Uptick in E-rate Bidding. Still Time to Act.
The beginning of the new year saw a significant increase in Form 470 postings, particularly for Category Two goods and services. As of January 23, there have been 14,799 funding year 2020 Form 470 competitive bidding notifications filed by E-rate applicants.
The following charts illustrate the count of Category One and Category Two Forms 470 filed in October, November, December and January (through the 23rd) comparing funding year 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020.
One area that stands out is the Category Two activity in January for funding year 2020. For the prior three months, the number of forms posted was lower than the similar period for funding year 2019; however, with the release of the new Category Two rules and the announcement of the E-rate filing window, activity has surged. More Category Two RFPs have been released during the first 23 days of January than ever before. This suggests that applicants are aware of the extra $1.5 billion available for on-campus projects in funding year 2020. (Estimate your Category Two budget here.)
Applicants are encouraged to prepare and submit their Form 470 competitive bidding requests as soon as possible.