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Skip the page introduction.Universal Service Program for Low-Income Consumers

The federal universal service low-income program provides discounts on telephone installation and monthly telephone service to qualifying consumers. There are two programs available to qualified low-income consumers:

  • Lifeline provides discounts on basic monthly phone service (wireline or wireless) for qualified subscribers. These discounts can be up to $10.00 per month, depending on the state.

  • Link Up provides qualified subscribers with a one-time discount, up to a maximum of $30, off of the initial installation fee for one traditional, wireline phone service at the primary residence or the activation fee for one wireless phone service.

Additional discounts are available to qualified subscribers living on Tribal lands.

For more information on low-income support, visit www.universalservice.org/li


HEADLINES - 2012


  • Virgin Mobile USA, LP Public Notice: 1/23/2012,Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on Virgin Mobileís petition for forbearance from the service area definition requirement for eligible telecommunications carriers for the limited purpose of participating in the Lifeline program.
    Word PDF

HEADLINES - 2011


  • Telispire Forbearance Withdrawal Order: 12/16/2011,The Wireline Competition Bureau approves Telispire’s notice to withdraw its forbearance petition seeking facilities based forbearance on behalf of MVNOs. 
    Word PDF

  • Chairman Genachowski Lifeline Letter: 12/12/2011, On December 12, 2011, Chairman Genachowski sent a letter to the Commissioners of each state public utilities / public service commission, urging them to join the FCC in reforming the Lifeline program by increasing their efforts to eliminate waste, fraud, and abuse.
    PDF

  • Lifeline Duplicate Resolution Process Guidance Letter: 12/6/2011, The Wireline Competition Bureau releases a guidance letter directing the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) to issue a request for proposals (RFP) by January 16, 2012, to procure customer care functionalities for the Lifeline Duplicate Resolution Process so that it can continue with targeted IDVs in select states when directed by the Wireline Competition Bureau.
    Word PDF

  • Enforcement Advisory: 12/5/2011, On December 5, 2011, the Commissionís Enforcement Bureau issued an Enforcement Advisory reminding Lifeline telephone service providers of the prohibition in the Commissionís rules against signing up for Lifeline service any consumer who is already enrolled in the program.
    Word PDF

  • USF/ICC Transformation Public Notice: 12/2/2011, The Wireline Competition Bureau provides notice that it is releasing data and maps relevant to the USF/ICC Transformation Proceeding.
    Word PDF

  • USF/ICC Transformation Order & FNPRM: 11/18/2011, In this order, the Commission comprehensively reforms and modernizes the universal service and intercarrier compensation systems to ensure that robust, affordable voice and broadband service, both fixed and mobile, are available to Americans throughout the nation.
    Word PDF

  • CAL Communications , Inc. Public Notice: 11/15/2011, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a compliance plan by CAL Communications detailing the company's adherence to conditions imposed in the CAL Communications Forbearance Order for the provision of Lifeline service.
    Word PDF

  • PlatinumTel Communications, LLC Public Notice: 11/15/2011, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a compliance plan filed by PlatinumTel detailing the company's adherence to conditions imposed in the PlatinumTel Forbearance Order for the provision of Lifeline service.
    Word PDF

  • Cintex Wireless, LLC Public Notice: 10/28/2011, WCB seeks comment Cintex Wireless, LLC's petition for limited ETC designation for the provision of Lifeline and Link Up support in Alabama,Connecticut,Delaware,District of Columbia,Florida,New Hampshire,New York,North Carolina, Tennessee and Virgina.
    Word PDF

  • NE Colorado Cellular, d/b/a Viaero Wireless Public Notice: 10/27/2011, Wireline Competition Bureau initiates a proceeding to consider a petition by NE Colorado Cellular, d/b/a Viaero Wireless seeking the Commission's agreement in redefining the service area of a rural telephone companies in Kansas.
    Word PDF

  • NTCH's Compliance Plan Public Notice: 10/25/2011, Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a compliance plan filed by NTCH detailing the companyís adherence to conditions imposed in the NTCH Forbearance Order for the provision of Lifeline service.
    Word PDF

  • Recellular's Compliance Plan Public Notice: 10/25/2011, Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a compliance plan filed by ReCellular detailing the companyís adherence to conditions imposed in the ReCellular Forbearance Order for the provision of Lifeline service.
    Word PDF

  • i-wireless, LLC Order: 10/21/2011, Wireline Competition Bureau approves i-wireless's Compliance Plan detailing the company's adherence to conditions imposed in i-wireless's Forbearance Order for the provision of Lifeline service.
    Word PDF

  • Low Income Program Disbursement Public Notice: 10/20/2011, The Wireline Competition Bureau announced the publication in the Federal Register of the Bureauís September 23, 2011 public notice seeking comment on a proposal for disbursing USF low income support based on actual claims as opposed to projected claims for support.
    Word PDF

