FCC Works to Establish Nationwide Rural Broadband, Drafts Order for $20B Fund
The Federal Communications Commission is developing a possible solution to rural territories, including portions of north central Washington, lacking fiber broadband internet access. Our news partner, iFiberone, reported that FCC Chairman Ajit Pai shared a draft order Thursday that would establish a $20.4 billion Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF). The Fiber Broadband Association's President, Lisa Youngers, gave a nod of approval toward the fund, “The Fiber Broadband Association’s members applaud Chairman Pai’s draft order adopting rules for the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund. This $20 billion program will connect millions of unserved consumers to the economic, social, healthcare and educational opportunities in our digital world. What’s more, as proposed by the Chairman, this fund will build exponentially faster networks by prioritizing higher performance connectivity amongst competing bids. We thank the Chairman for this initiative to bridge the digital divide and encourage the Commission to adopt his draft at its meeting later in January." According to Fiber Broadband Association, the fund would raise the bar for rural broadband deployment by requiring faster speeds than a previous fund.