May 29, 2020

TIP OF THE WEEK: Please continue to check your email for notifications that Program Integrity Assurance (PIA) has posed questions that are awaiting your response. Even if your application is on summer deferral, you can answer your questions and restart the review of your application if you are ready to do so.

Commitments for Funding Year (FY) 2020

FY2020. USAC released FY2020 Wave 4 Funding Commitment Decision Letters (FCDLs) on May 28. As of May 29, FY2020 commitments total over $816 million.

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).

Three Legacy Tools Updated

Earlier this week, we moved some of the legacy search tools to a new server so that they will continue to function properly. In order to accomplish this, we had to update the code behind the tools, which sometimes resulted in a new look and feel and, in some cases, allowed us to add new or improved features.

The following three tools have been updated:

Search for BEN Information (Entity Search)

  • We streamlined the search window and added the current USAC formatting.
  • We rewrote the helper text for clarity.
  • We updated the layout of the search results.
  • As with the old tool, you can click an Entity Number in the search results to get more details on that entity. You can also get a list of a school district's dependent schools if they have provided a National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) code that we can match to the school district.

Change or Disable Applicant PIN (E-rate PIN Tool)

  • We updated the USAC logo and the header text at the top of the page, and the Home link at the bottom.
  • The other features of this tool have not changed.

View FCC Form 471 Status (FY2015 and prior)

  • We streamlined the search window and added the current USAC formatting.
  • After you enter your Billed Entity Number and choose the funding year, you can indicate the number of search results you want to see on a single page.
  • We combined the reminder about the application process and the list of statuses into a single document, which is available from a link on the search window page.

Filing FCC Form 486 Early

After applicants have received an FCDL with a positive funding commitment and services have started for the funding year, they must file an FCC Form 486 to notify USAC that services have started and to certify the status of their compliance with the Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA).

Under certain circumstances you can file the FCC Form 486 early – that is, before services have started. In order to file early, you must be able to accurately make all of the certifications on the form.

Following are some reminders of the certifications you must be prepared to make now if you are filing your FCC Form 486 early.

CIPA compliance

In the May 15 SL News Brief, we discussed compliance with CIPA.

  • If you are the administrative authority for the school or library and you are also the billed entity, you certify your status of CIPA compliance on your FCC Form 486.
  • If you are the administrative authority but not the billed entity – for example, if you are a member of a consortium and the consortium files for discounted services on your behalf – you certify your status of CIPA compliance on the FCC Form 479 and provide a copy of that form to your consortium leader. Your consortium leader must have copies of FCC Forms 479 on file from all of its members before it can accurately make the appropriate CIPA certifications on the FCC Form 486 on behalf of its members.

You can also refer to the CIPA page on the USAC website for additional information about your requirements under CIPA.

Receipt of positive funding decisions

You must have received an FCDL with at least one positive funding commitment. In EPC, you will not be able to file an FCC Form 486 for an FCC Form 471 Funding Request Number (FRN) unless USAC has issued a commitment for that FRN.

Service start dates and contracts

You must have confirmed with your service provider(s) that the service(s) for your approved funding commitments will start on or before July 31 of the funding year. You must also confirm that those services will be provided to the eligible entities identified on the FRNs.

In addition, you will certify that there are signed contracts covering all of the services listed on the FCC Form 486, except for those services provided under tariff or on a month-to-month basis.

Authorization to submit

You must also certify that you are authorized to submit the FCC Form 486 on behalf of the billed entity; that you have examined the form; and that to the best of your knowledge, information, and belief, all statements of fact provided on the form are true.

You can review the text of all the certifications on the FCC Form 486 after you have completed your entries for the required information on the form. Please review the certifications carefully to make sure that you can accurately make them as of the start of the receipt of discounted services. Do not forget to check the Early Filing box.

As a reminder, starting August 1, early filing no longer applies. At that point, you must wait until services have actually started before you file your FCC Form 486.


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