS is found by the Commission, in the exercise of its sound discretion, to be of sound political, and/or social and/or economic or other value to the communities affected and that benefits to be realized justify and/or outweigh any additional costs incurred.
(4) FILING REQUIREMENTS. The Commission may, on its own motion, initiate an inquiry into an EAS proposal, may set forth its own proposal and may otherwise initiate the procedures for EAS described herein. In addition, the Commission may initiate such an inquiry and trigger such procedures in response to any of the following:
(a) A petition signed by at least ten percent (10%) of the subscribers in the telephone exchange from which the petition originates. Any such petition filed with the Commission shall set forth the name and telephone number of each petition signer; or
(b) A petition, request or resolution adopted and filed with the Commission by any elected representative or governing body of a political subdivision which is served, in whole or in part, by any exchange(s) requested in any such petition request or resolution, to be considered for EAS; or
(c) A petition file by one or more telephone companies who have jurisdiction over at least one exchange sought to be included in EAS; or
(d) A petition, request or resolution filed by any regional, county, city or other Chamber of Commerce or Development Authority representing at least one of the exchanges sought to be afforded EAS;
(e) All petitions for EAS, regardless of how initiated, shall state the name of the petitioner's exchange(s) and the name(s) of the exchange(s) to which EAS is sought.
(5) TRAFFIC STUDY.
(a) Upon receipt of a proper filing under the provisions given in (4) above, or on its own motion, the Commission shall cause a traffic study to be conducted. Results of this traffic study shall be reported to the Commission in such time frame as the Commission may direct, but in no event less than 30 nor more than 90 days from the date of the Commission's transmittal of an Order to the affected telephone companies directing that the study be undertaken. The data filed shall be developed from and based upon a minimum thirty (30) day study of representative calling patterns, shall be in such form, detail and content as the Commission may reasonably require and shall include, as a minimum, the following information, unless specifically waived by the Commission:
1. The number of messages and calculated calling rates, expressed in messages per access line per month, over each interexchange route and in each direction, segregated between business and residential users and combined for both; and
2. A detailed analysis of the distribution of calling usage among subscribers, over each route and in each direction, segregated between business and residential users and combined, showing, for each category, the number of customers making 0 calls, 1 call, etc., through 15 calls and 16 or more calls per month;
3. Data showing, by classes of service, the number of access lines in service for each of the exchanges being studied;
4. The interexchange toll rates, distance between rate centers, the number and duration of calls and the average revenue per message (ARPM) for the calls studied;
5. The number of foreign Exchange (FX) lines in service and the average calling volumes carried on these lines expressed (a) as calculated messages per month and (b) in CCS units.
(b) As a guideline for evaluating community of interest, the Commission may consider that such a community of interest exists when the combined two way calling rate over each interexchange route under consideration equals or exceeds, on the average, four (4) messages per access line per month or at least fifty percent (50%) of the subscribers in the exchanges affected make at least three (3) calls per month, except that:
1. On any given route between two exchanges, when the exchange of the petitioning subscribers has less than one half the number of access lines as the larger exchange, studies of one-way traffic originating in the smaller exchange may be used, in which case the community of interest guidelines will be met if a calling rate of four (4) or more messages on the average per access lines per month from the smaller exchange to the larger exchange or exchanges to which it seeks inclusion or at least fifty percent (50%) of the exchange subscribers in the smaller exchange make three or more calls per month to the larger exchange or exchanges to which it seeks inclusion.
(c) In the event that the interexchange traffic patterns over the given route do not meet, in the sound discretion of the Commission, community of interest qualifications, the Commission may, in the exercise of its sound discretion, determine that no further investigation would be warranted and may deny the petition.
(6) COST STUDY.
(a) Concurrently with, or following the procedures contained in (4) and (5) above, as the Commission may Order or Direct, the company or companies involved may be ordered by the Commission to initiate studies necessary to determine the changes in costs which may reasonably be expected to result from the establishment of the requested EAS. Such studies shall, however, be ordered and the results of such studies shall be considered by the Commission prior to granting EAS. These studies will consider and develop, for each route, relevant revenues and costs over a one year period immediately following the potential date forinitiation of the service and for a one year period five years subsequent to the potential initiation of the service, including the following information:
1. Net increases in capital costs resulting from required additions to network capacity less reductions in required quantities of facilities and equipment utilized for toll services between the exchanges. The added investment will be based upon the additional switching and trunking needs necessary to accommodate the incremental usage at prescribed levels of service, as may be determined from estimates of call stimulation factors and holding time effects due to Extended Area Service. Annual charge factors will be applied to the added investment to obtain the additional annual costs attributable to this source;
2. Analysis of increases and decreases in expenses and the net effect on operating expenses;
3. A separate schedule showing local revenue increases resulting from exchange regrouping, as applicable;
