Testing Waiver Granted to CAF-II Model-Based Support Recipients for Q3 & Q4 2020

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The FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau (Bureau) has granted on its own motion a
limited waiver of the performance testing requirements for Connect America Fund Phase II (CAF-II) model-based support recipients. Citing continue challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Bureau will allow carriers that are electing a seventh year of CAF-II model support to extend their pre-testing into the third and fourth quarters of 2020 with a waiver of certain sampling requirements before shifting to full testing. The Bureau explains that the purpose of the pre-testing was to allow carriers to gain experience with testing requirements and procedures, which involve installing test equipment in the homes of subscribers that are part of carrier-selected and USAC-selected samples. The Bureau determined that this objective cannot be achieved if carriers are not pre-testing any subscribers or are testing only small numbers of subscribers. However, the Bureau notes that all CAF-II carriers must be prepared to begin testing subscribers using USAC-selected samples in the first quarter of 2021.

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