Memos, Resources

Memo: Potential USF Funding Reductions Due to Unsubsidized Competitors

June 16, 2023

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is to eliminate Universal Service Fund (USF) high-cost support to Eligible Telecommunications Carriers (ETCs) in areas where an unsubsidized competitor is currently providing service. This applies to programs such as A-CAM, CAF-BLS, and The Alaska Plan-Phase 1. The current definition of unsubsidized competitor is “a facilities-based provider of residential fixed voice and broadband service that does not receive high-cost support.”[1] Typically, for an ETC to lose USF funding, the unsubsidized competitor must meet the service quality standards of the relevant high-cost program (such as speed, latency, and capacity requirements) and cover a certain portion of the ETC’s area (percentage based or location specific).[2]

[1] 47 C.F.R. § 54.5.

[2] See generally 47 C.F.R. § 54.319 (relating to CAF BLS).

Download the full memo for additional information on Vantage Point Advocacy for High-Cost Recipients.

VPS Memo – Unsubsidized Competitors

For additional information, please contact the following members of the Vantage Point Team:

Jeff Smith at (503) 612-4409

Mikaela Burma, JD at (605) 995-1742

Jolyn Doering at (605) 995-1773