Gov performance

Four million households join Emergency Broadband program

Over four million households have enrolled in the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program, the nation’s largest broadband affordability program to date. The $3.2 billion subsidy program initiated by Congress provides a temporary $50 to $75 discount on eligible households’ internet bills during the duration of the pandemic. “We’ve made terrific progress," said Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel, "but the [Federal Communications Commission] remains committed to building on this initial momentum so we can connect as many families as possible and help those struggling to get online.” Since the p

Lifeline Program 2020 Program Evaluation

The key findings of this report reflect the need to establish a clearer connection between Federal Communications Commission policy and how Universal Service Administrative Company operationalizes this policy through an FCC-directed Lifeline program strategic plan. Currently no such document exists. This prescriptive document will significantly contribute to the resolution of many of the findings. Broadly, findings, observations, and recommendations span two main categories:

Emergency Broadband Benefit Program: From Here to Launch in 60 Days

On March 4, we got a tad bit more information about the timeline of the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program—at least for the companies that are interested in providing the discounted broadband services. Broadband internet access service providers that have previously participated in federal assistance programs (these companies are known in wonkspeak as eligible telecommunications carriers or ETCs), can begin to let USAC know if they will participate in the Emergency Broadband Benefit Progr

Investment in Broadband Infrastructure Can Create Cost Savings and Community Self-Empowerment

Building new broadband infrastructure is a big investment for any municipality. While the cost of that investment shouldn’t be overlooked, it’s equally important to consider the significant cost savings that can be reaped with publicly owned infrastructure. Many cities have slashed the cost of connecting their schools to broadband by opting to build their own infrastructure, instead of continuing to pay a private provider for connections. Portland (OR), for example, had been paying an incumbent provider $1,310 per month for  10 Mbps connections to schools.

How an Investigation of Fake FCC Comments Snared a Prominent DC Media Firm

Millions of records that the Federal Communications Commission’s top lawyer once fought to hold back from state law enforcement officials now serve as key evidence in a year-long probe into cases of Americans being impersonated during the agency’s latest net neutrality proceeding.

FCC's Inspector General Looks Into Changes That Benefited Sinclair

In April 2017, the chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, Ajit Pai, led the charge for his agency to approve rules allowing television broadcasters to greatly increase the number of stations they own.

Senators Call for Impartial Investigation into Potential Quid Pro Quo between Chairman Ajit Pai, Trump Administration, and Sinclair Broadcasting

Sens Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Tom Udall (D-NM), and 13 of their Senate colleagues are requesting the inspector general of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) open an investigation into the objectivity and impartiality of the FCC’s review of the proposed merger of Sinclair Broadcasting and Tribune Media.

2021 Reflections: Notes from FCC Chairwoman Rosenworcel

Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel reflected on the accomplishments of the agency in 2021. The chairwoman highlighted a number of programs, funding opportunities, auctions and new initiatives enacted by the FCC, including:

FCC Chairwoman Rosenworcel Responds to Members of Congress Regarding Small Business Speed Needs

Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel sent letters to 12 members of Congress on December 13, 2021, regarding the July 2021 Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on small business broadband speed needs. "I do not believe the FCC’s current speed benchmark for broadband, 25 megabits per second download and 3 megabits per second download, is adequate," said Chairwoman Rosenworcel. "As GAO points out, the FCC’s speed benchmark has remained at 25/3 Mbps since 2015, despite major changes in demand for broadband in the intervening years.

FCC Chairwoman Rosenworcel Responds to Rep Higgins on Broadband Data Collection

Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel responded to Rep Brian Higgins (D-NY)'s letter asking for a progress update on the agency's broadband data collection process. Rosenworcel's response noted the formation of the Broadband Data Task Force, progress on the new Broadband Data Collection systems and processes, work on the Broadband Serviceable Location Fabric, and the FCC's efforts to encourage people to use its Speed Test app as part of the agency's Measuring Broadband America program.