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FCC Universal Licensing System, Other Applications to be Down for Maintenance


FCC website maintenance in early September will make the Universal Licensing System (ULS), the Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS), the Electronic Document Management System (EDOCS) and other public applications unavailable for more than 5 days. The Commission said the outage will begin at 2200 UTC on Wednesday, September 2, and continue through the Labor Day weekend. The maintenance work should be completed by 1200 UTC on Tuesday, September 8. During the ULS outage, it will not be possible to file any Amateur Radio applications.


“[M]ost Commission resources normally accessible through the Commission’s website, including access to all electronic filing systems and electronic dockets, will be inaccessible for the same period, with the exception of the Network Outage Reporting System (NORS), the Consumer Help Center (CHC), and the Disaster Information Reporting System (DIRS), which will remain available,” an FCC Public Notice said on August 20. “The Commission’s website will remain available, but with reduced content and limited search capabilities.” According to the Public Notice, the FCC will follow its normal schedule of operation during the maintenance period, but voicemail will be offline, and most Commission staffers will not have access to e-mail. Static content webpages on the domain, such as the FCC consumer guides, should remain available during the outage.

Although the regulatory fee for Amateur Radio vanity call sign applications will disappear on September 3, prospective applicants now will have to wait until September 8 (1200 UTC) — or until after the ULS is back online — to file. The FCC has told ARRL that the approximately 18-day waiting period for a vanity call sign to be granted will remain in place “for now.”

The FCC will extend filing deadlines for all regulatory and enforcement filings that fall during the maintenance period. Filings due on September 2, 3, 4, or 8 now will be due on Wednesday, September 9. “Except for the due dates specified herein, we are not automatically extending the deadlines for any other comment or filing periods that will be running during this time period, but requests for extension of time will be considered consistent with the Commission’s normal practice,” the FCC Public Notice said. “To the extent the due dates for filings to which reply or responsive pleadings are allowed are affected by this Public Notice, the due dates for reply or responsive pleadings shall be extended by the same number of days.”

In a blog, “Modernizing the FCC’s IT,” FCC CIO David Bray said that with the world and the technology we use are changing rapidly, “the information technology used by the Federal Communications Commission must change as well.” Bray said the FCC has “made significant progress to upgrade and modernize our infrastructure, and we continue to work on modernizing the FCC’s legacy IT systems with the resources we have available.”

“We understand that this temporary downtime before and during the Labor Day Weekend may be inconvenient for some FCC stakeholders,” Bray added.




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