Sending Office: Honorable Doug Collins
Ensure Internet Service Provider Accountability with Connect America Funds
Cosponsor the Connect America Fund (CAF) Accountability Act of 2019
Too often, we hear stories of students, employers, entrepreneurs, and families in rural and underserved areas burdened with subpar broadband speeds – leaving them with the frustrating reality that they can’t consistently access the Internet. The 21st
century economy demands access to reliable broadband services, a need that Congress has answered in part with federal funding to build up and expand rural broadband infrastructure.
While many Internet Service Providers (ISPs) that have received this funding have used it properly—diligently building out to rural homes and businesses—some have taken taxpayer dollars but failed to fulfill their obligations to their customers. Unfortunately,
when these ISPs fail to meet their obligations they not only use taxpayer dollars inappropriately, but also turn their backs on individuals at the last mile. I am introducing a bill that focuses on accountability for recipients of Connect America Funds (CAF),
to ensure these funds are being used as intended. The CAF Accountability Act will ensure that CAF recipients that provide fixed broadband Internet service are, in fact, meeting the speed requirements outlined in FCC regulations. Currently, CAF recipients are
required to provide speeds of at least 10 Mbps downstream and 1 Mbps upstream to consumers in CAF service areas. Despite this, in my district in Northeast Georgia – a rural district serviced largely by CAF recipients – the speeds reported by consumers are
consistently bad, sometimes not even reaching 3 Mbps downstream and 1 Mbps upstream.
The CAF Accountability Act ensures that CAF recipients are reporting the speeds they are actually providing consumers – not those that are the product of gamed performance testing software, unrepresentative sampling, or repeat testing locations. Accurately
reported speeds will provide the FCC with the knowledge they need to accurately disperse CAF funds and exercise oversight over CAF resources going forward.
If you have any questions about the CAF Accountability Act or would like to cosponsor, please contact Erica Barker on my staff at
firstname.lastname@example.org or 5-9893.
Ninth Congressional District of Georgia
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