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US: Court blocks FCC tribal lands

 |  August 14, 2018

An appeals court on Friday, August 10, blocked the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) plan to cut a broadband subsidy in tribal regions.

If the cut were implemented, “tribal populations will suffer widespread loss of vital telecommunications services” that are important “for day-to-day medical, educational, family care, and other functions,” judges Sri Srinivasan, Patricia Millett and Cornelia Pillard of the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit said in a stay order.

The FCC voted last November to make cuts to the Tribal Lifeline subsidy program, which would have taken away a US$25-per-month subsidy from tribal residents in urban areas, leaving them with only the basic US$9.25 subsidy plan, according to Ars Technica. The vote also reportedly limited options for rural tribal residents, barring them from using the US$25 subsidy to buy telecom service from resellers.

Full Content: Arstechnica

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