Suspension bridge transforming into rainbow colored cables

 
"Since my first day as Chairman of the FCC, my number one priority has been closing the digital divide and bringing the benefits of the Internet age to all Americans." – FCC Chairman Ajit Pai

Bridging the Digital Divide

High-speed Internet access, or broadband, is critical to economic opportunity, job creation, education, and civic engagement. But there are too many parts of this country where broadband is unavailable. In urban areas, 97% of Americans have access to high-speed fixed service. In rural areas, that number falls to 65%. And on Tribal lands, barely 60% have access. All told, nearly 30 million Americans cannot reap the benefits of the digital age.

Chairman Pai with Gwen and Dylan Harris, click for a larger version...
Chairman Pai with Gwen & Dylan Harris at a South Boston, Virginia, event on providing high-speed internet access to students in underserved areas.

Chairman Ajit Pai's top priority is to close the digital divide between those who have access to cutting-edge communications services and those who do not. He believes that every American who wants to participate in the digital economy should be able to do so.

Reports & Data

Key Initiatives

Under Chairman Pai's leadership, the FCC has taken a number of steps to expand broadband across America. These include:

  • Adopting a Mobility Fund framework to allocate up to $4.53 billion over the next decade to advance 4G LTE service, primarily in rural areas that would not be served in the absence of government support.
  • Implementing the next stages of the Connect America Fund Phase II, which will provide up to $2 billion for rural fixed broadband over the next decade. Through this fund, the FCC also partnered with New York in one of its first actions under Chairman Pai to provide up to $170 million to support rural broadband in combination with $220 million from the state.
  • Launching the Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee to provide advice and recommendations to the Commission on how to accelerate the deployment of high-speed Internet access, including ways to reduce and remove regulatory barriers to infrastructure investment.
  • Initiating rulemakings focused on speeding the deployment of both wireline and wireless networks.
  • Streamlining rules to accelerate the transition to modern broadband networks. These include:
    • Reviewing rules that govern access to utility poles and conduits, which can be a costly and time-consuming barrier to broadband deployment.
    • Revising rules that needlessly delay or even stop companies from replacing copper with fiber and that delay discontinuance of technologies from the 1970s in favor of services using Internet Protocol (IP) technologies.

 

News

March 23, 2018 - Report and Order
FCC Provides Additional $500 Million in Funding for Rural Broadband

March 22, 2018 - News Release
FCC Acts to Speed Deployment of Next-Gen Wireless Infrastructure

March 6, 2018 - News Release
Chairman Pai Proposes $954 Million Plan For Puerto Rico and USVI

February 22, 2018 - News Release
FCC Resolves Petitions for Reconsideration for Mobility Fund Phase II

February 22, 2018 - News Release
FCC Updates National Broadband Map

Road Trip Highlights (Moments)