4. Analysis by exchange of changes in:
(i) Intrastate Intralata toll revenues;
(ii) Intrastate Intralata access charges;
(iii) Intrastate Intralata access revenues.
(b) On or before a date specified by the Commission in its Directive or Order, which shall be no less than 30 nor more than 90 days from the date of transmittal of the Commission's Directive or Order to complete a cost study, the telephone company or companies shall file with the Commission a summary of the results of this study, together with supporting schedules and such detail as will be sufficient to permit the identification of study components and verification of study results. Coincident with the filing of cost study results, respondent(s) shall submit recommendations for proposed incremental rate increases, by classes of service, necessary to support the added service.
(7) DIVISION OF COSTS
(a) Having established the annual average incremental revenue requirement created by the new EAS, the Commission will determine the rate increment to be charged to subscribers in the affected exchange(s), i.e., those exchanges constituting a new or enlarged toll free area including both those which may have been part of a preexisting toll free area and those that may have been added or moved from one toll free area to another. The Commission may, in the exercise of its sound discretion and based upon the evidence before it, order costs to be shared by exchanges not included in the enlarged toll free area.
(b) New Extended Area service will be priced using those rate increments designed to recover the added revenue requirement for each interexchange route and the total increment chargeable to subscribers will be the sum of the increments from all new Extended Area Service routes established for that exchange after the effective date of this rule.
(c) the annual average incremental revenue requirement for each new EAS route shall be apportioned among the various exchanges involved (i.e., both those exchanges which might be added to an existing toll free area as well as those exchanges which might previously have been included in an existing toll free area) as the Commission in the exercise of its sound discretion may determine to be most equitable and fair to all subscribers. The following are guidelines only and are not intended to prescribe or mandate criteria to be applied by the Commission in reaching its determination, but each shall be considered by the Commission and accorded such weight as the Commission may, in light of all the evidence before it and in the exercise of its sound discretion determine to be appropriate:
1. If the exchanges are approximately the same size and two way community of interest is approximately the same, then division of costs should be approximately equal for each subscriber in each exchange.
2. If the petitioning exchange has less than half the number of access lines as the larger exchange and two way community of interest is approximately the same or the one way community of interest of one exchange is less than 10 times that of the other exchange, then the Commission may provide that each exchange's subscribers would bear costs attributable to that exchange.
3. If the community of interest in one direction is ten times (or more than ten times) that of the other direction, the Commission may provide that total costs be divided among the subscribers of the exchange with the higher community of interest.
4. In the event that this division of costs indicates that the increment would be more than the Commission determines to be just and reasonable, the Commission may, in the exercise of its sound discretion, allocate costs in some other fashion or may determine that no further investigation would be warranted and could, in the exercise of its sound discretion, deny the petition.
5. The Commission, in the exercise of its sound discretion, may prescribe such rate mechanism, including but not limited to apportionment among classes of rate payers, as the Commission may determine to be fair, equitable and necessary to recover, from appropriate rate categories, such costs of EAS as the Commission may find to be legitimate.
6. In determining whether any rate increase is warranted, the Commission will first make a determination as to what the true costs of EAS are, giving due consideration to that information required by Section (6) above. Once that determination has been made, and prior to allocation to classes, the Commission shall conduct such review as, in the exercise of its sound discretion, may be prudent and necessary to determine whether any rate increase is justified and if so the amount of any such increase, as well as how any such increase should be allocated among classes. Such review may, but is not required to, include consideration of the overall earnings and other financial circumstances of the company or companies involved.
(8) JOINT INFORMAL MEETING.
(a) An informal meeting between the petition spokesman, telephone company or companies and Commission staff may be held at any time to present and discuss the traffic studies, cost studies and division of costs, so long as all parties are advised of any such meeting and afforded a full and fair opportunity to attend and participate.
(9) PUBLIC HEARING.
(a) At any time, on the Commission's own motion, upon request by either petitioners or telephone companies affected, or at the request of any citizen, Public Hearings maybe held to provide for public comment, for the taking of evidence, for the examination and verification ofdata required by the Commission pursuant to this Rule, the introduction of such additional testimony, evidence and information as may be germane to the issues and to afford an opportunity for all parties of interest to be fully heard or for all of these purposes or others as may be determined by the Commission. Any such hearings may include, but are not necessarily limited to, the following:
1. Presentation of traffic study results;
2. Presentation of cost study results;
3. Presentation of division of costs;
4. Public testimony;
5. Rebuttal testimony on cost study, division of costs or any other matters presented;
6. Any other testimony or other documentary or other evidence deemed by the Commission to be relevant and germane.
