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What is the Federal Universal Service Fund (FUSF)?

The following is from the FCC web site regarding the USF:

Universal Service Fund (USF) Charge – Because telephones provide a vital link to emergency services, government services, and surrounding communities, the federal government promotes telephone service to all households. The USF helps to make phone service affordable and available to all Americans, including consumers with low incomes, those living in areas where the cost of providing telephone service is high, schools and libraries, and rural health care providers. Congress has mandated that all telephone companies providing interstate service must contribute to the USF. Although not required to do so by the government, many carriers choose to pass their USF contribution costs on to their customers in the form of a line item, often called the “Federal Universal Service Fee” or “Universal Connectivity Fee.”

The current incarnation of the FUSF was introduced into tax law created by United States Congress, via the FCC in 1998. Title 47, Code of Federal Regulations, Sections 36, 54, and 69.

This surcharge is imposed for the purpose of providing telecommunications services at an affordable price to schools, libraries, rural health care providers, and low-income customers. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) regulates this surcharge.

For more FUSF information, visit the FCC web site at http://www.fcc.gov/, or http://www.fcc.gov/wcb/universal_service/welcome.html


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