May 17, 2019 

TIP OF THE WEEK: Remember to check the Early Filing box on the FCC Form 486 if you have your Funding Commitment Decision Letter (FCDL), your services have not yet started but will start in the month of July, and you can accurately make all of the certifications required on the form. After July 31, you are no longer eligible for early filing and you should not check this box.

Commitments for Funding Years 2019 and 2018

Funding Year 2019. USAC released FY2019 Wave 4 FCDLs on May 17. As of May 17, FY2019 commitments total over $715 million.

Funding Year 2018. USAC released FY2018 Wave 55 FCDLs on May 14. As of May 17, FY2018 commitments total over $2.19 billion.

On the date that FCDLs are issued, you can access your FCDL notification from the Notifications section of your landing page in the E-rate Productivity Center (EPC).

June 30 Deadline to Complete FY2018 Special Construction Required to Light or Use the Fiber

To be eligible for E-rate Program discounts for special construction charges – whether for leased lit fiber, leased dark fiber, or a self-provisioned network – special construction must be completed in time for the fiber to be lit (or for a self-provisioned network involving another technology to be in use) by the end of the relevant funding year (i.e., June 30, 2019 for FY2018). If this June 30 deadline is not met and the applicant has not received an extension, the special construction charges will not be eligible for support under program rules.

Extension requests

Applicants seeking support for special construction related to leased dark fiber and self-provisioned networks may request a one-year extension of the June 30 deadline by demonstrating that construction was unavoidably delayed due to weather or other reasons or the late issuance of an FCDL (or non-issuance of an FCDL). The applicant must demonstrate that the reason or reasons have unavoidably delayed special construction in a manner that prevents the fiber from being lit (or a self-provisioned network using another technology to be in use) by the June 30 deadline.

Applicants who sought support for special construction charges related to leased lit fiber may also request a one-year extension on this basis if the applicants requested support for the special construction charges in a funding request that is separate and distinct from the leased lit fiber recurring charges.

Please note: This extension is only available for projects involving distinct special construction funding requests. Applicants seeking support only for recurring charges associated with fiber services must light the associated fiber by the end of the funding year (June 30) and may not seek an extension based on unavoidably delayed construction.

Reasons for requesting an extension of the June 30 Deadline

In order for USAC to evaluate your extension request, please include the reason you need an extension. Be prepared to state one of the following in your request:

  • USAC issued your FCDL after February 2019 and special construction did not begin until you received the FCDL;
  • USAC has not yet issued your FCDL and special construction has not yet begun;
  • USAC has not yet issued your FCDL and you opted to commence special construction, but that work began after February 2019; or
  • A detailed explanation of why construction for your project has been unavoidably delayed and the June 30 deadline to light the fiber cannot be met despite receiving an FCDL and/or commencing special construction in February 2019 or earlier.

Relevant details include the date that you received your FCDL (or a statement that the FCDL has not been received yet), the date that you started special construction, the breadth and complexity of the fiber build project, and any other factors relevant to your particular circumstances (e.g., weather, terrain) that caused the delay.

This request must be certified and submitted to USAC by the June 30, 2019 deadline.

If the extension request is granted, the new deadline to complete special construction and light the fiber or use the network for the FY2018 special construction funding request will be June 30, 2020.

Instructions for Filing

To request a one-year extension of the FY2018 deadline to complete special construction and light the fiber or use the network (June 30, 2019), follow the instructions provided below. If you need assistance, contact the Client Service Bureau (CSB) at 888-203-8100.

If you have already received an FCDL approving the funding request for your FY2018 special construction project, complete an FCC Form 500.

  • On the first page of the FCC Form 500, click the "Yes" button under the option "I want to request more time to get the services delivered and installed." You must also choose "Yes" or "No" for the other five changes you can make on the form before you can continue to the next page.
  • When you complete the Service Delivery Extension section of the form, be sure to select ALL of the Funding Request Numbers (FRNs) to which the request applies.
  • Choose "Yes" to respond to the statement "Was the service provider unable to complete delivery and installation for reasons beyond their control?" The answer to the following question will automatically change to "No."
  • You MUST provide an explanation of the unavoidable delay. Your explanation should be consistent with the reason in one of the bullet points under "Reasons for Requesting an Extension of the June 30 Deadline" above.
  • After you have completed all of the entries on your form, certify the form.

If we have questions about your form, we will send them to you through EPC. You can review and respond to our questions by clicking the Review Inquiries menu item at the top of your form.

If you have not received an FCDL for your FY2018 special construction project, submit an FY2018 Special Construction Deadline Extension Request (SCDER).

First, download a copy of the FY2018 Special Construction Deadline Extension Request worksheet. This worksheet contains three tabs – General Details, Service Delivery Extension, and Certification Details. The database fields that must be completed are highlighted in yellow. If you have more than one FRN, please complete a separate worksheet for each FRN.

Second, open a customer service case in EPC and attach your completed worksheet to the case. Please reference the April 21, 2017 SL News Brief for instructions on how to submit your SCDER for your FRN(s) that are pending a decision from USAC.

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