from the now-you-see-it dept.
Submitted via IRC for SoyCow3941
Pai accused of reverse Robin Hood for business buddies:
This week, one year after the US government's General Accountability Office (GAO) formally recommended that it do so, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) moved $8bn it held in a private bank to the US Treasury.
But even though the move has long been planned for and anticipated, it has caused a furious reaction from the organization's own commissioners as well as lawmakers who are concerned it will result in money being pulled away from citizens and given to giant corporations.
The $8bn is the regulator's Universal Service Fund – a program used to subsidize telephone bills and broadband connections for lower-income citizens across the nation. Everyone pays into that fund, typically through a small monthly fee, around 9 cents, on your phone bill.
[...] "In the dark of night last week, without taking any vote the FCC moved billions of USF dollars to a new account," railed Jessica Rosenworcel on Twitter. "In doing so it sacrificed $50 million in annual interest that could have been used to support rural broadband, telemedicine & internet in schools. That's a shame."
Two days later, Rosenworcel was joined by her fellow Democratic commissioner Mignon Clyburn, who also took to Twitter to complain. "The transfer of USF dollars to the US Treasury is now underway," she complained. "What does this mean for us? A loss of more than $55,000,000 in annual interest which could have provided service to 495,495 Lifeline subscribers. Fiscal responsibility? Not!"