Connect America Fund Eligible Areas

Pete CodellaBroadband

The FCC has put out an updated map that identifies census block groups that are eligible for the CAF II Auction (Auction 93).  The auction will use competitive building to allocate up to $1.98 billion of support over the next 10 years in high-cost rural areas. 

Chairman Pai of the FCC has taken steps to advance parts of his digital empowerment agency to advance broadband in America under the Trump Administration.  In February the FCC voted to adopt rules for the upcoming Mobility Fund Phase II auction and the Connect America Fund (CAF) Phase II auction.  Pai has also established a task force to oversee these two auctions to help them progress forward.  The Connect America Phase II auction will focus on two areas within the country to reach the policy outcome to try and achieve broadband across America.  These areas include where the incumbent telephone company declined an earlier offer of universal service subsides and that are deemed extremely costly to serve, based on a FCC-developed cost model.

These areas are being auctioned due to the need to find ways to incent the private market to serve them. Some form of financial subsidy is necessary to entice these companies to serve these areas.  Communities have the opportunity to identify demand for services and make that known to potential service providers.