CHCF-A Program Overview

CHCF-A Fact Sheet

The CHCF-A was implemented in accordance with Public Utilities Code § 275.6 to provide universal service rate support to small independent telephone corporations in amounts sufficient to meet the revenue requirements established by the commission through rate-of-return regulation in furtherance of the state’s universal service commitment to the continued affordability and widespread availability of safe, reliable, high-quality communications services in rural areas of the state.

CHCF-A promotes customer access to advanced services and deployment of broadband-capable facilities in rural areas that is reasonably comparable to that in urban areas, consistent with national communications policy. Include all reasonable investments necessary to provide for the delivery of high-quality voice communication services and the deployment of broadband-capable facilities in the rate base of small independent telephone corporations.

CHCF-A is funded by an all-end-user surcharge collected by telecommunications carriers which, in turn, remit the surcharge monies to a financial institution as directed by the Commission or its representatives. Procedures for the administration of CHCF-A are outlined in the Implementation of the California Intrastate High Cost Fund adopted by the Commission in D.91-09-042, available through this link:

The 13 Small Incumbent Local Exchange Carriers (Small ILECs) in California that are eligible to draw revenue from the CHCF-A program are:

  • Calaveras Telephone Company
  • California-Oregon Telephone Company
  • Ducor Telephone Company
  • Foresthill Telephone Company
  • Happy Valley Telephone Company
  • Hornitos Telephone Company
  • Kerman Telephone Company
  • Pinnacles Telephone Company
  • The Ponderosa Telephone Company
  • Sierra Telephone Company
  • Siskiyou Telephone Company
  • The Volcano Telephone Company
  • Winterhaven Telephone Company

Three of the listed Small ILECs that do not currently draw from the CHCF-A fund are:

  • Happy Valley Telephone Company
  • Hornitos Telephone Company
  • Winterhaven Telephone Company

Map of ILECs territories - Please note the map includes an overlay of CHCF-B territories.

CHCF-A Order Instituting Rulemaking

This rulemaking (R.11-11-007) ordered a review of the CHCF-A. The CPUC ordered the review in response to market, regulatory, and technological changes since the CHCF-A program was first established in 1987. You may review the rulemaking application and documents submitted during the rulemaking process through this link.  

Pursuant to Decision 14-12-084, the Communications Division has completed the Broadband Internet and Wireline Voice Competition Study in Service Territories of Small Incumbent Local Exchange Carriers

On July 22, 2019, the CPUC hosted a webinar to inform tribal communities about the A-fund.   Here is a map of the Small ILECs service territories with an overlay of the tribal communities. 

Advisory Committee

The CHCF-A Administrative Committee, is an advisory board formed pursuant to Public Utilities Code § 275(a), The CHCF-A Administrative Committee meets on a quarterly basis and advises the Commission on the development, implementation, and administration of the CHCF-A program. More information on the CHCF-A Administrative Committee, including a list of members, is available through this link:

Additionally, information on the CHCF-A Administrative Committee charter is available through this link:

CHCF-A Reports

Staff Reports of small LECs operating in California who are eligible to receive CHCF-A funding:

Contact Information

A hard copy of Commission decisions/orders can be obtained for a fee by calling 415-703-2045. Questions about this program should be directed to Dorris Chow at