The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has announced nearly $1.2 billion in financing to expand broadband access across 32 states under the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund. According to the FCC, this is the “biggest funding round to date,” with 23 broadband businesses providing access to over one million new regions.
Furthermore, the FCC announced the Rural Broadband Accountability Plan, which will increase the amount of audits and verifications conducted this year compared to 2021. The FCC must also publish the findings of verifications, audits, and speed and latency testing on the Universal Service Administration Company’s (USAC) website.
On Twitter, FCC chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel tweeted, “The new Rural Broadband Accountability Plan will streamline our audit and verification processes while also making the results of verifications, audits, and latency testing publicly available for the first time.” “With these safeguards in place, program providers will be able to do their duties.”
As employees moved to working from home and youngsters attended class electronically, the epidemic exacerbated the connectivity gaps afflicting rural America. President Joe Biden signed a $1 trillion infrastructure package in November that includes $65 billion for bringing broadband to every American family to help address the problem. Late last year, the FCC also established a program to deliver cheaper internet to low-income households.
The FCC awarded firms $9.2 billion in the Rural Digital Opportunity fund in December 2020, including a $886 million subsidy for SpaceX. The Elon Musk-owned company was supposed to roll out its satellite internet network in remote areas, but the Federal Communications Commission cautioned SpaceX and other providers last year that they were exploiting these money to deliver service to well-connected places.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is an independent federal organization that governs radio, television, wire, satellite, and cable communications throughout the United States. Broadband access, fair competition, radio frequency use, media responsibility, public safety, and national security are all areas where the FCC has jurisdiction.
The Communications Act of 1934 established the FCC to take over the Federal Radio Commission’s radio regulatory tasks. The Federal Communications Commission took over regulation of wire communications from the Interstate Commerce Commission. The FCC’s required jurisdiction extends to all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and all US territories. Similar communications bodies in other North American countries get varying degrees of cooperation, oversight, and leadership from the FCC. The FCC is wholly supported by regulatory fees. It has a budget of $388 million dollars for fiscal year 2022. As of July 2020, it employs 1,482 government workers.