H.R. 4881 would direct the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to establish the Task Force for Reviewing the Connectivity and Technology Needs of Precision Agriculture in the United States and select 15 members to serve two-year terms. The task force would be required to recommend rules and steps the FCC should take to expand broadband Internet access to unserved agricultural land and to report annually to the FCC. The task force would terminate on January 1, 2025. Under the bill, the FCC and the Department of Agriculture (USDA) would be required to provide information to the task force on all federal programs and resources available for the expansion of broadband Internet access to unserved agricultural land.
Using information from the FCC, CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 4881 would cost $1 million over the 2018-2023 period for the agency to oversee and appoint members to serve on the task force and to produce the required reports. However, under current law, the FCC is authorized to collect fees sufficient to offset the costs of its regulatory activities each year; therefore, CBO estimates that the net cost to the FCC to implement the bill would be negligible, assuming appropriation actions consistent with that authority. CBO estimates that the costs to USDA to coordinate with the task force and produce the required report would not be significant.
Enacting H.R. 4881 would not affect direct spending or revenues; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply.
CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 4881 would not increase net direct spending or on-budget deficits in any of the four consecutive 10-year periods beginning in 2029.
H.R. 4881 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.
On June 5, 2018, CBO transmitted a cost estimate for S. 2343, the Precision Agriculture Connectivity Act of 2018, as ordered reported by the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation on April 25, 2018. The two bills are similar and CBO’s estimates of their budgetary effects are the same.