facebook linkedin twitter

FCC Ready to Fund $311 Million Broadband Deployment to 36 States

July 27, 2021 by Victoria Turner

The Federal Communications Commission announced yesterday that it is ready to release more than $311 million in funding for high-speed broadband deployment across 36 states through its Rural Digital Opportunity Fund. 

Working to clean up the RDOF “waste” such as winning bids to deploy in areas that are already served, FCC Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel added the agency is shifting gears to focus on the unserved areas.

The winning bids from the FCC’s Auction 904 were required to submit long-form applications by Jan. 29 and submit their required final financial statements – like letters of credit from an FCC-accepted bank and certification letters per state in which they won a bid – by Aug. 9. As of February, there were 417 long-term applicants, but the long-form applications are still being reviewed on a rolling basis and this number may change. 

The $311 million authorized, which Rosenworcel described as a “significant down payment on broadband deployment,” will go to those providers that have met all the requirements to be approved. 

“And for those applicants who are dragging their feet or can’t meet their obligations, follow the rules or we will disqualify you and move on,” she warned. 

Coinciding with the release of this first round of RDOF funding since the program’s 2020 adoption, the agency is slapping the wrists of those previous winning bidders who failed to deploy broadband to areas to which they had committed. The agency promised penalties and freeing up those defaulted bids for other providers. The FCC staff is continuously reviewing these long-form applicants for defaults. 

Each default bidder could be subject to a $3,000 base forfeiture fine per violation per census block group assigned in the winning bid, up to 15% of the default bidder’s total assigned funding. The long-form applicants were supposed to also provide the agency with initial audited financial statements by June 7, and those who did not meet this first deadline could be subject to a base fine of $50,000. These forfeiture penalties can be upwardly or downwardly adjusted per FCC guidelines. 

In its cleanup efforts, the FCC also sent letters to 197 winning bidders, giving them a chance to withdraw from well-served areas without penalty, while simultaneously rejecting deadline waiver requests for providers who did not put forth the good effort to gain the state opinion letters. 

Telecom

October 26, 2021
by Dan McCue
Biden Names Jessica Rosenworcel Permanent FCC Chair

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden made it official Tuesday, announcing he wants Jessica Rosenworcel, who has been acting FCC chair... Read More

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden made it official Tuesday, announcing he wants Jessica Rosenworcel, who has been acting FCC chair since January, to be his permanent head of the agency. If Rosenworcel is confirmed, she would be the first woman to formally serve as FCC chair.... Read More

October 22, 2021
by Victoria Turner
Advocates Call for National Privacy Policy at FTC Open Meeting

The Federal Trade Commission should work with the U.S. Congress on drafting a comprehensive federal privacy law, instead of using... Read More

The Federal Trade Commission should work with the U.S. Congress on drafting a comprehensive federal privacy law, instead of using its rulemaking authority to do industry-specific regulation, according to three privacy policy advocates from three separate think tanks on Thursday at the FTC's open meeting. “Rather... Read More

October 12, 2021
by Dan McCue
Boeing Close to Approval for Broadband Satellite Array

WASHINGTON -- The Federal Communications Commission is poised to consider an application from Boeing to launch and run an array... Read More

WASHINGTON -- The Federal Communications Commission is poised to consider an application from Boeing to launch and run an array of broadband satellites. Acting FCC chair Jessica Rosenworcel circulated a proposal for voting on Boeing’s application last week. Industry watchers have said the fact Rosenworcel went... Read More

October 7, 2021
by Victoria Turner
Broadband ‘Catnip’ to Both Political Parties, Industry Executive Says

WASHINGTON -- Both sides of the U.S. Congress are viewing high-speed broadband as essential. Now, the industry players will have... Read More

WASHINGTON -- Both sides of the U.S. Congress are viewing high-speed broadband as essential. Now, the industry players will have the challenge of reconfiguring a private business model to fit that of a utility, said Rhod Shaw, chairman of the Alpine Group, Wednesday.  The growing attention... Read More

October 7, 2021
by Tom Ramstack
Congress Looks to Broadband to Boost Telecommunications

WASHINGTON -- Disputes in Congress on how much tax money should be invested in infrastructure continued during a hearing Wednesday... Read More

WASHINGTON -- Disputes in Congress on how much tax money should be invested in infrastructure continued during a hearing Wednesday on expanding broadband telecommunications access. Broadband refers to data transmission over a wide range of frequencies through optical fiber, wireless radio and satellite signals. It is... Read More

September 23, 2021
by Victoria Turner
Infosys Developing Quantum Computing Capabilities on AWS

Amazon Web Services’ quantum computing service, Amazon Braket, is partnering with next-generation digital services consulting firm Infosys to develop quantum... Read More

Amazon Web Services’ quantum computing service, Amazon Braket, is partnering with next-generation digital services consulting firm Infosys to develop quantum computing capabilities for its Infosys Cobalt cloud offerings.  Amazon Braket provides the technology and research for scientists and developers to build quantum algorithms, test them on... Read More

News From The Well
scroll top