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Title 47Chapter ISubchapter BPart 54Subpart J → §54.802


Title 47: Telecommunication
PART 54—UNIVERSAL SERVICE
Subpart J—Rural Digital Opportunity Fund


§54.802   Rural Digital Opportunity Fund geographic areas, deployment obligations, and support disbursements.

(a) Geographic areas eligible for support. Rural Digital Opportunity Fund support may be made available for census blocks or other areas identified as eligible by public notice.

(b) Term of support. Rural Digital Opportunity Fund support shall be provided for ten years.

(c) Deployment obligation. (1) All recipients of Rural Digital Opportunity Fund support must complete deployment to 40 percent of the required number of locations as determined by the Connect America Cost Model by the end of the third year, to 60 percent by the end of the fourth year, and to 80 percent by the end of the fifth year. The Wireline Competition Bureau will publish updated location counts no later than the end of the sixth year. A support recipient's final service milestones will depend on whether the Wireline Competition Bureau determines there are more or fewer locations than determined by the Connect America Cost Model in the relevant areas as follows:

(i) More Locations. After the Wireline Competition Bureau adopts updated location counts, in areas where there are more locations than the number of locations determined by the Connect America Cost Model, recipients of Rural Digital Opportunity Fund support must complete deployment to 100 percent of the number of locations determined by the Connect America Cost Model by the end of the sixth year. Recipients of Rural Digital Opportunity Fund support must then complete deployment to 100 percent of the additional number of locations determined by the Wireline Competition Bureau's updated location count by end of the eighth year. If the new location count exceeds 35% of the number of locations determined by the Connect America Cost Model within their area in each state, recipients of Rural Digital Opportunity Fund support will have the opportunity to seek additional support or relief.

(ii) Fewer Locations. In areas where there are fewer locations than the number of locations determined by the Connect America Cost Model, a Rural Digital Opportunity Fund support recipient must notify the Wireline Competition Bureau no later than March 1 following the fifth year of deployment. Upon confirmation by the Wireline Competition Bureau, Rural Digital Opportunity Fund support recipients must complete deployment to the number of locations required by the new location count by the end of the sixth year. Support recipients for which the new location count is less than 65 percent of the Connect America Cost Model locations within their area in each state shall have the support amount reduced on a pro rata basis by the number of reduced locations.

(iii) Newly Built Locations. In addition to offering the required service to the updated number of locations identified by the Wireline Competition Bureau, Rural Digital Opportunity Fund support recipients must offer service to locations built since the revised count, upon reasonable request. Support recipients are not required to deploy to any location built after milestone year eight.

(d) Disbursement of Rural Digital Opportunity Fund funding. An eligible telecommunications carrier will be advised by public notice when it is authorized to receive support. The public notice will detail how disbursements will be made.

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