There is a fascinating special report at Politico that ouliness a serious threat to the the Universal Service Fund's (USF) very existence. A conservative nonprofit called Consumers' Research has filed lawsuits claiming that the USF is unconstitutional. The basis of their claim is USF is supported by a surcharge on certain long distance telephone revenues, and that this surcharge is in reality a tax. And the Universal Service Administrative Company, which administers the USF, does not have taxing authority.
The cases have been making their way through the courts since 2021 and that latest hearing will be in New Orleans beginning September 19th. The Politico article says that the cases could ulitmately end up in the US Supreme Court.
A negative court ruling on USF could have serious repercussions across the broadband industry, and the issue bears close watching.
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Presented by the Community Broadband Action Network and curated by Curtis Dean.