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April 29, 2024


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 (516-801-7810), or through our Contact Us web form. Additional E-rate information is located on the E-Rate Central website.

E-Rate for FY 2024 – First Funding Wave:

Wave 1 for FY 2024 was released on Saturday, April 27th, for $972 million.  For the first time in three years, perhaps because of what appears to be somewhat tighter PIA procedures, the first wave failed to break the $1 billion level.

By our calculations, 831 applications, for total requests of $3.23 million, were submitted “Out Of Window” but within the FCC’s traditional two-week grace period.  We expect to see the first batch of waiver decisions on these late-filed applications early this week when the FCC releases its streamlined decision order for the month of April.

As a trivial sidenote on late, or almost late, filed applications, USAC’s Open Data files indicate that 22 applications were certified in the last ten minutes of the FY 2024 application window whereas 7 applicants, with slightly slower typing skills, missed the March 27th deadline by less than ten minutes.  As of last Friday, USAC’s data indicated that a total of 84 additional applications had been submitted more than two weeks late.

E-Rate for FY 2023:

USAC issued Wave 53 for FY 2023 on Thursday, April 25th, for $6.59 million for six applications.  Total funding is $2.59 billion. At this point, USAC has funded 98.1% of the originally submitted applications representing 94.5% of the dollars requested.

Upcoming Dates:

May 3 Form 486 deadline for FY 2023 Wave 37.  More generally, the Form 486 deadline is 120 days from the FCDL date or from the service start date (typically July 1st), whichever is later.  Upcoming Form 486 deadlines are:
Wave 38              05/10/2024
Wave 39              05/17/2024
Wave 40              05/24/2024
May 28 Extended invoice deadline for FY 2022 non-recurring service FRNs.
June 30 Last day to receive FY 2023 recurring services and all ECF Window 3 services.
June 30 Last day to light fiber (or request an extension) for special construction projects from FY 2023.
August 29     Invoice deadline for ECF Window 3 applications.

Early Form 486 Reminder:

The next step for applicants who have been funded for FY 2024 will be to file Form 486s.  The Form 486 certifies that: (a) the services approved in an application will actually be used; and (b), the applicant is in compliance with the Children’s Internet Protection Act (“CIPA”).  USAC will not approve payments for any approved funding requests until a Form 486 for those requests has been filed and accepted by USAC.  The deadline for filing a Form 486 is 120 days from the service start date or the date of the Funding Commitment Decision Letter (“FCDL”), whichever is later.  For applicants funded in the early waves, including those now funded in Wave 1, and with services starting July 1, the Form 486 deadline will be October 29, 2024.

Applicants, approved for funding in the early waves, planning to file Form 486s before July 1st should make sure to check the early filing certification box which reads:

checkbox The Funding Requests listed in this FCC Form 486 have been approved by USAC as shown in my Funding Commitment Decision Letter (FCDL). I have confirmed with the service provider(s) featured in those Funding Requests that these services will start on or before July 31 of the Funding Year.