§ 63.161. Statement of purpose and policy.
On July 8, 1993, the General Assembly enacted 66 Pa.C.S. Chapter 30 (relating to alternative form of regulation of telecommunications services) which provides for the regulatory reform of the telephone industry in this Commonwealth.
(1) The General Assemblys first declaration of policy in Chapter 30 is to [m]aintain universal telecommunications services at affordable rates while encouraging the accelerated deployment of a universally available state-of-the-art, interactive, public switched broadband telecommunications network in rural, suburban and urban areas. See 66 Pa.C.S. § 3001(1) (relating to declaration of policy).
(2) The General Assembly assigned to the Commission and this Commonwealths telecommunications providers responsibility for assuring and maintaining universal service in this Commonwealth. Given an increasingly competitive telecommunications marketplace, it is necessary to establish a competitively-neutral universal service funding mechanism to assure and maintain universal service and to promote the development of competition in telecommunications markets throughout this Commonwealth.
(3) The purpose of the Fund is to maintain the affordability of local service rates for end-user customers while allowing rural telephone companies to reduce access charges and intraLATA toll rates, on a revenue-neutral basis, thereby encouraging greater competition.
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