The Schools and Libraries Program, commonly known as E-rate, provides discounts to help schools and libraries obtain affordable rates for telecommunications, telecommunications services, Internet access, internal connections, and basic maintenance of internal connections. The program is administered by USAC under the oversight of the FCC.
Use this brochure to educate board members and city/county officials on the Erate Program.
The Schools and Libraries Program News Brief will give you information about upcoming funding commitments, tips to help you through the application process, and other timely information. This electronic news brief is issued weekly.
Use the following link to subscribe to this informative weekly newsletter.
File Online in E-Rate Productivity Center (EPC)
Watch this video created by Josh Batchelor at the C. E. Weldon Library on how to file the Form 470 on the Erate Productivity Center (EPC):
Form 470 for Funding Year 2018 (Fiscal Year 2018/2019) is now available in the portal.
Instructional videos: http://www.usac.org/sl/about/outreach/online-learning.aspx
From the newsletter: Remember that USAC will be hosting a webinar on how to complete the FCC Form 470 on Tuesday, July 18, at 3:00 PM EDT. To register for the webinar, visit the Webinars page on the USAC website.
Form 470 is the first form in the filing cycle for E-rate. This form does not need any specific information about vendors or pricing, instead it is looking for generalities: the type of service that you want to file for, and how many phone lines/internet access ports you have. Please be aware that for the 2018 funding cycle, phone service assistance diminishes by an additional 20% from the prior year for a total reduction of 80%. So if your discount percentage is anything below 90%, you will not receive any funding towards your phone services.
There is no deadline set at this time for Form 470. I expect it will be similar to prior years and the deadline will be sometime in December/January. Once the deadline for Form 471 is set, the deadline for Form 470 will be set as well, because of the 28-day wait between the forms.
Wait, what? Didn’t we just do this?
With E-rate, we are usually working on several funding years at a time in the summer. So right now, we’ve got three funding years going:
Funding Year 2016 (Fiscal Year 2016/2017) For those who have been funded, you can file your Form 472s as the fiscal year is now over. (more on this below)
Funding Year 2017 (Fiscal Year 2017/2018) We are waiting for the first funding waves to be released, then as libraries are notified, you’ll generate your Funding Commitment Decision letter and file Form 486
Funding Year 2018 (Fiscal Year 2018/2019) Form 470 to start the cycle is available to submit
Do I have to do this now?
None of the above have deadlines that fall in the summer, so you have time to wait, if you want. The deadlines are:
Form 472 (for FY 2016) – Deadline October 28, 2017
Form 486 (for FY 2017) – Deadline October 29, 2017, or 120 days from the time you were notified of your Funding Commitment Decision Letter, whichever is later
Form 470 (for FY 2018) – no deadline set, though I expect it to fall in December/January
Why is Form 470 available so early?
Form 470 is available starting in the summer to allow for those entities who have long bidding cycles for services that they request that require that they go out to RFP (Request for Proposal). Even if you are not going out to bid, Form 470 is available to all if anyone wants to get an early start.
Now is also the time to consider filing your Form 472 for Funding Year 2016 (Fiscal Year 2016/2017) if you do not receive discounted bills. Please keep in mind that all of your bills for the 206/2017 fiscal year need to be generated before you file, as you can only request as a reimbursement only as much as you were billed for over the course of the fiscal year.
Note: you cannot request more than what you were funded – so if you were funded $500.00 for internet service, and your bills for eligible services is $1,000.00, you can only request the $500.00.
Note: if you receive discounted bills, you do not have to file Form 472
Note: you will need a PIN to complete submission of this form. Information on PINs: http://www.universalservice.org/sl/tools/forms/pin.aspx
Deadline for Form 472: October 28, 2017
Form 472 is still not in the portal, but is only available to file online.
Documentation from Jennifer's Erate Workshop on November 19, 2015.