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$2.1 Billion for Free Cellphones

by on June 14, 2012

“In 2011, the FCC estimated the cost (page 153) of the program would be $2.1 billion and said it would reach $3.3 billion by 2014 absent major reforms. The FCC also found that part of the problem with the program was rampant fraud:

[O]ur ongoing oversight has revealed that a substantial number of subscribers are receiving duplicative Lifeline support, which includes individuals receiving two or more Lifeline benefits from ETCs as well as two or more individuals in a household receiving benefits from multiple ETCs.

“How bad is the fraud? A survey conducted by the FCC across 17 states and territories found that, on average, 9% of phone recipients were ineligible (page 243). In some states like Alabama, New Hampshire, and West Virginia, the ineligibility rate was 18-19%. And all of that is based on a survey to which 27% of users refused to respond to questions.”


  1. Anonymous permalink

    I also heard they’ll be getting free pedicures because they’re on their feet all day looking for work. But it can only be a BASIC pedicure.. no fancy nail art or French polish!

  2. Anonymous permalink

    Moochelle’s so happy because she’s got a McRib stashed in her back pocket. Salad bar is for homeboys

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