(b) At least one hearing including, but not limited to, elements (a)1. through 6. above shall be held by the Commission prior to granting EAS and all relevant and material evidence introduced at any such hearing shall be considered by the Commission prior to granting EAS.
(c) in the event the Commission, in the exercise of its sound discretion, shall determine that the hearing record indicates the petition not to be in the public interest, the Commission may determine that no further investigation is warranted and may deny the petition.
(d) The Commission may, in response to petitions from petitioners, from telephone companies, from others or on its own motion, hold such other Public Hearings at such times and in such places as it may determine to be appropriate, requiring or allowing such testimony or the introduction of such evidence as may be consistent with a sound determination of the public's wishes and concerns and with gathering evidence to enable the Commission to reach a sound decision.
(10) SUBSCRIBER SURVEY.
(a) In all cases where a proposal for Extended Area Service has been initiated, the Commission may, at any time after initiation of any such proposal, order a survey by mail to be made under its supervision of all subscribers so affected.
(b) The customer survey explanatory letter shall include all pertinent information that would enable the customer to exercise a rational choice of acceptance or rejection of the proposal and shall contain at least the following items, along with such other items as the Commission may order or direct:
1. A brief explanation of the purpose of the survey;
2. A tabulation showing, by classes of service, the increases in rates to which subscribers would or might be subject. This letter shall state separately for each exchange required to be surveyed the amount of local service rate increase applicable to that exchange both in the event all exchanges under consideration vote for and are granted EAS or only the petitioning exchange;
3. A listing of the telephone exchanges and three-digit telephone number prefixes which would become accessible if the Extended Area Service were approved, as well as the number of access lines currently available to subscribers and the number of access lines which would be available if EAS were approved, along with current comparable telephone rates in the exchange (so that a comparison could be made with any rate resulting from an increase);
4. A statement indicating that only those voting by a signed return postcard will be counted;
5. The date by which the postcard ballots must be postmarked to be considered. This return date will provide, as a minimum, a period of thirty days from the date on which the survey letter is mailed, unless such time period is shortened by the Commission; provided, however, that, in no event shall the return date be less than ten days from the date of mailing to the customer.
(c) The customer survey letter shall be a separate mailing, shall contain no additional material or information not contemplated by this rule or directed and approved by the Commission and shall include a pre-addressed, return postage paid card ballot which shall provide at least the following information:
1. A brief statement of the service proposal being voted on as more fully described in the customer survey letter;
2. Spaces for the customer to indicate his or her preference for or against the proposal;
3. Lines for signature, telephone number and date;
4. A space for customer comments, if desired;
5. The date by which the ballot must be postmarked in order to be considered in the determination of voting results.
(d) Both the subscriber survey letter and the return postcard ballot as well as the envelope (and any graphic or printed material contained thereon) shall have the prior approval of the Commission before mailing and the postcard ballot shall be returnable to the commission for tabulation of results.
(e) The Commission shall approve an independent company or organization to tabulate said ballots and report the results to the Commission. All costs incurred in connection with preparation of all materials, costs of mailing and costs of collection and tabulation shall be borne by the telephone company or companies involved and such costs shall be only those costs found by the Commission to have been reasonable and prudent and necessary.
(f) The requested EAS may be denied by the Commission upon a finding that:
1. A simple majority of affirmative votes of those voting was not realized, in the aggregate, from the total votes cast in all exchanges in the subscriber survey; or
2. A simple majority of affirmative votes of those casting ballots was not realized from a given petitioning exchange (denial in this instance would be warranted only as to that exchange).
(11) ALTERNATIVES TO EXTENDED AREA SERVICE.
(a) Whenever interexchange traffic patterns are such that subscriber needs may be adequately served by alternative service offerings, or petitions may not fully meet the requirements of this rule but higher than average interexchange message traffic exists, the Commission will give consideration to other alternatives including, but not necessarily limited to, the following:
(a) Optional EAS/Extended Community Calling. Features include:
1. Optional;
2. One way to selected exchanges;
3. Flat rate for a block of time measured rate for overtime.
(b) Circle Calling Plan. Features include:
1. Optional;
2. One Way to selected circles, i.e. bands;
3. Flat rate per band and discounted toll rate for usage.
(c) Measured Rate Service. Features include:
1. Primarily optional;
2. Charges based upon frequency, length, distance and time of day;
3. Subscriber control of bill by control of usage.
(12) CONSIDERATION OF DATA AND EVIDENCE BY COMMISSION.
(a) The Commission in reaching its decision may consider any or all of the data described and collected herein as well as any other data which the Commission may order or direct to be collected, produced or analyzed and any other evidence, testimony or data which the Commission may choose to consider based upon its implicit finding of relevance so long as such data is available to all parties and that all parties have a full and fair opportunity in an open hearing to cross examine any such testimony, to present evidence to rebut any other evidence presented or considered, or otherwise have been afforded all due process rights to which they may be entitled.

