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OPASTCO

FCC/Universal Service

Rural Telecom Associations Raise Concerns Over USF Reform

WASHINGTON, July 18, 2011 – The FCC should consider costs and service areas of rural broadband customers as it reforms the Universal Service Fund (USF) to include broadband expansion, urged members of congress and rural telecom associations Thursday. The rural telecom associations announced at the Capitol building the inauguration of a DC-based print advertising campaign to highlight the economic harm of the FCC’s current proposal. The associations believe that USF reform as it is presently being considered would result in lost jobs, poor health care coverage and stifled innovation due to blocked access to global markets. Keep Reading

FCC/Universal Service

Genachowski Calls Universal Service Fund ‘Broken’ in Speech to OPASTCO

WASHINGTON, July 29, 2010 –Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski, speaking to the annual Organization for the Promotion and Advancement of Small Telecommunications Companies (OPASTCO) convention in Seattle yesterday, told his audience that he agreed with bipartisan critics of the Universal Fund as being “broken.” “As the math of the overall Universal Service Fund gets worse each year, the importance of broadband to rural America gets greater,” Genachowski said. “There is a clear need to reform USF – not to end it, but to reorient USF to directly support broadband all over America. “ Keep Reading

FCC

Small Telcos Push for Broadband-Focused Universal Service Reform

WASHINGTON, December 7, 2009 - Broadband should be the central focus of the next generation of the Universal Service Fund, OPASTCO said Monday in comments filed with the Federal Communications Commission. TheOrganization for the Promotion and Aid of Small Telecommunications Companies' comments highlight a plan to push affordable broadband to the rural areas those carriers serve. Keep Reading

Universal Service Fund Needs Overhaul, and Most Want Broadband Included

WASHINGTON, November 18, 2009 - The Universal Service Fund is in need of an overhaul to equalize costs among stakeholders and modernize programs to include broadband services, a group of industry representatives and regulators told the House Energy and Commerce subcommittee on Communications, Technology and the Internet during a Tuesday hearing. The hearing examined a discussion draft of the Universal Service Reform Act of 2009, authored by subcommittee Chairman Rick Boucher, D-Va., and Rep. Lee Terry, R-Neb. The Universal Service program, which existed for decades before being codified in the 1996 Telecommunications Act, is under "tremendous pressure" and requires a comprehensive effort to reform its operations, Boucher said during opening remarks. Keep Reading

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