The Public Service Department promotes the interest of the general public in the provision of the state's telephone services, and ensures that the state's telecommunications infrastructure can support a diversified set of services that address the current and potential needs of the state's residents and business entities.
To better understand Vermont's telecommunications needs and develop plans for meeting those needs, the Public Service Department, in coordination with the Department of Innovation and Information, the Agency of Commerce and Community Development, and the Agency of Transportation, produces a ten-year plan that serves as the basis for state telecommunications policy. The plan is updated every three years in accordance with 30 V.S.A. § 202d. Information on the 2017 Telecommunications Plan can be found here.
The 2014 Telecommunications Plan can be found here: Telecommunications Plan
Vermont Universal Service Fund
Consumers of retail telecommunications services in Vermont are billed a fee by their service provider to support the Vermont Universal Service Fund (VUSF). Service providers deposit the collected fees into the VUSF, which supports programs for Vermonters through the Telephone Relay Service and the Equipment Distribution Program, the Enhanced 911 network, the Lifeline Program, and the Connectivity Fund. More information on the VUSF can be found here: Vermont Universal Service Fund.
Guide to the § 248a Process for the Siting and Construction of Telecommunications Facilities
This guide is intended to walk readers through the Public Service Board's process for the siting and construction of telecommunications facilities and explains the role individuals and towns can play in the process. Also informative are the procedures the Public Service Board has adopted for processing § 248a petitions.
FirstNet Public Opportunity to Comment
FirstNet, or the First Responder Network Authority, is a federal agency formed to ensure the deployment and operation of a high-speed nationwide broadband network dedicated to public safety. This network will provide first responders with priority access to a mobile wireless broadband network. The national Firstnet Board has selected AT&T to provide the national network. In the coming months, the State of Vermont will choose whether to “opt-in” to the First Responder Network or build its own network. In 2013 Vermont established the Vermont Public Safety Broadband Commission (Vermont PSBC) to review the plan and advise the Governor on the merits of the national network.
AT&T has released a draft plan and members of the public may view information about the draft plan. Members of the public are encouraged to provide the Vermont PSBC with comments on the plan. The comment period ends July 24, 2017.