FCC's Wheeler Draws Fans With E-Rate Cap Hike

WASHINGTON -- Federal Communications Commission chairman Tom Wheeler was getting some kudos from E-rate advocates for his proposal circulating this week to raise the cap on those subsidies, which fund advanced telecom for schools and libraries.

Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), the retiring House Energy & Commerce Committee ranking member, said the E-rate program was "critical" to the nation's competitiveness, echoing Wheeler's take when he announced the scheduling of a vote on the item for the Dec. 11 FCC public meeting.

"Rural and low-income areas must have access to the world class connections they need to take advantage of today’s digital learning tools," Waxman said in a statement. "I urge the FCC to take this next step to put E-Rate on strong footing for generations to come.”

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John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.