Today, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted on Chairman Wheeler’s proposal to modernize E-Rate. This is an important first step toward reforming and modernizing the E-Rate program and includes many common sense improvements such as simplifying the application process, stretching existing funds further, and expanding access to broadband and Wi-Fi. Going forward, the FCC must continue to explore ways to prioritize consortia and make E-rate a fiscally sustainable program. Reform should encourage programmatic fiscal discipline and be respectful of the impact on the monthly phone bills of all Americans. Decisions about the size of the E-rate program must be made after a fact-based analysis of the needs of the program once the reforms voted on today have been implements.
A fact sheet on today’s decision is available here. Read our detailed proceedings here and here. We also joined a diverse coalition representing 50 states, 6,000 schools, 4,000 online leaders in expressing support for these necessary improvements.