Existing law vests the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) with regulatory authority over public utilities, including telephone corporations. The Moore Universal Telephone Service Act establishes the state lifeline telephone service program to provide low-income households with access to affordable basic residential telephone service.
Federal law requires a common carrier designated as an eligible telecommunications carrier to be eligible to receive universal service support, which includes support provided by the federal lifeline program, as specified. Federal law provides various pathways for designation as an eligible telecommunications carrier, including, among other pathways, designation by a state commission.
This bill would require the PUC, as part of a new or existing proceeding, to establish an expedited process by which a telephone corporation that offers broadband service may become an eligible telecommunications carrier for the purpose of providing stand-alone broadband service as part of the state or federal lifeline program, or both. The bill would require a telephone corporation to be eligible for the expedited process regardless of whether broadband service is provided by the telephone corporation or its affiliate, as defined.

Statutes affected:
06/10/24 - Amended Senate: 11549.56 GOV, 277 PUC, 285 PUC, 431 PUC, 432 PUC, 433 PUC, 435 PUC, 871 PUC, 871.5 PUC, 871.7 PUC, 873 PUC, 874 PUC, 875 PUC, 877 PUC, 878 PUC, 878.5 PUC, 879 PUC, 879.5 PUC, 42101 RTC