  • Cricket Communications, Inc. Public Notice: 10/5/2011, Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a compliance plan filed by Cricket Communications for implementation of conditions for forbearance from the service area conformance requirement.
    Word PDF

  • PlatinumTel, LLC Order: 9/23/2011, The Commission grants PlatinumTel, CAL Communications and ReCellular. forbearance from the facilities requirement of sec 214(e)(1)(A) of the Act and sec 54.201(d), (i) of the Commissionís rules for eligibility to be designated a limited ETC for Lifeline program.
    Word PDF

  • Low Income Disbursement Public Notice: 9/23/2011, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a USAC proposal for disbursing USF low-income support based on ETCís actual monthly support claims rather than projected monthly support claims.
    Word PDF

  • Budget Prepay, Inc. Public Notice: 9/20/2011, Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on Budget PrePayís petition for ETC designation in Florida for the limited purpose of offering Lifeline and Link-Up service.
    Word PDF

  • Airvoice Wireless, LLC Public Notice: 9/20/2011, Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition for forbearance from the facilities requirement for the purpose of participating in the Lifeline program filed by Airvoice.
    Word PDF

  • PlantinumTel Communications, LLC Public Notice: 9/20/2011, Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on PlatinumTelís petitions for limited ETC designation for the purpose of Lifeline and Link Up services in nine states and the District of Columbia.
    Word PDF

  • NTCH, Inc. and Cricket Communications, Inc. Order: 9/16/2011, In this order, we address two petitions for forbearance, one filed by Cricket Communications, Inc. (Cricket) and one filed by NTCH, Inc. and its affiliated operating entity NTCH-West Tenn, Inc. (collectively, NTCH), pursuant to section 10 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended (the Act). These petitions seek forbearance from the requirement that the service area of a competitive eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) conform to the service area of any rural telephone company serving the same area, for the limited purpose of becoming designated as Lifeline-only ETCs.
    Word PDF

  • Lifeline and Link Up Protective Order: 8/25/2011, In the Lifeline and Link Up Reform and Modernization Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, the Commission proposed rules to reform and modernize the low income support mechanism of the universal service fund.
    Word PDF

  • Lifeline/Link Up Public Notice: 8/5/2011, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks additional targeted comment on issues raised in the Commission's Lifeline/Link Up Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.
    Word PDF

  • Universal Service Intercarrier Compensation Transormation Public Notice: 8/3/2011, In response to the USF/ICC Transformation NPRM, several parties have offered specific proposals for reform. We seek comment on how these proposals comport with the Commissionís articulated objectives and statutory requirements. We invite comment on specific aspects of the proposals and on additional issues that are not fully developed in the record.
    Word PDF

  • TracFone Wireless, Inc. Order: 8/2/2011, In this order, we dismiss without prejudice a request filed by the Adams County E-911 Emergency Telephone Service Authority, the Arapahoe County E-911 Emergency Communication Service Authority, and the Jefferson County Emergency Communications Authority (collectively, the ďColorado 911 AuthoritiesĒ) seeking Commission action pursuant to section 1.41 of the Commissionís rules. The Colorado 911 Authorities request that the Commission reject TracFone Wireless Inc.ís (TracFone) self-certification that it is in compliance with basic 911 and enhanced 911 (E911) requirements in the state of Colorado and compel TracFone to comply with Colorado law relating to 911 funding.
    Word PDF

  • American Broadband and Telecommunications Public Notice: 7/26/2011, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on the proposed compliance plan filed by American Broadband & Telecommunications (American Broadband). American Broadband seeks permission from the Federal Communications Commission (Commission) to become a Lifeline-only eligible telecommunications carriers (ETC) and has pending a petition seeking forbearance from the requirement that an ETC provides service, at least in part, over its own facilities. In granting similar forbearance petitions in the past, the Commission has required carriers to submit for approval a proposed compliance plan demonstrating how the carrier intended to satisfy conditions imposed by the Commissionís grant of forbearance for Lifeline-only support. In this case, although American Broadbandís forbearance petition remains pending, American Broadband separately submitted a proposed compliance plan intended to satisfy conditions imposed by the Commission on other non-facilities based carriers when granting similar forbearance requests.
    Word PDF

  • I-Wireless, LLC Public Notice: 7/5/2011, WCB seeks comment on i-wireless, LLC.ís petition for ETC designation in Florida for the limited purpose of participating in the Lifeline program.
    Word PDF

  • CAL Communications, Inc. Order: 6/27/2011, In this order, the Wireline Competition Bureau extends by 90 days the date by which the petition requesting forbearance filed by CAL Communications, Inc shall be deemed granted in the absence of a Commission decision that the petition fails to meet the standards for forbearance.
    Word PDF

  • Standing Rock Telecommuncations, Inc. Memorandum Opinion and Order on Reconsideration: 6/22/2011, In this order, we designate Standing Rock Telecommunications, Inc. (Standing Rock), a Tribally owned telecommunications carrier, as an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) throughout the entire Standing Rock Sioux Reservation (Reservation), effective immediately.
    Word PDF

