USF/ICC Zone

The changing landscape of USF and ICC have profound implications on the broadband ecosystem. Stay tuned to Telecompetitor for the latest news, analysis, & commentary.

Broadband Provider Groups Seek CAF II Auction Changes

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Organizations representing broadband providers have asked the FCC to modify its proposal for the Connect America Fund (CAF II) Auction. The CAF II auction will award funding rejected by price cap carriers in parts of 20 states. The auction is designed to award funding to...Learn More

Report: School Broadband Availability Improving, But Rural Fiber Still Lagging

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School broadband availability has increased dramatically as a result of changes made several years ago to the FCC E-rate program, with 94% of schools now providing connectivity at rates of at least 100 kbps per student, says a report released today from non-profit organization Education...Learn More

CAF II Auction Rules: FCC Explains How Proposed Auction to Fund Rural Broadband Would Work

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FCC officials today conducted a webinar explaining how proposed CAF II auction rules would work. The auction will award funding to help cover the cost of deploying broadband in unserved rural areas. It is expected to take place in 2018, officials said. The rules discussed...Learn More

B-CROP Act Aims to Add $50M to RUS Rural Broadband Funding

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Two senators have announced the Broadband Connections for Rural Opportunities Program (B-CROP) Act, which would increase Rural Utilities Service funding for rural broadband by up to $50 million annually. Traditionally, RUS rural broadband funding has consisted only of low-interest loans, but the B-CROP Act calls...Learn More

FCC Mobility Auction Challenge Process Revised, FCC to Collect More Data

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The FCC today took two steps aimed at spurring rural mobile broadband deployment, including revising the rules for the mobility auction challenge process and establishing a procedure to explore the use of additional spectrum for mobile broadband and potentially other uses. Mobility Auction Challenge Process...Learn More

CAF Auction Will Provide $2 Billion for Rural Broadband, FCC Anticipates ‘New’ Service Providers

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The FCC said today that it expects to conduct a reverse auction of up to $1.98 billion in Connect America Fund (CAF) money in 2018, which will go toward the cost of bringing broadband to rural areas lacking broadband service. CAF auction funds are to...Learn More

TDS A-CAM Funded Broadband Expansion in Full Swing, Projects Underway in Five States

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TDS has released a series of announcements highlighting rural broadband expansion, funded in part from the FCC’s Connect America Fund. These TDS A-CAM (Alternative Connect America Cost Model) funded broadband projects include markets in five states. The A-CAM program offers $5.283 billion in support for...Learn More

Frontier Touts Early Achievement of CAF Buildout Requirements for Rural Broadband

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Frontier said today that it has deployed broadband to 40% of the locations in nine states for which the company accepted Connect America Fund (CAF) dollars, putting the company ahead of schedule in meeting CAF buildout requirements. Those requirements call for the 40% milestone to...Learn More

GAO: Report Finds Evidence of FCC Lifeline Program Fraud

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A three-year study by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) has revealed evidence of FCC Lifeline program fraud. Evidence included large numbers of fake and deceased recipients, lack of verification of more than one-third of participants and other significant management and procedural problems, according to...Learn More

NTCA: $300M in Rural Broadband Investment at Risk Due to USF Reductions

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There are ongoing reductions in the total amount of funding provided by the Universal Service Fund (USF) to regulated telcos due to federal budget control mechanisms that are chilling rural broadband investment, according to a survey by NTCA-The Rural Broadband Association. The average reduction in...Learn More

Iowa TV News Report Highlights Complexity, Risks of Rural Broadband Regulatory Framework

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Local Des Moines CBS affiliate KCCI featured a story recently on ‘cord cutting’ of wireline telephone service that highlights the challenges of the current rural broadband regulatory framework for small, rural telcos. The report is somewhat misleading, in that it doesn’t provide a full explanation....Learn More

Stakeholders Urge Senate to Address USF Funding Shortfall for Rural Broadband

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Stakeholders today urged the U.S. Senate to address a funding shortfall in the Universal Service Fund estimated at approximately $210 million annually, with the goal of spurring broadband deployment to rural areas by covering a portion of deployment costs. In a hearing conducted by the...Learn More

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