IDG reports that "The U.S. Federal Communications Commission has voted to overhaul a decades-old system of telephone subsidies in rural areas, with the funding refocused on broadband deployment. The FCC's vote Thursday would transition the Universal Service Fund's (USF's) high-cost program, now subsidizing voice service, to a new Connect America Fund focused on broadband deployment to areas that don't yet have service. The FCC will cap the broadband fund at $4.5 billion a year, the current budget of the USF high-cost program, funded by a tax on telephone bills." That cap, says Reuters, is "the first budget constraint ever imposed on the program."
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