  • Nexus Communications, Inc. Public Notice: 6/22/2011, WCB seeks comment on Nexus Communications, Inc.ís petition for limited ETC designation for the purpose of participating in the Lifeline and Link Up programs.
    Word PDF

  • Lifeline and Link Up Report and Order (Duplicative Payment Order): 6/21/2011, This order takes action to address potential waste in the universal service Lifeline program by adopting near-term rules aimed at ensuring that qualified low income consumers receive no more than a single Lifeline benefit.
    Word PDF

  • Terracom, Inc. Public Notice: 6/20/2011, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed on June 13, 2011, by TerraCom, Inc (TerraCom). TerraCom seeks designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier for the limited purpose of offering Lifeline and Link-Up services to end-user customers in Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.
    Word PDF

  • Tag Mobile, LLC. Public Notice: 6/9/2011, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed on June 7, 2011, by TAG Mobile, LLC (TAG). TAG seeks designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier for the limited purpose of offering Lifeline and Link-Up services to end-user customers in Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.
    Word PDF

  • Total Call Mobile, Inc. Public Notice: 5/26/2011, In this public notice, Total Call Mobile Inc. seeks forbearance from the facilities requirement to be designated an ETC for the limited purpose of Lifeline support.
    Word PDF

  • Cricket Forbearance 90 Day Extension: 5/16/2011, In this order, pursuant to section 10(c) of the Communications Act, we extend by 90 days the date by which the petition requesting forbearance filed by Cricket Communications, Inc. shall be deemed granted in the absence of a Commission decision that the petition fails to meet the standards for forbearance under section 10(a) of the Act.
    Word PDF

  • Western Wireless Order: 5/12/2011, The Wireline Competition Bureau approves the requests of Western Wireless, LLC, successor by merger of Western Wireless Corporation d/b/a Verizon Wireless (Western Wireless), to relinquish its eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) designations in the state of Wyoming and on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota.
    Word PDF

  • AT&T Mobility Order: 5/12/2011, The Wireline Competition Bureau addresses a petition filed by AT&T pursuant to section 214(e)(6) of the Communications Act in which AT&T requests transfer of the eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) designation held by Western Wireless, LLC d/b/a Alltel for service offered to Tribal members on the Pine Ridge Reservation in the state of South Dakota and designation as an ETC. The Bureau grants in part AT&T Mobilityís petition, finding that AT&T meets the eligibility requirements of section 214(e)(1) of the Act and the Commissionís rules to be designated as an ETC.
    Word PDF

  • Budget Prepay, Inc. Public Notice: 5/2/11, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on nine petitions filed by Budget PrePay, Inc. (Budget PrePay) on April 18, 2011. Budget PrePay seeks designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier for the limited purpose of offering Lifeline and Link-Up services to end-user customers in Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Nexus Communications, Inc. Public Notice: 5/2/11,The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a Nexus Communications, Inc. (Nexus) petition filed on April 5, 2011. Nexus seeks designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier for the limited purpose of offering Lifeline and Link-Up services in the non-rural areas of Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Annual Lifeline Verification Surveys and Certifications Public Notice: 4/28/11, This public notice serves as a reminder that an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) in a state with its own state-based low-income program must submit a certification, signed by an officer of the company, to the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) by August 31, 2011, and ensure that USAC receives the certification by that date, attesting that the ETC has complied with the state verification procedures.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Millennium 2000, Inc. Public Notice: 4/27/11, Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed on April 12, 2011 by Millennium 2000, Inc. (Millennium 2000), a mobile virtual network operator, for forbearance from the requirement in section 214(e)(1)(A) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, that eligible telecommunications carriers (ETCs) provide service, at least in part, over their own facilities.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • American Broadband and Telecommunications Public Notice: 4/7/11, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed on February 25, 2011, by American Broadband & Telecommunications for forbearance from the requirement that eligible telecommunications carriers provide service, at least in part, over their own facilities.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Universal Service Fund/Intercarrier Compensation Reform Workshop Public Notice: 3/30/11, The Wireline Competition Bureau announces the second in a series of workshops on universal service and intercarrier compensation reform. This workshop, to be held April 27, 2011, in Washington D.C., will focus on universal service reform proposals, including Phase One of the Connect America Fund.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Line Up, LLC Public Notice: 3/30/11, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on the petition of Line-Up, LLC for designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier under section 214(e)(6) of the Act.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Airvoice Wireless LLC Withdrawal Order: 3/24/11, In this order the Bureau grants Airvoiceís request to withdraw its forbearance petition that sought forbearance from section 214(e)(1)(A) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, in order to seek designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) for the sole purpose of participating in the universal service fund Lifeline program.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • NTCH, Inc. Public Notice: 3/16/11, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed by NTCH, Inc. on behalf of itself and its affiliate WGH Communications, Inc. (collectively, NTCH).
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • OneLink Wireless, Inc. Public Notice: 3/8/11, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed by OneLink Wireless, Inc. (OneLink) seeking designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier for the limited purpose of offering Lifeline and Link-Up services to end-user customers in Alabama, New York, North Carolina and Virginia.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Lifeline and Link Reform and Modernization NPRM: 3/4/11, This NPRM takes steps to comprehensively reform and modernize the Lifeline/Link Up program for 21st century communications needs building on recommendations of the Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service, the Government Accountability Office, and the National Broadband Plan. The reforms will set the program on a firmer footing, establishing greater accountability and ensuring that millions of low-income Americans continue to receive affordable phone service while using savings from reforms to fund pilot programs for broadband.
    NPRM: Word | PDF