Rule 515-12-1-.30 Institutional Telecommunication Services

(1) Definitions:
(a) "Institution" is any type of confinement or correction facility, such as a prison, jail, work farm or detention center.
(b) "Institutional Telecommunication Services" are telephone services provided at an institution for use by inmates in making collect only or debit system calls.
(c) "Customer" is the billed party that agrees to accept and pay for institutional telecommunication services.
(d) "Positive Response" is a pulse or tone generated response and/ or verbal response initiated by the customer to accept responsibility for payment of institutional telecommunication services. No other method may be used in confirming a call (i.e., time outs that automatically complete the call if nothing is done or wrong number(s) are entered or the inability of called party instrument (telephone) and so on).
(2) All institutional service providers must obtain a certificate of authority from the Commission in order to lawfully provide Institutional Telecommunication Services. Holders of Regular Certificates of Authority for the provision of Institutional Telecommunication Services, as of the date of adoption of these rules, shall be exempt from filing an application to provide institutional telecommunication services but are not exempt from filing tariffs for the provision of Institutional Telecommunication Services.
(3) Each institutional service provider shall separately file a list of those institutions with which it has contracted to provide service. Such information may be filed under the Trade Secret provisions of this Commission.
(4) The institutional service provider's list of institutions at which it is providing service shall be updated annually with such update being due on or before January 31 of each year. Such information may be filed under the Trade Secret provisions of this Commission.
(5) All institutional service providers must file tariffs with the Commission which set forth the services provided and the charges for those services.
(6) The surcharge and rate charged the customer for any local (intraLATA/interLATA) collect call shall not exceed the currently effective caps ordered by the Commission for this type of call.
(7) The surcharge and per minute rate charged the customer for any intraLATA toll collect call shall not exceed the currently effective caps ordered by the Commission for this type of call.
(8) The surcharge and per minute rate charged the customer for any interLATA toll collect call shall not exceed the currently effective caps ordered by the Commission for this type of call.
(9) Charges by institutional service providers shall not exceed the tariffed rate. Any institutional service provider that wishes to increase its charge for institutional telecommunication service must file a petition with the Commission along with cost justification for the increase. The Commission must approve the new rate prior to its implementation.
(10) For any rate change, providers of institutional telecommunication services must provide price quotes up front to call recipients on every call for at least thirty days, without requiring the call recipient to respond to a prompt. The price quote shall include at minimum, the price of the first minute and the price of every additional minute of the call. The general prison population must be given notice of any rate change(s). Excepted from the requirement that institutional telecommunication service providers provide up front price quotes to call recipients on every call, is currently deployed institutional telecommunication service equipment in county jail facilities for the duration of the current existing institutional telecommunication service contracts (contracts in existence as of the date of adoption of this rule). Nothing contained in this exception shall relieve institutional telecommunication service providers of providing notice of rates to facilities and the inmates. Providers of institutional telecommunication service to county jail facilities shall also be required to provide toll free rates to call recipients.
(11) Each institutional service provider's operator, live and/or mechanical, shall clearly state the name of the company at the initiation of any encounter with a customer so that the customer is fully informed as to which carrier will be handling his or her call before the customer incurs any charge. Each service provider's operator shall also clearly state the company name at the conclusion of its contact with the customer.
(12) Each institutional service provider must provide a push or voice prompt that fully discloses the rate to be charged for the call, including surcharges, prior to the customer accepting a call and incurring any expense. Excepted from the requirement that institutional telecommunication service providers provide a push or voice prompt that fully discloses the rate to be charged for the call is currently, deployed institutional telecommunication service equipment in county jail facilities for the duration of the currently existing institutional telecommunication service contracts (contracts in existence as of the date of adoption of this rule). Nothing contained in this exception shall relieve institutional telecommunication service providers from providing the notice of rates to facilities and the inmates. Providers of institutional telecommunication service to county jail facilities shall also be required to provide toll free rate quotes to call recipients.
(13) The instrument (telephone) must:
(a) Provide outward-only calling (be it at the location itself or through the central office serving that location).
(b) Where call termination is deemed appropriate by the administration of the institution, limit call duration to a 15 minute interval, unless another time interval is specially requested by the administration of the institution (the service provider must file with the Commission the institution's request within 30 days of any changes).
(c) Be installed in compliance with all accepted telecommunications industry standards and the current National Electric Code and the National Electric Safety Code.
(14) The institutional service provider must block or arrange to have blocked calls to local Directory Assistance (411), long distance Directory Assistance (555-1212), toll free numbers (1-800), 700, 900, 911, 950, 10XXX and any other numbers the Institution and/or the Commission finds may jeopardize the integrity and security of the institution and the safety of the public.
(15) The institutional service provider, must provide 0+ collect only or debit system calls for local, intraLATA toll, and interLATA toll calls and must block access to all other types or forms of calls.
(16) The institutional service provider must insure that a positive response from the called party indicating a willingness to pay for the call is received before completing the call. In the event the institutional service provider does not receive a positive response within fifteen (15) seconds from the last message given, the call must be terminated or defaulted to a live operator.
(17) Institutional Service Providers must adhere to the same rules and regulations that govern billing authority as approved by this Commission for Resellers, IXCs and AOS companies, meaning that the Institutional Provider must be identified on the bill submitted to the customer (call party) by the certified local exchange company. In the event it is impractical or impossible for the applicable certified local exchange company to comply with this Rule, the Institutional Service Provider may apply to the Commission for a waiver of this Rule, which shall be reviewed on a case by case basis.
(18) All providers of Institutional Telecommunication Services shall provide, for distribution by the correctional facility administrator, either (1) upon request by the correctional facility administrator; or (2) once per year; and (3) provided only upon the receipt of a reasonable fee to cover the costs of processing, gathering, and copying the information; printed material containing notice that certain security features inherent to the institutional telecommunications system may result in the disconnection of calls. Such notification must contain, at a minimum, that the following could cause calls to disconnect: use of 3-way calling; use of call transfer; calls put on hold; answering of call waiting; use of cellular phones; use of cordless phones; depressing of any extra numbers on the keypad; extended periods of silence. A sufficient quantity of printed material shall be provided to each correctional facility in order that a copy may be furnished to every inmate at the time of his or her incarceration. Further, additional copies of this printed material shall be provided to each correctional facility administrator, under whose direction and control notification of the technical limitations referenced in the printed material shall be placed in conspicuous locations within the facility and posted in areas accessible to the public, such as day rooms. It is further required that all institutional telecommunication service providers include in this printed material a statement that the correctional facility administrator may place time limits on all telephone calls.
(19) Institutional Service Providers may provision Institutional Telecommunications Service through the use of access lines, broadband, Voice over Internet Protocol, or any other technically feasible means, provided that the service must comply with the rates, terms and conditions set forth in applicable Commission orders.
(20) The rates and conditions for Public Telephone Access Lines for Institutions will be as approved by this Commission for each certified local exchange service company and will be reflected in each company's tariff.
(21) Any Institutional Service Provider that sells packages of minutes must provide adequate notice to the customer that the customer is entitled to a refund for any minutes that are not used at the time the account is closed. In a situation in which the customer has paid for minutes in advance, a refund for any unused minutes shall be issued to the customer within 60 days of the account being closed. Any certificated provider of Institutional Telecommunications Service that sells a package of minutes to an institution remains responsible for ensuring that refunds are issued to customers in accordance with the terms of this rule.

Rule 515-12-1-.31 Payphone Service Providers (PSPs)

