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Diane Publishing Books
Telecommunications: FCC Has Reformed the High-Cost Program, but Oversight and Management Could Be Improved
Mark L. Goldstein (au)
The high-cost program within the Universal Service Fund (USF) provides subsidies to telecommunications carriers that serve rural and other remote areas with high costs of providing telephone service. The annual program cost has grown from $2.6 billion in 2001 to over $4 billion in 2011, mainly funded through fees added to consumersäó» phone bills. The program is managed by the Fed. Communications Comm. (FCC), which noted that providing universal access to broadband is äóģthe universal service challenge of our time.äó¯ Accordingly, FCC made changes to the program to make funds available to support both telephone and broadband. Using USF monies for broadband could cause the size of the fund to greatly expand unless FCC improved its management and oversight to ensure the programäó»s cost-effectiveness. This report examines FCCäó»s (1) plans for repurposing the high-cost program for broadband; and (2) plans to address previously identified management challenges as it broadens the programäó»s scope. Tables. This is a print on demand report.
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