  • Connect America Fund NPRM: 2/9/11, In this NPRM, the Commission proposes to transform the high-cost portion of the Universal Service Fund to support broadband, as well as to reform the intercarrier compensation system.
    NPRM: Word | PDF

  • WCB Guidance Letter: 1/21/11, The Wireline Competition Bureau provides guidance to USAC on duplicate claims for Lifeline support.
    Letter: Word | PDF

  • TracFone Order: 1/14/11, This order denies a petition for waiver filed by TracFone seeking to modify the compliance plan condition that it require each of its Lifeline customers to self-certify annually that they are the head of their household and receive Lifeline-supported service only from TracFone.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Boomerang Wireless, LLC Public Notice: 1/6/11, Boomerang Wireless, LLC is seeking designation as an ETC for the limited purpose of participating in the universal service low-income Lifeline program.
    Order: Word | PDF

HEADLINES - 2010


  • Virgin Mobile USA, LP Order: 12/29/10, WCB Conditionally Grants Virgin Mobile ETC Designation in Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, New Hampshire, and the District of Columbia.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • American Public Communications Council Public Notice: 12/16/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition for interim relief and a petition for rulemaking filed on December 6, 2010, by American Public Communications Council (APCC).
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Tracfone Public Notice: 12/8/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed on December 1, 2010, by TracFone Wireless, Inc. (TracFone) for a declaratory ruling.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • AirVoice Wireless, LLC Public Notice: 12/8/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed on December 1, 2010, by AirVoice Wireless, LLC (AirVoice) for forbearance from the requirement that eligible telecommunications carriers (ETCs) provide service, at least in part, over their own facilities.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • ReCellular, Inc Public Notice: 10/20/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed by ReCellular, Inc. for forbearance from the requirement that eligible telecommunications carriers provide service, at least in part, over their own facilities.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Conextion Wireless Order: 10/1/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on nine petitions filed on September 22, 2010, by GreatCall, Inc. (GreatCall).In this order, we grant in part and deny in part a petition for forbearance filed by Conexions, LLC d/b/a Conexion Wireless (Conexions).Conexions, a wireless reseller, requested that the Commission forbear from the requirement that carriers designated as eligible telecommunications carriers (ETCs) for purposes of federal universal service support provide services, at least in part, over their own facilities.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Greatcall, Inc. Public Notice: 10/1/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on nine petitions filed on September 22, 2010, by GreatCall, Inc. (GreatCall).
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • I-Wireless, LLC Public Notice: 9/2/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed by i-wireless, LLC (i-wireless) on August 25, 2010. In the petition, i-wireless seeks designation as a limited eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) to participate in the Commissionís Lifeline program in the States of Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, New Hampshire, North Carolina, New York, Tennessee, the Commonwealth of Virginia, and the District of Columbia.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Plans of Head Start Telecom, Inc., Consumer Cellular, Inc., and Line Up, LLC Public Notice: 8/31/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on the compliance plans recently filed by Head Start Telecom, Inc., Consumer Cellular, Inc., and Line Up, LLC. These compliance plans are intended to satisfy the conditions imposed by the Commission when it granted limited forbearance from the requirement that carriers provide services, at least in part, over their own facilities in order to be designated an eligible telecommunications carrier.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Allied Wireless Communications Corporation Order: 8/30/10, In this order, the Bureau grants the petition of Allied Wireless Communications Corporation (AWCC) to be designated as an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) in the state of North Carolina. We find that AWCC meets the eligibility requirements of section 214(e)(6) of the Communications Act and the Commissionís rules to be designated as an ETC in North Carolina.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Standing Rock Telecommunications, Inc. Public Notice: 8/24/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on whether Standing Rock Telecommunications, Inc. should be designated as an Eligible Telecommunications Carrier in partial rural wire centers so that it can serve the entire Standing Rock Sioux Reservation.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Standing Rock Telecommunications, Inc. Memorandum Opinion and Order: 8/24/10, In this order, the Wireline Competition Bureau designates Standing Rock Telecommunications, Inc. (Standing Rock), a wireless carrier owned and operated by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, as an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) in certain wire centers within the boundaries of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation (Standing Rock Reservation). The Bureau defers action on Standing Rockís request to redefine and serve partial rural wire centers on the Reservation.
    Memorandum Opinion and Order: Word | PDF

