Vermont Announces ISP Grants
The Vermont Department of Public Service announced nearly $220,000 in grant awards to internet service providers to boost broadband internet speeds at more than 220 eligible locations in twelve rural Vermont communities. Among other companies, the Department awarded $63,250 to ECFiber to bring fiber optic cable service to 49 homes and businesses in the towns of Tunbridge and Corinth. Consolidated Communications, Inc. received $44,498 to expand broadband to 37 homes and businesses in Barnet. Pear Networks and Kingdom Fiber received a grant of $85,000 to bring fiber optic cable service to 126 homes and businesses in Bloomfield, Brighton, Brunswick, Canaan, Ferdinand, Lemington, and Maidstone.
The Regulatory Mix Today: Vermont Announces ISP Grants, Alaska Revisions to Proposed State TRS Fund Rules, Maryland Enacts Bill that Allows Electric Cooperatives to Provide Broadband
Alaska Proposed State TRS Fund Rules
The Regulatory Commission of Alaska (RCA) proposes to adopt further revisions to its proposed Telecommunications Relay Services (TRS) rules. The most recent changes restructure the surcharge to make the rate uniform for all customers. RCA staff has confirmed that VoIP providers will be expected to collect the TRS surcharge based upon the rules’ use of the terms “telecommunications carriers” and “providers of telecommunications services.” Comments regarding the most recent changes to the regulations are due by May 17, 2019. Inteserra Briefing Service subscribers see Briefing dated 4/29/19
Maryland Enacts Bill that Allows Electric Cooperatives to Provide Broadband
Maryland enacted a bill that allows for an electric cooperative to construct, maintain, or operate or allow others to construct, maintain, or operate conducting or communications facilities for telecommunications and broadband Internet services along, on, under, or across various types of property. Among other things, the bill ensures that electric customers won’t subsidize the cost of broadband services by making electric cooperatives allocate their costs separately between services. The bill takes effect October 1, 2019.
The Regulatory Mix, Inteserra’s blog of telecom related regulatory activities, is a snapshot of PUC, FCC, legislative, and occasionally court issues that our regulatory monitoring team uncovers each day. Depending on their significance, some items may be the subject of an Inteserra Briefing.