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Category Archives: High-Cost Universal Service

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FCC Expands on Bidding Procedures in Connect America Fund (CAF) Phase II Auction Webinar

Posted in Broadband Deployment, High-Cost Universal Service, Wireless

Signaling a clear commitment to a successful reverse auction process for the Connect America Fund (“CAF”) Phase II proceeding, members of the FCC’s Rural Broadband Auctions Task Force hosted a webinar yesterday that provided an overview of the CAF Phase II application requirements, and an in-depth review of the bidding procedures for this first of its kind… Continue Reading

With USF Auctions Approaching, FCC Establishes Rural Broadband Auctions Task Force

Posted in Broadband Deployment, High-Cost Universal Service, Wireless

On April 3, 2017, the FCC announced the formation of the Rural Broadband Auctions Task Force to implement the upcoming Universal Service Fund (USF) related auctions.  Although there was no discussion of a task force in the recent Connect America Fund (CAF) Phase II Auction Order or the Mobility Fund Phase II Order, the auctions… Continue Reading

FCC Announces Details for Mobility Fund Phase II

Posted in High-Cost Universal Service, Wireless

The FCC adopted an order today that establishes Phase II of the Mobility Fund.  As we have previously reported, the FCC established the Mobility Fund to provide universal service subsidies to help expand and preserve 4G LTE mobile coverage in rural areas and Tribal lands across the country.  Through Mobility Fund Phase II, the FCC… Continue Reading

FCC Finalizes Criteria for CAF Phase II Auction

Posted in Broadband Deployment, High-Cost Universal Service, Wireless

Today the FCC approved an order that moves the nearly two billion dollar Connect America Fund (CAF) Phase II Auction competitive bidding process forward.   As we have previously reported, the Phase II auction will provide support (subsidies) to broadband providers willing to deploy broadband and voice services to unserved Americans.  The FCC will use four… Continue Reading

FCC Releases 2016 Broadband Progress Report

Posted in Broadband Deployment, High-Cost Universal Service

According to the Federal Communications Commission, 90 percent of Americans have access to broadband Internet access service at the FCC’s benchmark speeds of 25 Mbps for downloads/3 Mbps for uploads. But the FCC also found that 34 million Americans still lack access to the benchmark speeds, and despite significant progress in recent years to expand… Continue Reading

Funds for Broadband Deployments in Rural Areas May Be Available to Competitors Under FCC CAF Phase II Order

Posted in Broadband Deployment, High-Cost Universal Service

Competitive broadband providers, including cable operators, CLECs and wireless ISPs, will be permitted to seek subsidies to deploy broadband networks in unserved areas under a new FCC order approved today.  Under “Phase II” of the Connect America Fund (CAF) the FCC will disburse up to $9 billion in support (over at least a five year… Continue Reading

FCC Adopts Lifeline Reform Order; Link Up Eliminated Except in Tribal Lands

Posted in High-Cost Universal Service

By James Smith and Danielle Frappier The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) yesterday (Jan. 31, 2012) adopted its long-awaited Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (Order and Rulemaking) reforming and modernizing the federal Low Income program, with the goals of preserving this important program while introducing significant program funding reductions and cost savings. The… Continue Reading

FCC Promises Quick Action on Intercarrier Compensation Reform in Announcing First “Workshop” on the Issue

Posted in High-Cost Universal Service, Intercarrier Compensation

Following its release of the most recent intercarrier compensation and USF reform proposal (NPRM), the FCC has announced that it will convene the first of several “public workshops to identify solutions to key issues in the USF/ICC proceeding.”  (See Public Notice) This first workshop will be held at the FCC’s offices in Washington, D.C. on… Continue Reading

Agenda for March Open Meeting Released, Includes Rules on Video Description and Advanced Communications Services, Retransmission Consent, and Lifeline/Link Up Reform

Posted in Accessibility (Persons with Disabilities), High-Cost Universal Service, Spectrum Initiatives

Yesterday the FCC released a tentative agenda for its March 3rd open meeting that includes seven matters for discussion, including rules for video description and advanced communications services, as required under the recent federal disability legislation known as the Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act (CVAA). (See earlier DWT Advisory on the CVAA here.) The… Continue Reading

DWT ADVISORY: FCC Releases Details on Net Neutrality Rules

Posted in Accessibility (Persons with Disabilities), Broadband Adoption, Broadband Deployment, Consumer Disclosure Requirements, E-rate, High-Cost Universal Service, Infrastructure (Poles, Conduit and Rights of Way), Intercarrier Compensation, Mobile Broadband, Navigation Devices, Privacy and Cybersecurity, Spectrum Initiatives, Tribal Communities