  • AT&T Mobility Public Notice: 8/11/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed July 30, 2010, by AT&T, Inc., on behalf of its affiliate, AT&T Mobility. AT&T Mobility seeks to have the Bureau transfer to it the Eligible Telecommunications Carrier (ETC) designation held by WWC LLC d/b/a Alltel (Alltel) for services offered to Tribal members on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. AT&T Mobility further requests that the effective date of an ETC grant be retroactive to June 22, 2010, the closing date of the AT&T/Verizon Wireless transaction.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Head Start, Consumer Cellular, Midwestern Telecom Inc., Line Up Order: 7/30/10, FCC Conditionally Grants Forbearance Requests for Lifeline Universal Service Support.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Platinumtel Communications, LLC Public Notice: 7/13/10, Sought comment on PlatinumTel Communications, LLC petition for forbearance from eligible telecommunications carrier facilities requirement.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • i-wireless, LLC Order: 6/25/10, FCC Conditionally Grants i-wireless Forbearance Request for Lifeline Universal Service Support.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Cricket Communication Inc. Public Notice: 6/25/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed on June 21, 2010, by Cricket Communications, Inc. (Cricket), a wireless telecommunications carrier.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Conexions, LLC Order: 6/22/10, In this order, WCB extends from July 8, 2010 to October 6, 2010 the statutory deadline for acting on a petition for forbearance filed by Conexions, which requests forbearance from the Actís facilities requirement for the limited purpose of participating in the universal service Lifeline program.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Low-Income Pilot Program Public Notice: 6/21/10, Wireline Competition Bureau Announces Remote Participation Details for June 23, 2010 Low-Income Pilot Program Roundtable Discussion.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Lifeline and Link-Up Eligibility, Verification and Outreach Public Notice: 6/15/10, Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service Seeks Comment on Lifeline and Link-Up Eligibility, Verification, and Outreach Issues Referred to Joint Board.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • I-Wireless Forbearance Proceeding Public Notice: 6/14/10, WCB Announces Quiet Period for I-Wireless Forbearance Proceeding.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Broadband Pilot Programs For Low Income Consumers Public Notice: 6/8/10, June 23, 2010, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (eastern daylight time), the Wireline Competition Bureau will host a roundtable discussion in the Commission Meeting Room to enable interested parties to discuss the design of pilot programs that would provide subsidies for broadband access to low-income consumers.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Line Up, LLC Petition for Forbearance Public Notice: 6/7/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed on May 27, 2010, by Line Up, LLC (Line Up) for forbearance from the requirement in section 214(e)(1)(A) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, that eligible telecommunications carriers (ETCs) provide service, at least in part, over their own facilities. Line Up seeks forbearance to enable it to be designated an ETC for purposes of receiving universal service low-income support under the Lifeline program.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Lifeline Verification Surveys And Ceritifications Public Notice: 6/7/10, This public notice serves as a reminder that an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) in a state with its own state-based low-income program must submit a certification, signed by an officer of the company, to the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) by August 31, 2010, and ensure that USAC receives the certification by that date, attesting that the ETC has complied with the state verification procedures. In addition, this public notice reminds all ETCs in federal default states to submit their annual Lifeline verification survey results to USAC and ensure that these results are received by USAC by August 31, 2010.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Consumer Cellular ETC Forbearance Deadline Extension Order: 6/4/10, In this order, WCB extends from June 30, 2010, to September 28, 2010, the statutory deadline for acting on a petition for forbearance filed by Consumer Cellular. The underlying petition for forbearance is one of the me-too petitions requesting forbearance from the Actís facilities requirement for the limited purpose of participating in the Commissionís low income program.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Cellco Partnership d/b/a Verizon Wireless Order: 5/28/10, In this order, WCB approves the request of Cellco Partnership d/b/a Verizon Wireless and its affiliates (Cellco) for pro forma amendment of the eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) designations currently held by Cellco in the name of ALLTEL Communications, Inc. and its affiliated legal entities (Alltel) in Virginia and North Carolina, as well as ETC designations held by both Alltel and RCC Holdings, Inc. in Alabama. Under this order, the designated service areas of Alltel and RCC would reflect Cellco as the ETC designated entity. This order in does not affect the universal service reductions merger conditions.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Arkansas Preemption Dismissal Order: 5/18/10, In this order, we dismiss as moot a petition filed by Alltel Communications, Inc. (Alltel) seeking a declaratory ruling preempting section 5(d)(1) of the Arkansas Telecommunications Regulatory Act of 1997.