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USAC Reports on Investigations, Disbursements

In a quarterly report to the Federal Communications Commission Nov. 1, the Universal Service Administrative Company said it is still investigating approximately 270 Form 471 applications from the 2001 funding year for "possible program violations."

In the report, USAC said that 391 applications from 2001 remain to be processed, with about 44 of them ready for commitment. Seventy-five percent of the rest are under investigation. Ten funding year 2000 applications remain in process and six from 1999.

As of Sept. 30, USAC said it had disbursed 50.4 percent of the $2.26 billion worth of commitments that were approved for the 2001 funding year, which ended on June 30, 2002, for recurring service, and on September 30, 2002, for non-recurring services. Because it is still processing invoices associated with that funding year, USAC was not prepared to specify the total that would ultimately not be disbursed. However, its estimates projected that at least $172 million worth of commitments would not be invoiced.

From the previous, 2000 funding year, USAC said in the filing that it would be able to make available $387 million worth of undisbursed E-rate discounts available to reduce the amounts that would have to be collected from telecommunications carriers for the Universal Service Fund in the first quarter of 2003. Already $136.8 million from that funding year has been used to reduce collections in the current quarter.

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