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  S.B. No. 259
 
 
 
 
AN ACT
  relating to telecommunications services and markets.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Section 52.007, Utilities Code, is amended by
  adding Subsections (d-1), (d-2), and (d-3) to read as follows:
         (d-1)  The commission may not require a nondominant carrier
  to obtain advance approval for a filing with the commission or a
  posting on the nondominant carrier's Internet website that adds,
  modifies, withdraws, or grandfathers a retail service or the
  service's rates, terms, or conditions.
         (d-2)  In this subsection, "deregulated company" and
  "transitioning company" have the meanings assigned by Section
  65.002.  The commission may not require a deregulated company or
  transitioning company to obtain advance approval for a filing with
  the commission or a posting on the company's Internet website that
  adds, modifies, withdraws, or grandfathers:
               (1)  a nonbasic retail service or the service's rates,
  terms, or conditions; or
               (2)  for a market that has been deregulated, a basic
  network service or the service's rates, terms, or conditions.
         (d-3)  Unless an interconnection agreement contract
  specifies otherwise, an incumbent local exchange carrier shall
  continue to provide to affected resellers of retail services the
  same notice of rate changes or withdrawal of detariffed services
  that it was required to provide prior to detariffing.
         SECTION 2.  Section 52.154, Utilities Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 52.154.  COMMISSION MAY NOT OVERBURDEN. The commission
  may not, by a rule or regulatory practice adopted under this
  chapter, impose on a nondominant telecommunications utility a
  greater regulatory burden than is imposed on:
               (1)  a holder of a certificate of convenience and
  necessity serving the same area; or
               (2)  a deregulated company, as defined by Section
  65.002, that: 
                     (A)  has 500,000 or more access lines in service
  at the time it becomes a deregulated company; or
                     (B)  serves an area also served by the nondominant
  telecommunications utility [serving the same area].
         SECTION 3.  Subchapter E, Chapter 58, Utilities Code, is
  amended by adding Section 58.156 to read as follows:
         Sec. 58.156.  REGULATION OF SERVICES.  Sections 55.001,
  55.002, 55.003, and 55.004 do not apply to retail nonbasic services
  offered by an electing company or by a transitioning company, as
  defined by Section 65.002.
         SECTION 4.  Section 65.101, Utilities Code, is amended by
  adding Subsection (c) to read as follows:
         (c)  A deregulated company that holds a certificate of
  operating authority is a nondominant carrier.
         SECTION 5.  Section 65.102, Utilities Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 65.102.  REQUIREMENTS. (a)  A deregulated company that
  holds a certificate of operating authority issued under this
  subchapter[:
               [(1)     is a nondominant carrier governed in the same
  manner as a holder of a certificate of operating authority issued
  under Chapter 54;
               [(2)]  is not required to:
               (1) [(A)]  fulfill the obligations of a provider of
  last resort;
               (2) [(B)]  comply with retail quality of service
  standards or reporting requirements;
               (3) [(C)]  file an earnings report with the commission
  unless the company is receiving support from the Texas High Cost
  Universal Service Plan; or
               (4) [(D)]  comply with a pricing requirement other than
  a requirement prescribed by this subchapter[; and
               [(3)     is subject to the following provisions in the
  same manner as an incumbent local exchange company that is not
  deregulated:
                     [(A)  Sections 54.156, 54.158, and 54.159;
                     [(B)  Section 55.012; and
                     [(C)  Chapter 60].
         (b)  Notwithstanding any other provision of this title, the
  commission has only the authority provided by this section over a
  deregulated company that holds a certificate of operating authority
  issued under this subchapter.  Subject to Subsection (c), the
  following provisions apply to a deregulated company and may be
  enforced by the commission using the remedies provided by
  Subchapter B, Chapter 15, and Subsection (d):
               (1)  Subchapter A, Chapter 15;
               (2)  Subchapters A, C, and D, Chapter 17, as applicable
  to carriers holding a certificate of operating authority;
               (3)  Sections 52.007, 52.060, and 52.156;
               (4)  Sections 54.001, 54.002, 54.003, 54.004, 54.005,
  54.006, 54.008(a), 54.101, 54.102, 54.103, 54.105, 54.151, 54.156,
  54.158, 54.159, 54.255, 54.256, 54.257, 54.259, 54.260, and 54.261;
               (5)  Sections 55.010, 55.015, 55.123, 55.133, 55.134,
  55.136, and 55.137;
               (6)  Chapter 56, except Subchapters F and G;
               (7)  Chapter 60;
               (8)  Chapter 62;
               (9)  Subchapter E, Chapter 64;
               (10)  Sections 65.001, 65.002, 65.003, and 65.004, this
  subchapter, and Subchapter E of this chapter; and
               (11)  Chapter 66.
         (c)  Nothing in this subchapter affects the continuing
  applicability of the following provisions of this title:
               (1)  Sections 51.003 and 51.010(c);
               (2)  Section 52.002(d);
               (3)  Sections 54.204, 54.205, and 54.206; and
               (4)  Section 65.051.
         (d)  The commission may hear complaints of retail and
  wholesale customers against deregulated companies that are in the
  scope of the commission's authority provided by this section. 
  [Except as provided by Subsection (c), in each deregulated market,
  a deregulated company shall make available to all residential
  customers uniformly throughout that market the same price, terms,
  and conditions for all basic and non-basic services, consistent
  with any pricing flexibility available to such company.
         [(c)     A deregulated company may offer to an individual
  residential customer a promotional offer that is not available
  uniformly throughout the market if the company makes the offer
  through a medium other than direct mail or mass electronic media and
  the offer is intended to retain or obtain a customer.]
         SECTION 6.  Section 55.012, Utilities Code, is repealed.
         SECTION 7.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2013.
 
 
 
 
 
  ______________________________ ______________________________
     President of the Senate Speaker of the House     
 
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 259 passed the Senate on
  March 13, 2013, by the following vote:  Yeas 31, Nays 0.
 
 
  ______________________________
  Secretary of the Senate    
 
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 259 passed the House on
  May 15, 2013, by the following vote:  Yeas 145, Nays 0, two
  present not voting.
 
 
  ______________________________
  Chief Clerk of the House   
 
 
 
  Approved:
 
  ______________________________ 
              Date
 
 
  ______________________________ 
            Governor