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Puerto Rico Low Income Public Notice: 5/11/10, The Bureau announces that the comment and reply comment deadlines for the Puerto Rico Order and Second NPRM will be June 7, 2010 and June 21, 2010, respectively.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Low Income Joint Board Referral Order: 5/4/10, In this Order, we ask the Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service (Joint Board) to review the Commissionís eligibility, verification, and outreach rules for the Lifeline and Link Up universal service programs, which currently provide discounts on telephone service for low-income customers.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • NEP Cellcorp ETC Designation Order: 4/29/10, In this order, WCB grants the request of NEP Cellcorp, Inc. to amend its ETC designation in Pennsylvania to include the rural study area of North-Eastern Pennsylvania Telephone Company.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Head Start Forbearance Extension Order: 4/29/10, In this order, WCB extends from May 15, 2010, to August 13, 2010, the statutory deadline for acting on a petition for forbearance filed by Head Start. The underlying petition for forbearance is one of the me-too petitions requesting forbearance from the Actís facilities requirement for the limited purpose of participating in the Commissionís Lifeline universal service program.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • US Cellular Tennessee ETC Amendment Order: 4/27/10, In this order, WCB grants the request of United States Cellular Corporation to amend its ETC designation in the state of Tennessee.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Qwest II Remand Order and MO&O: 4/16/10, In the Order on Remand, the Commission responds to the Tenth Circuit on high-cost universal service support for non-rural carriers. In the Memorandum Opinion and Order, the Commission determines that supplemental high-cost support is required under the current non-rural high-cost support mechanism to achieve reasonably comparable rates in Wyoming.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Hurricane Katrina Lifeline Audits Public Notice: 3/31/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on three requests for review of certain of certain Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) low-income support audit findings against Cingular Wireless (Cingular), T-Mobile USA, Inc. (T-Mobile), and TracFone Wireless, Inc. (TracFone). In each case, USAC found that the carrier failed to comply with the documentation retention requirements of the Commission's Hurricane Katrina Order.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Midwestern Telecommunications Forbearance Public Notice: 3/30/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed on March 16, 2010, by Midwestern Telecommunications, Inc. (Midwestern) for forbearance from the requirement in section 214(e)(1)(A) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, that eligible telecommunications carriers (ETCs) provide service, at least in part, over their own facilities. Midwestern seeks forbearance to enable it to be designated an ETC for purposes of receiving universal service low-income support under the Lifeline and Link Up programs.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • NTCH ETC and Forbearance Petitions Public Notice: 3/15/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a two petitions filed on March 5, 2010, by NTCH, Inc. (NTCH), a provider of commercial mobile radio services. NTCH seeks designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) for certain areas in Alabama and Tennessee. NTCH seeks ETC designation for the limited purpose of participating in the universal service low-income Lifeline program and does not request ETC designation to receive universal service high-cost support. In a separate petition, NTCH seeks forbearance from the definition of service area contained in section 214(e)(5) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and section 54.207(b) of the Commissionís rules so that it can be designated an ETC for the limited purposes of participating in the Lifeline program.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Virgin Mobile Petition to Modify Compliance Plan Public Notice: 3/15/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau (Bureau) seeks comment on the petition filed on March 4, 2010, by Virgin Mobile USA, L.P. (Virgin Mobile). On October 29, 2009, the Bureau approved Virgin Mobileís plan for complying with the conditions imposed by the Commission in granting Virgin Mobileís request to forbear from the facilities ownership requirement of section 214(e)(1)(A) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended. Grant of this forbearance allowed Virgin Mobile to seek designation as a limited eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) for the purpose of providing universal service low-income support through the Lifeline program. Virgin Mobile now seeks to supplement its compliance plan with two additional methods by which it will satisfy the requirement that its Lifeline customers self-certify before receiving service that they are the head of their household and only receive Lifeline-supported service from Virgin Mobile.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • USAC Form 497 Line 9 Letter Public Notice: 3/10/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on USACís February 23, 2010 letter asking: (1) what recovery action, if any, USAC should take against an ETC that has failed to pro-rate support claims for partial-month Lifeline customers; and (2) whether ETCs may use Line 9 of FCC Form 497 for any purpose other than to report the amount of support attributed to partial-month Lifeline customers.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Colorado 911 Public Notice: 3/1/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed by the Adams County E-911 Emergency Telephone Service Authority, the Arapahoe County E-911 Emergency Communication Service Authority, and the Jefferson County Emergency Communications Authority (collectively, the Colorado 911 Authorities).
