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E&C to Mark Up CURB Lifeline Bill

The House Energy & Commerce Committee has fast-tracked a vote on H.R. 4884, the CURB Lifeline Act, which has scheduled an April 18 markup (amendments, if any, and, if all goes as planned, a vote to refer it to the House for a floor vote.)

It held a legislative hearing on the bill this week.

The bill would cap the Lifeline Universal Service Fund the FCC has just voted not to cap, and would cut off voice-only subsidies while the FCC has proposed a three-year phase-out with a possibility for extension.

Republicans are moving quickly on the bill, which is opposed by Democrats, following the collapse--on the day of the FCC's March 31 public meeting--of a Republican-backed compromise lifeline proposal, which would have capped the fund.

Lifeline is the subsidy to low-income residents for advanced telecom, which the FCC is migrating from voice to broadband.