ERIC Number: ED394522
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995-Oct
Reference Count: N/A
Advanced Universal Service: State Models for Extending the Information Highway. Info. Packets No. 23.
Most public telecommunications entities have traditionally kept a careful watch on the Federal Communications Commission and on Congress when it comes to issues of access to broadcast spectrum, and in recent years, to satellite frequencies and digital television allocations. This paper focuses on the emerging set of policy initiatives at the state regulatory level designed to help public service entities get connected to private sector networks. State utility commissions have used a number of regulatory strategies to stimulate the deployment of advanced services. Special discounts for educational applications have been approved by many state commissions. As states move away from rate-based regulation, the promise of lessened regulation itself has been the main bargaining tool for getting promises of infrastructure investments and school connections from the regulated carriers. The approach of lessened regulation in exchange for new investments has all but been mandated by the new federal telecommunications legislation still in process. By taking away the state's power to maintain rate-based regulation, federal bills may make it harder to extract significant investment concessions. There is a growing move to limit the use of regulation to "push" telecommunications infrastructure deployment in favor of creating market-based incentives to "pull" advanced offerings into the community--to get unregulated vendors actually to want to invest in less profitable areas and once the investment is made, to ensure that customers can afford to purchase the newly available advanced services. Education, health care, library and local government institutions are the cutting edge of this new approach: advanced universal service. The ability for all Americans to access an affordable set of basic telecommunications services is at the heart of the universal service provisions of state and federal communications regulations. (AEF)
Descriptors: Access to Information, Federal Legislation, Incentives, Information Services, Investment, Private Sector, Programming (Broadcast), Public Policy, State Regulation, Technological Advancement, Telecommunications
Corporation for Public Broadcasting, 901 E. Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20004-2037; e-mail: email@example.com (free).
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Washington, DC.
Identifiers: Federal Communications Commission; Universal Service (Telecommunications)