FCC Commissioner Nathan Simington's Statement Regarding the Affordable Connectivity Program Rules

For the most part, I am very satisfied with the resulting order, which incorporated extensive feedback from all commissioners’ offices, industry, and other groups outside of the FCC. I vote to approve [the Affordable Connectivity Progam rules], but I concur in part in order to draw attention to two issues. 9Simington was an advocate for the inclusion of the Social Security Numbers of Affordable Connectivity Program recipients, which was not included in the final rules.) The Universal Service Administrative Company will have more difficulty verifying the identities of ACP recipients, and nothing will stop non-qualified aliens from enrolling in the program and receiving taxpayer funds that they may not be entitled to receive. In addition, the commissioner took issue with a few other statutory requirements in the program's rules including "the ban on the use of credit checks to determine which plan an ACP recipient can enroll in, the ban on declining to enroll a household due to past or present arrearages with a broadband provider, and the 90-day period that providers must wait before disconnecting non-paying ACP recipients. I hope that Congress revisits the program with an eye to empowering providers and the Commission to prevent [abuse].

Statement of FCC Commissioner Nathan Simington Regarding the Affordable Connectivity Program Rules