NTCA, NCTA — Similar Initials, Very Different Rural Broadband Support Suggestions

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NTCA – The Rural Broadband Association and NCTA – The Internet and Television Association, met with the FCC recently, and separately {of course), on broadband support issues

In its presentation and follow-up letter, NTCA stressed that the USF is not a grant program, but one that provides continuing support over time to help recover the costs of deploying broadband networks. NTCA also advocated the updating of existing USF contribution mechanisms by expanding the contribution base to include retail broadband access service revenues.

In contrast, NCTA, accompanied by Comcast, Charter Communications, and Cox Enterprises advocated that the Commission pause any new high cost support for any unserved or underserved areas. They also said that the FCC should be skeptical of requests by legacy carriers to receive high cost support for ongoing maintenance and operations, and opined that contribution reforms to sustain USF should require Congressional review.

We credit NTCA for their strong broadband advocacy on behalf of small carriers and their customers in the most difficult and costly-to-serve areas of our country and wonder why NCTA has such a short-sighted approach to broadband in all rural, poor, and isolated areas of America.

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