Broadband communication has become a necessity and funding for rural network enhancements remains challenging. Unfortunately, nearly 20% of the housing units in areas served by rate-of-return carriers lack access to the minimum 10 Mbps downstream/1 Mbps upstream (10/1 Mbps) mandated by the FCC. In 2012 the Connect America Fund (CAF) established standards for basic voice and broadband services in High-Cost Support areas previously under the Universal Service Fund (USF) and the Telecommunications Act of 1996. Beginning in 2015 CAF II was launched initially addressing Price Cap Carriers, with Rate-of-Return Carrier rules following in 2016-17. However, these funds are only distributed to providers who can meet the standards that have been set by CAFII in terms of speed, latency, and usage capacity. Most important, the speed targets are time sensitive and the clock is ticking!Read More