The Federal Communications Commission has agreed to extend the deadline for installing projects funded with Year 2 E-rate support from June 30, 2000 to Sept. 30, 2000. In addition, the FCC said applicants would be authorized to extend the related contracts to Sept, 30, 2000 if they needed to.
Schools and school districts had argued that they needed the additional time so that they could complete their internal connections projects during the summer vacation months. The FCC approved a similar extension last year.
The FCC did not address the situation of applicants who filed appeals in the second funding year nor those schools and libraries who submitted applications after the close of the initial filing window. The Schools and Libraries Division has not finished its review of Year 2 appeals, nor has it distributed funding commitments to successful appellants. In addition, the SLD has said it will not begin reviewing the late-filed Year 2 applications until it finishes its work on the Year 3 funding commitments. Based on previous experience, it could be expected that the FCC will give applicants in these circumstances another 180 days from the date that they receive their funding commitments to complete their projects.
"This is good news for E-rate participants," SLD President Kate L. Moore said of the decision to extend the deadline to Sept. 30. "Now schools and libraries will have more time to work with their service providers to build the vital links between learners and the Internet in libraries and schools across the nation."