(1) Registration:
(a) PSPs telephones must be connected to the network of a Company certified by the Georgia Public Service Commission ("Commission").
(b) The caller must be able to access an Operator of a Company certified by the Commission to provide local exchange service or alternate operator service, 911 (at no charge) where available, and Local Directory Assistance (411) of a Company certified by the Commission.
(c) Emergency numbers (operator assistance and 911) must be clearly posted on each location of a PSP telephone.
(d) Information must be displayed on each PSP telephone consisting of an address and telephone numbers (Toll Free) where a caller can obtain assistance in the event the telephone malfunctions in any way and procedures for obtaining a refund from the PSP.
(e) The telephone number must be displayed on each PSP telephone, unless otherwise prohibited by the Commission.
(f) The PSP shall ensure that the telephone complies with regulations regarding impaired and handicapped access in accordance with the American Disabilities Act (ADA).
(g) Each PSP telephone shall be installed in compliance with all accepted telecommunications industry standards and the current National Electric Code and the National Electric Safety Code.
(h) The charge to a user of a PSP telephone for placement of a local call shall be in compliance with the Order of the Federal Communications Commission in Docket 96-128 and shall be clearly displayed on each PSP telephone.
(i) All PSP telephones in service must return the coins to the user in the event of an incomplete call.
(j) Any limit on the duration of any call (Local or Toll) made from any PSP telephone shall be in compliance with the Order of the Federal Communications Commission in Docket 96-128 and of this Commission.
(k) The rates charged the caller for any 1+ intraLATA/intrastate and interLATA/interstate call made from PSP telephones shall not exceed $2.85 for the 1st minute and $0.35 for each additional minute.
(l) Each PSP telephone must be capable of providing access to all carriers certified to provide long distance service in Georgia and who are in fact providing such service. Access to the carrier of choice must be permitted by means of the dialing sequence chosen by the carrier (e.g., 950-XXX, 1-800 or 10XXX). The dialing sequence chosen by the carrier should include the option of placing an 0+ call without operator intervention. A dialing sequence commencing with 00- shall provide the caller with access to the presubscribed long distance carrier or operator service provider under contract to provide service to the payphone. As to coinless public telephones, it will be necessary for certified Interexchange Carriers providing public telephone service and not reselling local or intraLATA service to make available the service to all Interexchange Carriers that can be reached by means of the dialing sequence chosen by the carrier.
(m) The PSP must register with the Georgia Public Service Commission in the form and manner as prescribed by the Commission before connection to the network of a Company certified to provide local exchange service shall be allowed. Holders of Regular Certificates of Authority for the provision of Payphone Service, as of the date of adoption of these rules, shall be exempt from this provision.
(n) Public Telephone Access Lines will only be provided as twoway service unless authorized by the Commission as set forth in (2) following; and there will be no charge imposed for incoming calls. Coinless Public Telephones do not have to receive incoming calls if the agent of the premises upon which such telephones are installed does not wish such calls to be received.
(o) All PSP telephones must be capable of completing local and toll calls.
(p) Payphone Service Providers may provision Payphone Service through the use of access lines, broadband, voice over Internet protocol ("VoIP"), or any other technically feasible means.
(q) All PSPs shall place on the telephone instrument, a clear and conspicuous disclosure of the presubscribed provider of operator and long distance services and the method by which the user may obtain the rates thereof.
(r) Operator services provided by a company certified by the Commission to provide local exchange service or local alternate operator services shall be accessed by dialing "O" from each PSP telephone.
(s) All PSPs shall provide to the Commission a list of all payphone access lines maintained in the State of Georgia. This list shall state the location and telephone number of each payphone maintained by the PSP within the State of Georgia. Such information may be filed under the Trade Secret provisions of this Commission. The first such list is due thirty (30) days from the date the Commission approves the PSP's registration. Thereafter, the list shall be updated annually with such update being due on or after January 31 of each year. All PSP's shall also be required to state under oath the total number of payphones currently deployed within the State of Georgia. Such information shall not be filed under the Trade Secret provisions of this Commission. This total shall be updated annually with such update being due on or before January 31 of each year.
(t) Each PSP in Georgia must provide such service in compliance with these Rules and any and all registration requirements of this Commission for the provision of PSP telephones in Georgia. In the event a PSP is found to be in violation of any Rule, Regulation, or registration requirement of the Commission, the Commission Staff will issue notice of said violation(s) by letter to the PSP. If said violation(s) are not corrected and the Commission notified of said corrections in writing within twenty (20) days from the date of the Commission Staff's letter, the Staff is authorized to issue a notice to disconnect service to all of the PSP's telephones in Georgia. In ac- cordance with the Commission's Letter Order dated May 16, 1989, in cases where PSP operated in multiple locations, corrections must apply to all locations. If a Disconnection Notice is issued by the Staff, said Order will require all PSP telephones operated by PSP in the State of Georgia to be disconnected.
(2) Waiver of Restriction Requiring Two-way Service.
(a) Definitions:
1. Outward only: A payphone that does not permit incoming calls.
2. Payphone Service Provider (PSP): The owner of the payphone instrument.
3. Location Provider: The owner of the premises on which a payphone is located.
(b) Outward Only: A payphone may be restricted to outward only calling in the following circumstances and under the following conditions upon concurrence of the Payphone Service Provider:
1. An affidavit is signed by the location provider or a law enforcement official, an elected official of the political subdivision in which the payphone is located or the city/county manager of such political subdivision, stating that for safety and/or security reasons or in an attempt to deter potential criminal activity they are requesting the payphone to be restricted to outward only calling; or
2. Upon written request by the Georgia Public Service Commission and after notification to the location provider.
(c) Time of Day Restriction: A payphone may be restricted to operation during certain hours of the day in the following circumstances and under the following conditions upon concurrence of the Payphone Service Provider:
1. An affidavit is signed by the location provider and a law enforcement official, an elected official of the political subdivision in which the payphone is located or a city/county manager of such political subdivision, stating that for safety and/or security reasons or in an attempt to deter potential criminal activity, they are requesting the payphone hours of operation be restricted; or
2. Upon written request of the Georgia Public Service Commission and after notification to the location provider.
3. The Payphone Service Provider must ensure that access to emergency service (911, or 0 where 911 is not available) is accessible at all times.
(d) Documentation: Payphone Service Providers obtain the aforementioned affidavits containing the proper signatures prior to the restrictions of payphones in accordance to (b) and (c) above. This documentation must be maintained by the Payphone Service Provider for the duration of the restriction(s) and be made available for inspection by the Commission and/or its staff upon request.
(e) Signage:
1. Payphone Service Providers must provide proper notice on the instruction card and at a conspicuous location in clear view of payphone users, regarding Outward Only restrictions placed on the use of the payphone.
2. Payphone Service Providers must provide proper notice at a conspicuous location in clear view of payphone users, regarding Time of Day Limitations.
(f) Complaints: After a restriction is implemented, any person may call the Georgia Public Service Commission to complain and such complaint shall be investigated and a report made to the Commission for further action, if any. The Commission has the authority to remove any restriction(s) that have been placed on a payphone.
(g) Disputes on Restrictions: If the Payphone Service Provider, location provider, law enforcement official or elected official do not concur with implementation of any requested time of day restriction set forth in (2)(c) above, the party may, in writing, request an informal hearing before the Commission.

