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Friday, August 18, 2006

The wooden stake?

Four more appeal decisions today: granted, granted, granted, granted. The synopsis:
School Administrative District 67: SLD asked for the tech plan for the "wrong" year.
Gayville-Volin: A single printed date with two signatures is OK.
Douglas-Omaha: Tech Director quit, so no one did the 486: forgiven.
Zapata County: Tech Facilitator was in Iraq, couldn't respond to PIA: that's OK.

If I worked for USAC, I'd be steamed about paragraph 7 of Zapata, which starts: "Furthermore, it appears that Zapata County may have provided the information in question when it filed its appeal with USAC. While we do not make a finding here as to whether Zapata County has provided all requested relevant Item 21 Attachments, we find that USAC should review the information in its possession to ensure that it actually requires additional information from Zapata County to process its application." If USAC had enough info, the FCC should say so; if not, why ding USAC? I'll bet USAC would have loved to have the FCC say: "The [whatever] supplied by Zapata County was sufficient to demonstrate [whatever]," instead of "may have" and "we do not make a finding."

But the decision that could be interesting is Gayville. When the Richmond County order came out, I declared the death of the "two-signature/two-date" rule; the FCC said a contract with one date is OK. But the 2s/2d rule would not die; USAC took the position that the decision only applied to that one contract.

Could Gayville be the wooden stake in the heart of 2s/2d? The FCC has said once again that a contract with a single printed date and two signatures is a valid contract, and cited Richmond County as precedent. Will it be enough for USAC? I wish the FCC would come out with the explicit statement: "Two handwritten signatures are not required." Or publish an erratum to the Fifth Report and Order, striking the words "and dated" from the phrase "signed and dated by both parties," which gave birth to 2s/2d.

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