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September 23, 2019

Introduction

The E-Rate Central News for the Week is prepared by E-Rate Central. E-Rate Central specializes in providing consulting, compliance, and forms processing services to E-rate applicants. To learn more about our services, please contact us by phone (516-801-7804), fax (516-801-7814), or through our Contact Us web form. Additional E-rate information is located on the E-Rate Central website.

USAC released Wave 25 for FY 2019 on Thursday, September 19th.  Funding totaled $30.9 million.  Cumulative commitments through September 19th are $1.72 billion. 

Upcoming E-Rate Dates:

September 23 –  
November 21
Remaining USAC 2019 fall applicant and tribal training sessions.  (See USAC’s 2019 Training webpage for a schedule of the sessions.).
September 23 Deadline for submitting comments to the USDA’s proposal to revise the categorical eligibility of families in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (“SNAP”) (FNS-2018-0037).    (See our newsletter of August 5th for E-rate implications.)
September 30 Last day to receive non-recurring services for FY 2018 and/or the deadline for requesting a one-year extension of the delivery and installation of such services.
October 28 Invoice deadline for FY 2018 recurring services.  Note:  For applicants and service providers unable to submit invoices by this date, October 28th is also the deadline for filing 120-day Invoice Deadline Extension Requests (“IDERs”).
October 28 Due date for nominations of six positions on the USAC Board of Directors (see DA 19-835) including the slot reserved for a library representative and one of the two slots reserved for school representatives.
October 29 First Form 486 deadline for FY 2019, covering funding committed in Waves 1-10.  More generally, the Form 486 deadline is 120 days from the FCDL date or the service start date (typically July 1st), whichever is later.  The upcoming Form 486 deadlines are:

Waves 1-10        10/29/2019
Wave 11             11/04/2019
Wave 12             11/08/2019
Wave 13             11/15/2019

Note:  Applicants missing any Form 486 deadline should watch carefully for “Form 486 Urgent Reminder Letters” in their EPC News Feed.  These Reminder Letters afford applicants 15-day extensions to submit their Form 486s without penalty.

October 31 Proposed deadline to update the business type in existing Form 498s.  (See our newsletter of August 19th.)

USAC Fall Applicant Training

USAC’s annual fall applicant training began with two 1½-day sessions last week in Washington, DC.  USAC’s full applicant training series for 2019, including special tribal workshops, runs through November.

Both of last week’s sessions were well run but devoid of much new information as USAC awaits
several key decisions from the FCC regarding FY 2020.  The most important of which is the future of Category 2 budgets and several possible changes in product and service eligibility.

Thirty Senators Oppose USF Cap

Thirty Democratic U.S. Senators signed a letter to FCC Chairman Pai requesting that the FCC discard any plans to set an overall funding cap on the Universal Service Fund (“USF”) (see our newsletter of June 3rd).  The letter was spearheaded by Sen. Edward Markey (D-MA) who, while in the House of Representatives, was a leading advocate of the E-rate Program.  The Senators’ letter argues in part that:


Thirty Senators Oppose USF Cap

USAC’s Schools and Libraries News Brief of September 20, 2019 includes the following invoicing reminders for applicants and service providers:

  • October 28th is the deadline to file invoices for most FY 2018 recurring service FRNs.
  • Applicants and service providers with approved Form 498s should review the information for accuracy.  Correct bank account information is particularly important.  All Form 498 filers should complete the new field to provide business type information (see our newsletter of August 19th).
  • Applicants intending to file BEAR forms, but who do not yet have approved Form 498s, should complete and certify their Form 498s as soon as possible to avoid delays in form approval.
  • Similarly, applicants intending to file BEAR forms, but who do not yet have Personal Identification Numbers (“PINs”) required to access the online BEAR forms, should request their PINs as soon as possible.
  • Applicants and service providers who cannot file their invoices by the October 28th deadline should file Invoice Deadline Extension Requests (“IDERs”) for each FRN before the invoice deadline expires (i.e., also by October 28th).  Applicants can request IDERs in bulk for multiple FRNs within EPC.