The Commission (which may delegate such matter to its Staff) shall conduct an informal hearing thereon, at which it may take statements or other evidence from the Payphone Service Provider, the location provider, the applicable law enforcement official or elected official and/or Commission Staff. The Commission will then issue its determination of the time of day restriction, if any, it deems appropriate.

(h) Applicability of Rules: The above rules will apply to payphones that are restricted in the manner provided in Rules (b) and (c) after the effective date of these rules. Any payphones already restricted in any manner prior to the effective date of these rules will not be affected by these rules unless further restricted subsequent to the effective date of these rules.

Rule 515-12-1-.32 Automatic Dialing and Announcing Device Equipment

(1) As used in Utility Rule 515-12-1-.32, the phrase "ADAD equipment" shall mean any device or system of devices that is used, whether alone or in conjunction with other equipment, for the purpose of automatically selecting or dialing telephone numbers and disseminating pre-recorded messages to the numbers so selected or dialed.
(2) Any person desiring to use ADAD equipment in this state shall make application for a permit to the Georgia Public Service Commission on forms prescribed by the Commission and shall pay the administrative fee assessed by that agency for such permit. Permits shall be renewed biennially as prescribed by the Commission and upon payment of a renewal fee. Permits shall be subject to suspension or revocation for any violation of Commission Rules or O.C.G.A. §§ 46-5-27 and 46-5-23.
(3) Upon receipt of an application for an ADAD equipment permit, the Commission may, in its discretion, conduct a hearing on the application. In the event that a hearing is scheduled by the Commission, notice thereof shall be given to the applicant at least ten days in advance of the date assigned for the proceeding. After considering the application, the Commission may approve it as filed, approve it with conditions or deny it in its entirety. Upon approval of the application, a permit shall be issued in the form identified as "Permit to Use Automatic Dialing and Announcement Devices."
(4) Persons using ADAD equipment for the purpose of advertising or offering for sale, lease, rental, or as a gift any goods, services, or property, either real or personal, primarily for personal, family, or household use or for the purpose of conducting polls or soliciting information must do so under the following conditions:
(a) Consent shall be received prior to the initiation of the calls as specified in paragraphs (5), (6), and (7).
(b) No calls will be placed between the hours of 9:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m.
(c) Equipment used to place such calls shall be equipped with an automatic clock and calendar device which will operate, even in the event of power failure, to prevent unattended operation in violation of the time limitations set forth herein.
(d) No numbers will be called in either sequential or random fashion. Sequentially placed calls refer to those calls automatically dialed by successively increasing or decreasing integers, or similar methods. Randomly placed calls refer to those calls automatically dialed to a telephone number where no prior relationship exists between the calling and the called party.
(e) The telephone number given to the called party to contact must be one which during normal business hours must be promptly answered in person by a person who is an agent of the person on whose behalf the calls are made and who is willing and able to provide information on the call.
(f) The equipment shall be programmed or utilized in such a manner as to automatically disconnect a called party's line not later than ten seconds after the called party fails to give consent for playing a recorded message or hangs up.
(g) Within 25 seconds after the called party answers and at the conclusion of the call, the name and telephone number of the individual or firm making or paying for the call, including but not limited to the name of the individual or firm on whose behalf the call is made, must be clearly stated.
(h) No calls will be placed to persons or firms whose telephone numbers have been omitted from directories published by local exchange companies serving these customers at the request of such persons or firms.
(i) No calls will be placed to organizations providing emergency services including, but not limited to, hospitals, nursing homes, fire departments, and law enforcement agencies.
(5) Any person wishing to receive telephone calls through the use of ADAD equipment shall give his or her written permission to the person using, employing or directing another person to use, or contracting for the use of such ADAD equipment.
(6) This consent will be valid for two years from the date on which it is executed unless sooner withdrawn. A record of such written consent must be maintained by the person to whom consent is given, and made available to the Commission or its authorized representative during normal business hours and following reasonable notice. This consent shall be withdrawn fifteen days following receipt of the letter of withdrawal.
(7) A person may give consent to a call made with ADAD equipment when a live operator introduces the call and states an intent to play a recorded message. This consent applies only to one particular call and shall not constitute prior consent to receive further calls through the use of such ADAD equipment.
(8) Persons authorized to operate or use Automatic Dialing and Announcing Device equipment are not subject to the restrictions set forth in subparts (4)(b), (c), (d), (e), (f), and (g) of Utility Rule 515-12-1-.32 in instances in which:
(a) Calls are made with ADAD equipment by a nonprofit organization, or by an individual or entity, using such calls other than for commercial profit-making purposes, and the calls do not involve the advertisement or offering for sale, lease, or rental of goods, services, or property;
(b) Calls made with ADAD equipment relate to payment for, service of, or warranty coverage of previously ordered or purchased goods or services; or
(c) Calls made with ADAD equipment relate to collection of lawful debts.
(9) Any person who operates or uses Automatic Dialing and Announcing Devices in violation of the provisions set forth in Utility Rule 515-12-1-.32 will be subject to disconnection of telephone service if the violation does not cease within 10 days from the date of notification to that person.
(10) No person authorized to operate or use Automatic Dialing and Announcing Device equipment shall do so in a manner that violates the requirements of the state or federal "Do Not Call" rules and laws.

