E-Rate News Flash 18-13

E-Rate
  Friday, December 7, 2018

Issue 18-13

December 7, 2018

E-rate News Flash

Contents:

  • Announcements
  • Funding Commitment Summary
  • Pending Dates and Deadlines
  • Upcoming Training Events
  • E-rate Process: Activities to Work on Now

Announcements

Eligible Services List Released for Funding Year 2019

On November 16, the Federal Communications Commission released the Eligible Services List (“ESL”) for Funding Year 2019. While there are no significant changes to E-rate eligible services from Funding Year 2018, the FCC did make clarifications in the following areas:

  • Lease or rental fees on eligible equipment are eligible for support regardless of category
  • Addition of cabling as a separate listing under Category Two
  • Applicants may request both equipment and software necessary to use the equipment on the FCC Form 470, or request just the equipment on the FCC Form 470, and still receive support for both the equipment and the software necessary to use the equipment

It is important to note that voice services have been completely removed from the ESL as Funding Year 2018 was the last year of the phase down of support for voice services. The FCC also instructed USAC not to open the Funding Year 2019 Form 471 filing window any earlier than 60 days from the release date of the ESL. This means that the Form 471 filing window will open no earlier than January 15, 2019.

California Funding Commitment Summary

Funding Year 2018

USAC released FY2018 Wave 33 Funding Commitment Decision Letters (FCDL) on November 21, 2018. As of November 21, FY2018 California commitments total over $259 million.

Funding Year 2017

USAC released FY2017 Wave 61 FCDLs on November 9, 2018. There were no commitments for California applicants in Wave 61. As of November 9, FY2017 commitments total over $303 million.

Pending Dates and Deadlines

FCC Form 486 and Urgent Reminder Letters

FCC Form 486 must be filed 120 days from the date of the issuance of the Funding Commitment Decision Letter (“FCDL”) or the start date of E-rate eligible services, whichever is later. For ongoing recurring services, starting on July 1 2018, the following deadlines have passed or are approaching in the next month.

Wave #

FCDL
Date

Form 486 Due Date

1-12

4/20-6/28/18

10/28/18

13

7/6/18

11/3/18

14

7/13/18

11/10/18

15

7/20/18

11/17/18

16

7/27/18

11/24/18

17

8/3/18

12/1/18

18

8/10/18

12/8/18

19

8/17/18

12/15/18

20

8/24/18

12/22/18

21

8/31/18

12/29/18

 

USAC has begun issuing FCC Form 486 Urgent Reminder Letters to applicants that appear to have missed the deadline to certify an FCC Form 486. Applicants missing these or earlier deadlines should closely monitor their News Feed in the E-rate Productivity Center for an FCC Form 486 Urgent Reminder Letter. This letter will allow the applicant a 15-day extension to submit an FCC Form 486 without penalty.

USAC calculates the date to issue this letter based on the service start date reported on your FCC Form 471. If your actual service start date is later than the date you reported on FCC Form 471 then the deadline may not have passed. In this case, you are responsible for calculating your actual deadline as USAC will not issue additional reminder letters.  You can use the 486 Deadlines Tool to calculate your specific deadline.

If you miss the deadline, the service start date will be adjusted to 120 days prior to the date that the Form 486 was actually certified which will likely reduce the funding commitment.

Funding Year 2017 Non-recurring Services Invoice Deadline

In general, the deadline for invoicing USAC for FY 2017 non-recurring services is January 28, 2019.  While this date is still a few months off, it is important to be aware of this timeline since you are only allowed a single, one-time, 120-day extension of the invoicing deadline.

Applicants and service providers should plan to either (1) complete their invoicing process for these services or (2) request an invoice deadline extension no later than the January 28, 2019. 

How to File an Invoice Deadline Extension Request

For Funding Years 2016 and later, use the Invoice Deadline Extension Request Tool in the E-rate Productivity Center (EPC). The process is described in the September 21, 2018 Schools and Libraries Program News Brief.

For funding requests from Funding Years 2015 and prior, applicants may request the extension in the online BEAR system, by initiating a Customer Service Case initiated in EPC, or by calling the Client Service Bureau (CSB) at 888-203-8100. Service providers must request the extension via the CSB. Remember that an applicant must have a Personal Identification Number (PIN) issued by USAC in order to access the BEAR system.

Upcoming Training Events

Numerous training opportunities available for E-rate applicants are coming soon.

Universal Services Administrative Company Webinars and Workshops

Webinars (Register)

  • Preparing for Funding Year 2019

12/12/2018 at 12 Noon PST

K12 High Speed Network Webinars and Workshops

K12 High Speed Network E-rate Trainings

Webinars

  • Completing FCC Form 471 for Category 1 Services

1/24/2019 at 2:00 p.m.

  • Completing FCC Form 471 for Category 2 Services

1/31/2019 at 2:00 p.m.

Workshops (Face-to-Face)

All face-to-face workshops start at 9 a.m. and end at 4:30 p.m.

  • Yolo County Office of Education

E-rate Beginner                                                                              12/5/2018

E-rate Intermediate/Advanced                                         12/6/2018

  • San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools

E-rate Beginner                                                                  12/13/2018

E-rate Intermediate/Advanced                                                     12/14/2018

  • Fresno County Office of Education

E-rate Beginner                                                                              1/14/2019

E-rate Intermediate/Advanced                                                     1/15/2019

EducationSuperHighway Webinars

Upcoming Education SuperHighway Webinars

  • 4 Ways to Get more Bandwidth for Your Budget

01/17/2019 at 10:00 a.m.

  • Build vs. Buy Calculator: Evaluate Your Fiber Bid Responses

01/24/2019 at 10:00 a.m.

E-RATE Process: Activities to Work on Now

Check EPC Profiles for Accuracy, Collect and Review NSLP and Enrollment Data

On October 1, the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) opened the Administrative Window for updating entity profile information in the E-rate Productivity Center (EPC). Profile information includes an entity’s classification, address, enrollment, National School Lunch program information, and Urban/Rural status and is the basis of the discount calculation on the FCC Form 471. The September 28 edition of the Schools and Libraries News Brief provides information on updates made to the EPC profile.

  1. Schools that have recently made their own entity updates should confirm that those changes are still in place, i.e., that they have not been overwritten by this week’s USAC upload.
  2. Update the Entity name and address in the EPC to match the California School Directory
  3. Update the “Number of Fulltime Students” and the “Total Number of Students Eligible for National School Lunch Program (NSLP)” fields to match the California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System (CALPADS) data from the 2018 collection period.  For best results, use the numbers reported on CALPADS and this information should be easily available from your CALPADS Coordinator.
  4. Enter the full 14-digit County-District-School (CDS) number in the “State School

Code” field, with no spaces or dashes. You can find the CDS number in the California School Directory.

a.    Some sites that do not have a CDS number may qualify as an Annex & or Non-Instructional Facility.  A detailed discussion of what constitutes an Annex can be found in the July 21, 2017 News Brief on USAC’s Web page and the March 11, 2016 News Brief on USAC’s Web Page.

5.   Once the discount profile has been updated for each school within the school district, please be sure to go back to your organizations landing page, click on discount rate link and the error will be displayed.

6.  Verify the contact person’s information on the district’s profile. Since this person will receive communications from USAC, it is important that this be someone who has regular e-mail access and access to the LEA’s account in the E-Rate Productivity

Center (EPC).