At the end of each quarter the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) sets a new contribution factor for the Universal Service Fund (USF fee). The percentage may increase or decrease from the previous quarter. In 2011 from first to second quarter the percentage changed from 14.9% to 14.4%.
So what is a USF fee and why do I have to pay it? Good question. Here is the answer: Federal law requires all long distance service providers to contribute to the Universal Service Fund. The fund offers support to telecommunications carriers in rural and high-cost areas, low-income consumers, schools, libraries and rural health care providers.