Federal Communications Law Journal

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Publication Date


Publication Citation

50 Federal Communications Law Journal 215 (1997)


The Telecommunications Act of 1996 extends universal service support to schools and libraries. Pursuant to this legislation, the FCC has provided all eligible schools with discounts of between twenty and ninety percent on telecommunications services, Internet access, and internal connections— to a 2.25 billion dollar annual cap. Critics have denounced the subsidy for internal connections as unsupported by the Act's language and outside the FCC's authority. However, based on a plain reading of the statute, on case law, and on legislative history, it is clear that the FCC properly exercised discretion in allocating the potential fund.