NEW RULES COMING: Federal regulators plan to overhaul an $8 billion fund that subsidizes phone service in rural areas and for the poor, with the goal of redirecting the money toward broadband expansion.
ABOUT THE FUND: The Universal Service Fund was created to ensure that all Americans have access to a basic telephone line. It is supported by a surcharge on long-distance phone bills. More than half the money goes to pay phone companies that provide phone service in rural places where lines are supposedly unprofitable.
TIMETABLE: Rules are to come Thursday as the FCC meets in Washington.