Remarks of FCC Commissioner Clyburn at the NARUC Winter Summit

Speaking about universal service fund (USF) programs -- high-cost and Lifeline --  and contribution reform ...

High-cost program: Concerning the Federal Communications Commission's upcoming reverse auctions, I firmly believe that states and localities can still take advantage of the process. It would involve money: a mix of state USF, discretionary funding from the statehouse, or some other source, that could be leveraged in the [Connect America Fund (CAF)] auction process. And while I may have lost many in this room with those suggestions, the potential benefits are significant, if a state or locality wraps this additional funding around the existing auction mechanism.

Lifeline program: I am dismayed at this Administration’s approach when it comes to dealing with the economically disadvantaged. When the FCC revoked broadband providers' authorizations without notice, it left thousands of customers out in the cold. 

Contribution reform: I think the winning approach could be a simple one: the infrastructure that is supported by the Fund, should be the infrastructure that is assessed by the Fund. It makes no sense to me, for grandma’s dial-tone service, and only grandma’s dial-tone service, to be undergirding the buildout of next-generation infrastructure.