Proposed E-rate Bidding Portal
Dear Chairwoman Rosenworcel and Commissioners Carr, Starks and Simington:
We urge the Commission not to implement the proposed E-rate bidding portal. The FCC’s proposal would negatively impact our ability to participate in the E-rate program. We believe that procurement decisions are best made at the local level, not by the Universal Service Administrative Company.
The E-rate funding program is vital to our organization’s internet connectivity goals, and we depend on it to provide faster, more affordable connections to the community we serve. We strongly support the current E-rate competitive bidding system, including the requirements that applicants:
- Comply with their state and local competitive bidding rules
- Notify potential bidders of opportunities via posting of the FCC Form 470
- Publish vendor selection and pricing information via submission of the FCC Form 471
- Maintain competitive bidding documents for a ten-year period
The E-rate competitive bidding regulations do not need to be changed. The current regulations serve individual applicants, and the overall program, very well.
Rather than federalizing the procurement of E-rate eligible goods and services, the public would be better served if the Commission would focus its efforts on the following two areas: (1) updating the existing E-rate eligible services list, and (2) instructing USAC to improve the EPC online application portal.
Thank you for providing the E-rate program. It is a valuable resource for our community.
Keep Current E-rate Bidding Rules – petition signatures can be viewed here