House Telecom Slates USF Hearing

The House Telecommunications Subcommittee has scheduled a hearing
Sept. 16 on chairman Rick Boucher's (D-Va.) Universal Service Reform (USF) bill.

The bill, which the National Cable & Telecommunications
Association supports, makes it clear that broadband is a universal service
supported by the fund, reforms the fund by reducing the support to incumbent
carriers in areas where at least 75% of the households have competitive
choices, and also requires wireless carriers to bid competitively for USF
support.

There
will be a bipartisan Hill staff briefing on the bill Sept. 15.

The FCC has made expanding the fund to underwrite broadband
deployment one of the key elements in its national broadband plan.

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.