Rule 515-12-1-.33 Customer Notification Procedures for Disconnection of Resellers

(1) Except as provided in subsection (2) below, prior to disconnecting a reseller, an underlying carrier shall give such reseller at least seven (7) days written notice by First-Class mail, facsimile, or any other reasonable means, of its intent to disconnect service. A copy of said notice shall also be provided to the Georgia Public Service Commission at the same time it is provided to the reseller. The notice shall include the following:
(a) The date of disconnection,
(b) Whether or not the underlying carrier will serve as an alternative provider of service,
(c) The identity of the underlying carrier and instructions, if appropriate, as to how to contact it to arrange continuation of service,
(d) The charges to be assessed should the underlying carrier assume the duty of providing service, and
(e) A copy of the Commission Utility Rule 515-12-1-.33.
(2) In the event of fraud, abuse or interfering unreasonably with the use of the underlying carrier's service, facilities or network, and if compliance with the prior notice requirement of subsection (1) above would jeopardize the interests of the underlying carrier, the underlying carrier shall have the right to disconnect a reseller immediately. In such event, the underlying carrier shall provide the notice and comply with the provisions set forth in subsection (1) within 24 hours of the date service was disconnected. In addition, within 24 hours of the disconnection, the underlying carrier must file with the Commission a detailed explanation of its reasons, including facts substantiating the allegations of fraud, abuse or interference which justify immediate disconnection.
(3) Within forty-eight (48) hours of receipt of the underlying carrier's written notification to the reseller, the reseller shall give written notification or may make arrangements with the underlying local exchange carrier to place an intercept recording on the enduser's telephone line, to advise the end-user that service has been disconnected. The reseller's notification to its end-users shall include the following information:
(a) The date of the disconnection,
(b) A clear statement that the disconnection is not the fault of the end-user,
(c) A toll-free number where the end-user can contact the reseller or the reseller's designated entity or company or person for additional information about the disconnection,
(d) The ability of the end-user to select an alternative provider of service,
(e) Information about where an end-user can find information about alternative providers such as the telephone directory. Such information shall also provide the end-user with instructions as to how to contact the underlying carrier and other carriers about the continuation of service and the charges to be assessed,
(f) The identity of the underlying carrier, and
(g) The availability of 101XXX access and instructions/referrals on how to access 101XXX to make long distance calls, but that such access will not be available if local service is disconnected.
(4) The reseller shall provide to the Commission and to the underlying carrier one of the following: a copy of the notice of disconnection sent by the reseller to the end user; or, if an intercept recording was installed, written notice that an intercept recording was placed on the end-user's telephone line. Should the end-user fail to elect an alternative provider of local exchange service, and/or long distance interexchange service, the underlying carrier of local exchange service shall provide (in the case of local service) the enduser with seven (7) days of basic local exchange service from the date of disconnection provided in the notice from the underlying carrier to the reseller. The cost of this basic local exchange service may be recovered from the reseller or end-user pursuant to the underlying carrier's tariff on file with the Georgia Public Service Commission. This requirement to provide seven (7) days of basic local ex- change service shall not be applicable to long distance interexchange carriers since the end-user has the ability to access long distance interexchange service by way of 101XXX access.
(5) In the event a reseller fails to respond to the procedures or act as outlined herein, the underlying carrier of local exchange service, provided it has the reseller's customer list or other customer-specific information, shall make a good-faith effort to make personal contact with the end-user (in the case of local service) by telephone, regular mail or by service interrupt recording to reasonably notify the enduser that service will be disconnected. The cost of this notification may be recovered from the reseller by the underlying carrier.