 On Dec. 23, 2010, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released its Report and Order (R&O), and the text of the net neutrality rules it adopted on Dec. 21, 2010. The rules are summarized in our prior advisory, but the R&O contains many important details and nuances. (For the full text of the order, see Report and Order).   Transparency… Continue Reading

FCC Adopts Net Neutrality Rules; Relies on Title I Ancillary Jurisdiction

Posted in Accessibility (Persons with Disabilities), Broadband Adoption, Broadband Deployment, E-rate, High-Cost Universal Service, Infrastructure (Poles, Conduit and Rights of Way), Intercarrier Compensation, Mobile Broadband, Navigation Devices, Privacy and Cybersecurity, Spectrum Initiatives, Tribal Communities

This morning at its monthly open meeting, the Federal Communications Commission adopted net neutrality rules which largely adopt existing Internet traffic and management practices, impose new non-discrimination and transparency rules, but leave room for specialized or managed services and usage based billing. The order is notable for basing jurisdiction mostly on Title I and ancillary… Continue Reading

Notes on Chairman’s Open Internet Remarks – Rules Will Preserve Reasonable Network Management Practices; Distinguish Between Mobile and Fixed Broadband; No Reclassification of Broadband Services

Posted in Accessibility (Persons with Disabilities), Broadband Adoption, Broadband Deployment, Consumer Disclosure Requirements, E-rate, High-Cost Universal Service, Infrastructure (Poles, Conduit and Rights of Way), Intercarrier Compensation, Mobile Broadband, Navigation Devices, Privacy and Cybersecurity, Spectrum Initiatives, Tribal Communities

Earlier today, Chairman Genachowski held a press conference to deliver his remarks on his proposed Open Internet rules, which are scheduled for vote at the FCC’s December 21 open meeting.  The Chairman prefaced his summary of the rules by noting that they are in principle rooted in policy statements of past "Republican" Chairmen Powell and… Continue Reading

FCC to Release Order on “Open Internet” Rules at December Meeting; Chairman To Discuss Issue Today at 10:30 am

Posted in Accessibility (Persons with Disabilities), Broadband Adoption, Broadband Deployment, Consumer Disclosure Requirements, E-rate, High-Cost Universal Service, Infrastructure (Poles, Conduit and Rights of Way), Intercarrier Compensation, Mobile Broadband, Navigation Devices, Privacy and Cybersecurity, Spectrum Initiatives, Tribal Communities

Last night the FCC released its tentative agenda for its next open meeting to be held December 21.  Two items are scheduled for consideration, the first being an Order (not a rulemaking or inquiry) adopting Open Internet rules, also known as net neutrality.  The text summarizing the agenda item is as follows: Open Internet Order:… Continue Reading

FCC Proposes “Mobility Fund” to Subsidize Providers Serving Areas That Lack 3G

Posted in E-rate, High-Cost Universal Service

In today’s open meeting, the FCC unanimously adopted an NPRM that proposes to create a new universal service program, the “Mobility Fund,” that would provide subsidies to mobile providers in areas of the country currently lacking 3G coverage. They have proposed to fund this effort with a one-time allocation of $100-300 million, funded by USF… Continue Reading

E-rate Reforms Adopted: Cap Now Indexed to Inflation and Dark Fiber to be Funded as “Miscellaneous”

Posted in E-rate, High-Cost Universal Service

In yesterday’s open meeting, the FCC adopted an order that implements the E-rate reforms proposed as part of the agency’s implementation of the National Broadband Plan. The most significant reforms that were adopted are: Increase in funding by indexing the $2.25 billion to the rate of inflation (resulting in “less than” $25 million in additional… Continue Reading

FCC Seeks Comment On “Business Broadband Marketplace,” Signaling Potential Establishment of Competition Policies for Broadband Business Services

Posted in Accessibility (Persons with Disabilities), Broadband Adoption, Broadband Deployment, Consumer Disclosure Requirements, E-rate, High-Cost Universal Service, Infrastructure (Poles, Conduit and Rights of Way), Intercarrier Compensation, Mobile Broadband, Navigation Devices, Privacy and Cybersecurity, Spectrum Initiatives, Tribal Communities

Today the FCC released a Public Notice seeking comments on what the FCC calls the “business broadband marketplace.”  While this comment cycle is not directly related to any current FCC proceeding (the docket number – WC Docket No. 10-188 – was only created yesterday), the magnitude of information sought hints at the establishment of future regulatory policies, if not… Continue Reading