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Alltel Audit Public Notice Extension : 2/17/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau grants a one-week extension of the deadline for filing reply comments in response to the Alltel Audit Public Notice, DA 09-2639 (rel. Dec. 30, 2009). Reply comments must be filed on or before February 23, 2010. Parties must comply with all other procedures and filing requirements announced in the Alltel Audit Public Notice.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Lifeline Declaratory Ruling Order : 2/2/10, In this order, we address four petitions for waiver of section 54.410 of the Commissionís rules and six requests for a declaratory ruling concerning the Commissionís Lifeline certification and verification requirements. We grant the requests for waiver seeking an extension of the June 22, 2005, deadline to submit sample Lifeline verification data in the US Cellular Washington Petition, the ADT Petition, and the VA Cellular Petition. We also grant the Petitionersí requests for a declaratory ruling and conclude that when a state commission mandates Lifeline support, but does not impose certification and verification requirements on certain carriers within the state, the affected carriers must follow federal default criteria for certification and verification purposes. Finally, we grant the requests filed by Wisconsin RSA #4 and US Cellular Wisconsin to withdraw their petitions.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Virgin Mobile ETC PN: 1/28/10, WCB seeks comment on a petition filed by Virgin Mobile USA, L.P. (Virgin Mobile), a provider of commercial mobile radio services. Virgin Mobile seeks designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) in the state of Alabama. Virgin Mobile seeks ETC designation for the limited purpose of participating in the universal service low-income Lifeline program and does not request ETC designation to receive universal service high-cost support.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • PEMA TracFone Opposition Withdrawal Order: 1/28/10, In this order, WCB grants the request filed by PEMA to withdraw its petition to reject TracFoneís self-certification that TracFone is in full compliance with applicable Pennsylvania 911 and E-911 obligations.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Standing Rock Telecom ETC PN: 1/19/10, WCB seeks comment on a petition filed by Standing Rock Telecommunications, Inc. (SRTI), a tribal-government owned wireless carrier. SRTI seeks designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier for a service area coterminous with the existing rural study areas within the external boundaries of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in South Dakota and North Dakota.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • CenturyTel of Eagle Order: 1/12/10, TAPD grants the request of CenturyTel of Eagle to withdraw its application for review. On August 1, 2002, the Colorado Public Utilities Commission petitioned the Commission for agreement with its proposed redefinition of the service area of CenturyTel of Eagle. On November 25, 2002, that redefinition petition was deemed approved under Commission rule 54.207(c)(2)(ii). CenturyTel filed an application for review arguing that the Commissionís deemed-approved process violates the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, and that the redefinition of its service area was not in the public interest. On October 20, 2009, CenturyTel filed a request for withdrawal of its application for review.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Cricket ETC Designation Petition: 1/12/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed by Cricket Communications, Inc. (Cricket), a provider of commercial mobile radio services. Cricket seeks designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) for certain counties in New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and Virginia as well as in the District of Columbia. Cricket seeks ETC designation for the limited purpose of participating in the universal service low-income Lifeline and Link-Up programs and does not request ETC designation to receive universal service high-cost support. Please note: Cricket is a facilities-based ETC and thus does not require forbearance before being designated an ETC.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Consumer Cellular ETC Designation Petition: 1/12/10, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed by Consumer Cellular, Inc. (Consumer Cellular), a reseller of commercial mobile radio services. Consumer Cellular seeks designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) for certain counties in Connecticut, New York, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia. Consumer Cellular seeks ETC designation for the limited purpose of participating in the universal service low-income Lifeline program and does not request ETC designation to receive high-cost universal service support. Please note: Consumer Cellular has a petition pending before the Commission seeking forbearance from the facilities-based ETC requirement; this ETC designation petition assumes that the Commission will grant that petition.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

