September 14, 2023
Webinar: Avoiding Common Audit Findings
Please join USAC on Thursday, October 26th from 3:00 PM ET to 4:00 PM ET to learn how to avoid common findings of High Cost beneficiary audits. In this session, USAC’s High Cost and Internal Audit staff will discuss common carrier errors discovered during beneficiary audits. Register Here
July 20, 2023
Form 481 and Broadband Deployment Data Now Available to Tribal Officials
Tribal governments may now access the most recent FCC Form 481 filings submitted by telecommunications carriers that serve their lands with financing from the Universal Service Fund (USF) High Cost program, as well as deployment data for broadband networks supported by the Connect America Fund.
The High Cost Program ensures universal availability of essential telecommunications services in rural America, including Indian Country. The program provides funding to telecommunications carriers to reach rural communities where the market alone cannot support the high cost of deploying network infrastructure and supplying connectivity. Historically, High Cost has subsidized traditional voice service to ensure that rates in rural and urban areas are reasonably comparable. The FCC, however, is reforming the program to support broadband with the modernized Connect America Fund, or CAF. Read the full announcement here.
July 20, 2023
Form 481 and Broadband Deployment Data Now Available to State Officials
State utility commissions may now access the most recent FCC Form 481 filings for carriers under their jurisdiction through the 54.314 certification filing system in E-File, and state-level deployment data for broadband service supported by the Connect America Fund (CAF) through the Connect America Fund Broadband Map, or CAF Map.
State utility commissions rely on Form 481 filings and broadband deployment data submitted to USAC to perform the annual certification of Eligible Telecommunications Carriers (ETCs) under their jurisdiction to be able to participate in the High Cost program, which provides funding to carriers to deliver service in rural areas where the market alone cannot support the high cost of deploying network infrastructure and supplying connectivity. Read the full announcement here.
July 12, 2023
USAC Updates CAF Map
USAC has released an updated version of the Connect America Fund Broadband Map – CAF Map – an interactive online map that shows the impact of the Connect America Fund (CAF) on broadband expansion to close the digital divide in rural America. The Connect America Fund – a centerpiece of the federal Universal Service Fund (USF) High Cost program – provides funding to telecommunications carriers to bring advanced communications networks and reliable, high-speed Internet access to rural communities that might otherwise go unserved.
First launched in 2018, the CAF Map displays the geographic locations – by latitude and longitude – where carriers that receive CAF support have built out mass-market, high-speed Internet service. The latest version of the map contains updated information to reflect broadband deployment through Dec. 31, 2022.
The CAF Map is a key source of information about CAF-supported broadband deployment for consumers, researchers and policy makers at the federal, state and local levels. Read the full announcement here.
July 6, 2023
USAC Relationship with Program Consultants
Some Universal Service Fund program applicants choose to employ consultants during the program application process. Please be advised that USAC does not affiliate or endorse individual consultants to support Universal Service Fund program applicants. Consultants who work with USF program applicants may not state or imply that their services are endorsed or recommended by USAC. If you have questions about USAC programs and the resources available to support applicants, please visit the program homepages.