Further Inquiry in Open Internet Proceeding Focused on Managed Services and Wireless Broadband Practices; Pole Attachment Proceeding Replies Extended to October 4; Tentative Agenda Set for September Open Meeting Released

Posted in Accessibility (Persons with Disabilities), Broadband Adoption, Broadband Deployment, Consumer Disclosure Requirements, E-rate, High-Cost Universal Service, Infrastructure (Poles, Conduit and Rights of Way), Intercarrier Compensation, Mobile Broadband, Navigation Devices, Privacy and Cybersecurity, Spectrum Initiatives, Tribal Communities

This week the Federal Communications Commission issued three important items related to the National Broadband Plan, and broadband services generally.  On September 1, the Commission issued a Public Notice to initiate a Further Inquiry Into Two Under-Developed Issues In The Open Internet Proceeding (GN Docket No. 09-191, and WC Docket No. 07-52).  The original Open Internet NPRM (which we discussed at length… Continue Reading

DWT ALERT: FCC Proposes Major Overhaul of Rural Health Care Universal Service Program

Posted in High-Cost Universal Service

By Jim Smith On July 15, 2010, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a new Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) aimed at reinvigorating and reforming the perennially underutilized Rural Health Care (RHC) support mechanism of the Universal Service Fund (USF). The deadlines for public comments and reply comments on this latest of the FCC’s initiatives… Continue Reading

Agenda Released for Commission’s July 15 Open Meeting

Posted in High-Cost Universal Service, Mobile Broadband, Spectrum Initiatives

As expected from its tentative agenda released in late June, the Commission’s July 15 open meeting will address three agenda items, including an NPRM to reform the Universal Service Rural Health Care Fund, and an NPRM and NOI to "increase value, utilization, and investment in the 2 GHz, Big LEO, and L-bands of the Mobile Satellite Service."   (The… Continue Reading

Tentative Agenda for July Open Meeting Released

Posted in High-Cost Universal Service, Mobile Broadband, Spectrum Initiatives

Last week the Federal Communications Commission released its tentative agenda for its July 15 open meeting.  According to the agenda, the Commission plans to discuss three items, two of which are related to the Commission’s broadband efforts to implement the National Broadband Plan.  Specifically, the Commission intends to adopt a Rural Health Care Reform NPRM to "expand… Continue Reading

Reclassification NOI Update – Comment Dates Already Set

Posted in Accessibility (Persons with Disabilities), Broadband Adoption, Broadband Deployment, Consumer Disclosure Requirements, E-rate, High-Cost Universal Service, Infrastructure (Poles, Conduit and Rights of Way), Intercarrier Compensation, Mobile Broadband, Navigation Devices, Privacy and Cybersecurity, Spectrum Initiatives, Tribal Communities

This morning the Federal Communications Commission held its monthly open meeting, this time to discuss the Commission’s proposed reclassification efforts for broadband services.  In a three-to-two vote (Commissioners McDowell and Baker dissented), the Notice of Inquiry was adopted, and will seek comment on three ways to regulate broadband – under the Commission’s Title I ancillary authority; under… Continue Reading

NOI on Broadband Reclassification Scheduled for Release at June 17 Open Meeting

Posted in Accessibility (Persons with Disabilities), Broadband Adoption, Broadband Deployment, Consumer Disclosure Requirements, E-rate, High-Cost Universal Service, Infrastructure (Poles, Conduit and Rights of Way), Intercarrier Compensation, Mobile Broadband, Navigation Devices, Privacy and Cybersecurity, Spectrum Initiatives, Tribal Communities

This is a reminder that the FCC will hold its next open meeting on Thursday, June 17.  As we noted earlier, and as confirmed by the Commission’s recent Meeting Agenda released this past Friday, this open meeting is expected to be quite entertaining, as it is dedicated to discussing a Notice of Inquiry to initiate… Continue Reading

FCC Agenda for June Open Meeting Dedicated to…Reclassification of Broadband Services

Posted in Accessibility (Persons with Disabilities), Broadband Adoption, Broadband Deployment, Consumer Disclosure Requirements, E-rate, High-Cost Universal Service, Infrastructure (Poles, Conduit and Rights of Way), Intercarrier Compensation, Mobile Broadband, Navigation Devices, Privacy and Cybersecurity, Spectrum Initiatives, Tribal Communities

The FCC has released its tentative agenda for its June 17, 2010 open meeting.  Unlike recent agendas for April and May, this one is written such that the June meeting will be dedicated to one, and only one, issue – the reclassification of broadband access service as a telecommunications service.*  According to the agenda, the Commission intends to adopt… Continue Reading