FCC’s proposed Universal Service cap would undercut efforts to close digital divide

CWA filed comments with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in opposition to the FCC's recent proposal to cap the Universal Service Fund (USF). The USF supports four programs designed to provide universal quality access to voice and broadband services at just, reasonable, and affordable rates. These programs include the Connect America Fund for rural communities, the Schools and Libraries program or E-Rate, the Lifeline program for low-income households, and the Rural Health Care program.

The FCC has proposed to cap the USF at $11.42 billion, which would force its programs to compete for resources, hurting a wide range of stakeholders and beneficiaries. Each of the USF programs already has a cap or targeted budget, making an overarching cap unnecessary. Moreover, a USF cap would undercut attempts to close the digital divide.

Read CWA’s comments here. 

Links:

Comments of Communications Workers of America in the matter of universal service contribution methodology (FCC, July 27, 2019)