Rule 515-12-1-.34 Code of Conduct for Winback Activities

(1) Definitions.
(a) Customer: Any person, firm partnership, corporation, municipality, cooperative, organization, governmental agency, etc., provided with telecommunications services by a Local Exchange Company.
(b) Local Exchange Company ("LEC") or Local Service Provider: A telecommunications company certified by the Commission to provide local exchange services (as defined in O.C.G.A. Section 46-5-162(11)).
(c) Proprietary Information: Information received by one LEC ("the receiving LEC") from another LEC ("the providing LEC") that:
(i) the providing LEC reasonably designates as proprietary and confidential; or
(ii) the receiving LEC has reason to believe the providing LEC intends to be treated as proprietary and confidential.
(d) Telecommunications service: Any service within the definition of "telecommunications service" set forth in O.C.G.A. Section 46-5-162(18).
(2) Nondiscrimination.
(a) No LEC shall represent, state, or imply that the sale, lease or use of any product or service provided by the LEC or any affiliate, agent or representative is conditioned upon the purchase, lease, use or continuation of any other product or service from such LEC or affiliate, agent or representative of such LEC if:
(i) such LEC or its affiliate, agent or representative does not in fact impose such condition; or
(ii) such LEC or its affiliate, agent or representative is prohibited by applicable law, rule, regulation, order or tariff from imposing such condition.
(b) Nothing herein shall preclude a LEC from bundling telecommunications services with other services as permitted by applicable law.
(3) Employee Conduct.
(a) LECs are prohibited from disparaging or degrading a competitor or its services or employees and must implement training, practices, and policies to comply with this requirement. In addition, no LEC employee, representative or agent while processing an order for the installation or while engaged in the actual installation, repair or restoration of service or equipment on behalf of another LEC shall either directly or indirectly:
(i) represent to any customer that such repair or restoration of service would have occurred sooner if the end-user had obtained service from the LEC of which such individual is an employee, representative or agent; or
(ii) promote the service of the LEC of which such individual is an employee, representative or agent to the customer.
(4) Marketing.
(a) No LEC shall make or disseminate or cause to be made or disseminated before the public by means of any media or advertising device or by public outcry or proclamation or any other manner or means any statement concerning its provision of any telecommunications service, or concerning any circumstances or matter of fact connected with the proposed performance or disposition thereof which is untrue or fraudulent and which is known or which by the exercise of ordinary care should be known to be untrue or fraudulent.
(b) LECs shall comply with all applicable state and federal laws, rules and regulations concerning end user customer privacy.
(c) Consistent with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) "Statement on Deceptive Advertising," LECs shall comply with the following requirements in marketing their telecommunications services:
(i) When an advertisement makes claims that are not directly false but might be misleading in the absence of qualifying or limiting information, the LEC is responsible for ensuring that the advertisement disclosures such qualifying or limiting information and that such disclosures are conspicuous;
(ii) A LEC must ensure that claims in an advertisement related to price must be clearly and conspicuously disclosed, including any monthly fees, minimum per-call charges, or any other information that significantly affects the total charge for the service, calling plan, or call; and
(iii) A LEC must clearly and conspicuously disclose in an advertisement any significant conditions or limitations on the availability of the advertised price.
(d) A LEC shall not misrepresent itself or any other affiliate in a manner that is misleading to an end user customer relative to the services it provides.
(e) A LEC shall not knowingly make unfair or inaccurate comparisons of services offered by another LEC. In making a comparison of the LEC's prices to the prices offered by a competitor, the LEC is making an implied representation that such prices are current and the LEC must have a reasonable basis for this representation.
(5) Transfer of Service.
(a) Subject to all applicable rules, regulations, and orders, no LEC shall:
(i) prevent an end user customer from changing from one LEC to another LEC in an efficient and reasonable manner;
(ii) interfere with an end user customer's selection of another local service provider; or
(iii) cause a change of an end user customer's local service provider without that customer's consent.
(6) Information Sharing and Disclosure.
(a) Each LEC has a duty to protect the confidentiality of proprietary information of, and relating to, any other LEC.
(b) Any LEC that receives or obtains proprietary information from another LEC for the purposes of providing any telecommunications service shall use such information only for such purpose, and shall not use such information for its own marketing efforts.
(7) Operational Requirements.
(a) LECs shall maintain and have on file with this Commission customer service contact information and a company contact escalation list. This information shall be filed on an annual basis, except that LECs shall file any changes to this information on a quarterly basis. The date for the annual filing shall be March 31st of each year. LECs shall make this information available to other LECs.
(b) When an end user customer has switched local service providers, the content of the original provider's final bill may not contain any information that can reasonably be construed as an attempt to target the customer, and ultimately dissuade the customer from moving to their new provider.
(c) LECs that receive "misdirected calls" from former end user customers (e.g., customers who are trying to reach their current local service provider, but have in error reached their previous provider) must either transfer the customer to the current serving LEC or provide a contact number for that carrier.
(8) Repealed.
(9) Preferred Local Carrier Freeze. LECs shall not provide or offer a preferred local carrier freeze.

Rule 515-12-1-.35 Eligible Telecommunications Carriers

(1) An Eligible Telecommunications Carrier must meet the requirements set forth in 47 U.S.C. § 214(e)(1)(A) and (B) and all regulations duly promulgated by the Federal Communications Commission set forth in 47 C.F.R. part 54, Subpart C (Carriers Eligible for Universal Service Support), Subpart D (Universal Service Support for High Cost Areas), or Subpart E (Universal Service Support for Low-Income Consumers).
(2) An Eligible Telecommunications Carrier shall satisfactorily resolve within a reasonable time period any and all complaints filed against it with the Commission's Consumer Affairs Unit.
(3) An Eligible Telecommunications Carrier shall advertise the availability of Lifeline service on its internet website.
(4) An Eligible Telecommunications Carrier shall not charge usage (i.e., decrement minutes) or charge fees of any kind for calls to customer service.
(5) An Eligible Telecommunications Carrier shall file the number of Lifeline subscribers that the carrier serves in the State of Georgia as of June 30th and December 31st of each year, broken down by eligibility criterion. The report shall be filed 15 days from the close of the period.
(6) An Eligible Telecommunications Carrier that provides no-cost service after application of the Lifeline discount shall file with the Commission quarterly reports, due no later than 15 days from the close of each quarter, that report the number of customers who have been deactivated pursuant to 47 C.F.R. § 54.405(e)(3), the number of customers who did not pass annual verification, and the number of customers who were voluntarily deactivated.
(7) Lifeline materials including advertisements, application forms, and verification forms must include the following language: "Unresolved complaints concerning Lifeline service can be directed to the Georgia Public Service Commission's Consumer Affairs Unit at [local and toll free number for the Consumer Affairs Unit]."
(8) Any proposed increases in an Eligible Telecommunications Carrier's least cost service rate available to Lifeline customers, any increase in connection charges, or the addition of any proposed surcharges, other than those specifically provided for in State or Federal law, shall require 30 days written notice to the Commission.
(9) An Eligible Telecommunications Carrier shall include its lowest cost service offering in all Lifeline advertisements.

Rule 515-12-1-.36 Pole Attachment Agreements

(a) The Commission has the authority to determine the rates, fees, terms, conditions, and specifications in any pole attachment agreement entered into by a communications service provider and an electric membership corporation, except as provided in O.C.G.A. § 46-5-200.4(e).
(b) Prior to making any determination under subsection (a), the Commission shall afford interested parties the opportunity to be heard and to present evidence.
(c) The Commission will provide notice of the proceeding that conforms with the requirements of O.C.G.A. § 50-13-13(a).
(d) Parties will have the opportunity to submit pre-filed testimony in accordance with the terms and conditions of the procedural and scheduling order or orders issued by the Commission.
(e) The Commission will hold an in-person or virtual hearing, unless the parties consent to the submission of evidence without such a hearing or the Commission makes a determination under O.C.G.A. § 50-13-15(1) that the hearing will be expedited and the interest of the parties will not be prejudiced substantially by receiving evidence in written form.
(f) The process described in this rule may be supplemented by order of the Commission.