HEADLINES - 2009


  • Alltel Lifeline Audit PN: 12/30/09, In this Public Notice, the Commission seeks comment on the Verizon/Alltel Management Trustís request for review of the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) low-income support audit findings that the Verizon/Alltel Management Trust: (1) lacked effective procedures for excluding duplicate claims for universal service low-income support under the Lifeline program from a single address; (2) claimed Tier 4 Lifeline support for subscribers not residing on Tribal lands and failed to provide Tier 4 Lifeline support to eligible households on Tribal lands; (3) sought Lifeline reimbursement for subscribers claimed on other carriersí FCC Forms 497; and (4) claimed Lifeline support for subscribers on Tribal lands who received a rate plan that included toll-free calling.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Cellco/Verizon ETC PN: 12/30/09, WCB seeks comment on the Cellco Partnership d/b/a Verizon Wireless requests to amend the eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) designations currently held by Alltel in Alabama, North Carolina, and Virginia (and also ETC designations held by RCC Holdings in Virginia). Under the proposed amendment, Alltelís and RCCís ETC designations would reflect Cellco as the designated entity.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • TracFone Wireless, Inc.: 10/21/09, TracFone ďOne-Per-HouseholdĒ Letter: The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a letter from TracFone Wireless, Inc., which (1) asks the Commission to clarify whether its ruling that carriers can receive universal service Lifeline support for a single telephone line in an eligible consumerís principal residence is intended to limit the availability of Lifeline-supported service to only one qualified low-income resident per homeless shelter; and (2) requests guidance on how eligible telecommunications carriers (ETCs) may enroll residents of shelters in their Lifeline programs without risking violation of the ďone-per-householdĒ rule. WCB also seeks comment on the effects of the one-per-household rule for Lifeline support in the context of other types of group living facilities, and on whether and how ETCs that provide Lifeline-supported service to homeless individuals who do not use shelters may comply with the one-per-household rule. Comments are due November 20 , 2009 and reply comments are due December 7, 2009.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Lifeline Verification & Certification: 8/10/09, Wireline Competition Bureau reminds ETCs of the August 31, 2009 deadline for their submission of annual Lifeline verification surveys and certifications and on August 31 of each subsequent year thereafter, attesting that the ETC has complied with the state verification procedures.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • TracFone Lifeline Petition to Modify Lifeline Head of Household: The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a TracFone petition to modify a condition (imposed by the Commissionís designation of TracFone) that TracFone must require each of its Lifeline customers to annually self-certify that they are the head of their household and receive Lifeline-supported service only from TracFone. Specifically, TracFone requests that it be allowed to verify annually that its Lifeline customers are heads of households and receive Lifeline-supported service only from TracFone through use of a statistically valid sample of those customers. Comments are due July 6, 2009 and reply comments are due July 20, 2009.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • TracFone Lifeline Tier 1 Petition: The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed by TracFone in which TracFone requests that it be allowed to receive Tier One Lifeline support in the amount of $6.50 per month per Lifeline customer in all service areas where it operates as en eligible telecommunications carrier, provided that TracFone: (1) passes through the full amount of its federal Lifeline support to its Lifeline customers; and (2) provides each of its Lifeline customers with an additional monthly Lifeline benefit of $3.50. This petition for waiver seeks the same relief that TracFone is seeking in a petition for rulemaking that it recently filed. Comments are due July 6, 2009 and reply comments are due July 20, 2009.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Head Start ETC Forbearance Petition: The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on Head Start's petition for forbearance from the eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) facilities requirement for designation as a limited ETC eligible for low-income support. Comments are due July 6, 2009 and reply comments are due July 20, 2009.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • i-wireless ETC Forbearance Petition: The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on i-wireless's petition for forbearance from the eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) facilities requirement for designation as a limited ETC eligible for low-income support. Comments are due July 6, 2009 and reply comments are due July 20, 2009.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • AT&T Lifeline Audit Petition: The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on AT&Tís petition regarding USACís Lifeline audit of AT&T. In its petition, AT&T seeks review of USACís findings that: (1) USAC should recover toll limitation service (TLS) support from AT&T because AT&T cannot supply documentation detailing its incremental cost of providing TLS to its Lifeline customers; (2) AT&T was required to advertise to its Lifeline customers toll blocking and all other services supported by federal universal service support mechanisms; and (3) AT&T was required to populate Line 9 of FCC Form 497 (the Lifeline and Link-Up Worksheet) with pro-rata dollars attributable to Lifeline subscribers that entered or exited the Lifeline program mid-month. Comments are due July 6, 2009 and reply comments are due July 20, 2009.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Smith Bagley, Inc.: 5/4/09, The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed by Smith Bagley seeking an increase to Tier Four of the Universal Service Low-Income Program from $25 per month to $30 per month. Comments on the petition are due June 3, 2009 and reply comments are due June 18, 2009.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • TracFone Wireless, Inc. Request for Waiver of Section 54.418 of the Commissionís Rules: 4/10/09, Granted a request from TracFone Wireless, Inc. for a conditional waiver of section 54.418 of the Commission's rules, which requires ETCs to notify their Lifeline and Link-Up customers about the DTV transition .
    Order: Word | PDF

  • Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency TracFone Certification Petition: 3/30/09, The The Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on a petition filed by the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency asking the Commission to reject TracFone Wireless, Inc.'s certification of compliance with all Pennsylvania 911 and E911 obligations. Comments on the petition are due April 29, 2009 and reply comments are due May 14, 2009.
    Public Notice: Word | PDF

  • Virgin Mobile Conditional Forbearance and Lifeline ETC Order: 3/5/09, The Commission conditionally granted a petition filed by Virgin Mobile USA, L.P. (Virgin Mobile) seeking forbearance from the requirement that a carrier designated as an eligible telecommunications carrier (ETC) provide services, at least in part, over its own facilities. The Commission granted Virgin Mobile forbearance for ETC designation for Lifeline universal service support only. The Commission also conditionally designated Virgin Mobile an ETC for Lifeline support only in New York, Virginia, North Carolina, and Tennessee.
    Order: Word | PDF

  • TracFone PSAP Forbearance Condition Modification Order: 3/5/09, The Commission modified a forbearance condition imposed on TracFone Wireless, Inc. as a requirement that TracFone must meet prior to receiving support under the Lifeline universal service program. Specifically, TracFone must request a certification from each public safety answering point (PSAP) where it provides Lifeline service confirming that TracFone provides its customers with access to basic and E911 service; however, if, within 90 days of TracFone's request a PSAP has not provided the certification and the PSAP has not made an affirmative finding that TracFone does not provide its customers with access to 911 and E911 service within the PSAP's service area, TracFone may self-certify that it meets the basic and E911 requirements.
    Order: Word | PDF


last reviewed/updated on January 30, 2012  


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