Services Provided by E-Rate Central for Schools and Libraries
E-Rate Central has created the E-Rate Organizer, a new, powerful and easy-to-use Web-based tool, to organize and analyze E-rate information to meet the specific needs of schools and libraries. This web based tool will search, organize, and help you digest the confusing E-rate information pertaining to your school or library as follows:
- Historical Funding Analysis for all funding years from the inception of the program to the present
- Amounts requested, committed, and disbursed
- Number of Funding Request Numbers (FRNs) and funded FRNs
- For each funding year, specific detailed information regarding
- Form 471 numbers
- Service Provider,
- Type of Service
- Amounts requested, funded, disbursed and utilized
- Form 486 Analysis and impending deadlines.
Technology Plan Development, Assessment, Compliance and Review:
Failure to have a compliant and state approved technology plan will result in funding denial or revocation of previous funding for up the entire period covered by the deficient or unapproved technology plan.
The assessment and development of a technology plan is the cornerstone and foundation for the school technology development and the first step (and one of the most critical) in satisfying the myriad of E-rate requirements.
A good technology plan is vital to the efficient and effective implementation of a district's technology strategy to meet both curricular and administrative goals and functions. Although useful in its own right, an appropriate and state approved technology plan is required to meet E-rate program requirements.
E-Rate Central will develop and/or assess, analyze and review the current technology plan in order to insure compliance with the five core technology plan requirements and identify goals and objectives that constitute E-rate eligible goods and services.
Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA) Compliance:
Develop and implement the CIPA requirements.
Discount Rate Analysis and Optimization:
Using the highest discount rate to which you are entitled may make the difference between getting funding for internal connections and not receiving funding. You may be near a significantly higher discount rate, but are not using the method most advantageous to your district. You may be under counting those eligible for the free and reduced program.
Since the beginning of the E-rate program E-Rate Central has been providing expert guidance on discount rate optimization analysis, alternative discount rate mechanisms, formulation of surveys, and developing and implementing strategies to maximize our client district's discount rates. These strategies may increase funding potential. We also insure that unacceptable or unauthorized discount method procedures are not utilized.
Forms Preparation and Submission:
We collect all necessary information from the applicants, prepare all E-rate forms (470, 471, 472, 474, 479, 486, and 500), prepare special requests (SPIN changes, service substitution requests, deadline extension requests, etc.) , serve as the first point of contact on all PIA inquiries, SLD reviews, prepare appeals if needed, and coordinate with suppliers on contract and billing issues. We work hand in hand with you to keep you notified of all deadlines, information required, new developments and E-rate funding opportunities. For the majority of our clients we take care of all of their E-rate needs for a fair fixed annual fee.
Bid and Procurement Process Planning and Review:
The bidding and procurement process is currently an area of close scrutiny by the SLD. E-Rate Central will advise and help develop an E-rate compliant pre-bidding process, bidding process, matrix development, evaluation, selection, and award of contracts.
Additional services may be provided regarding:
- Request For Proposal (RFP) & Contract Compliance Review
- Basic Maintenance Contract Compliance
- Internal Connections Planning & Coordination (new 2 in 5 rule)
- Eligible Service and Equipment.
Document Retention & Management:
Violation of the document retention rule may subject an applicant to a commitment adjustment ("COMAD"), whereby, USAC may demand repayment of associated funds (up to 5 years after the last date of delivery of discounted services).
There are stringent document retention requirements which the applicant is required to follow or be subject to potential loss of funding.
E-Rate Central will review the current record retention practices and implement a process that fully complies with the document retention regulations.
Selective Review, Site Review and Audit Preparation & Representation:
There are many rule violations which may subject an applicant to a commitment adjustment ("COMAD"), whereby, USAC may demand repayment of associated funds (up to 5 years after the last date of delivery of discounted services).
Currently, the SLD and FCC are drastically increasing regulatory oversight and enforcement regarding waste, fraud and abuse. This has resulted in approximately 1,000 new site visits, increased on-site full audits and the implementation of new certifications. Both small and large applicants have been targeted, resulting in potential criminal and civil liability.
Mr. George McDonald (the former head of the SLD and with the agency since 1997) has joined E-Rate Central. His experience with the procedures, practices and methodology of the E-rate program and enforcement agencies enables Mr. McDonald to provide our clients with unmatched representation services during any Selective Review, Site Review, Audit or Inquiry.
Now, it is not only important to be successful in getting funds disbursed, but you must make sure you do not have to return previously disbursed funds.
Appeal Strategy and Submission:
E-Rate Central has written and been filing appeals on behalf of its clients since the inception of the program. We have a vast amount of experience filing appeals with both the SLD and the FCC. E-Rate Central's strategy, advice and appeal services are sought by applicants across the country.
E-Rate Weekly Newsletter:
Since the beginning of the E-rate program E-Rate Central has been writing and distributing the Weekly E-Rate Newsletter (see www.e-ratecentral.com/archive/News/News1998) containing expert analysis and commentary with the latest E-rate news and tips, including:
- Funding award information
- Application schedules
- Form and preparation tips and reminders
- References to information released by the SLD and FCC
- New Interpretations, commentary and analysis of SLD and FCC rules
- SLD and FCC appeal information
- Alerts regarding forthcoming rule changes and legislation
- Related E-rate information (e.g., State contracts)
- Related technology information.
Other Needs or Consulting Services:
If there are any other needs or services which your school or library may need, we would be happy to provide a solution to your problem.
To contact us please call (516) 801-7804 or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.