On July 19, 2013, USAC announced that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved FCC-mandated changes to Forms 472 (BEAR) and 474 (SPI.) Changes to the Forms include:
- Both Forms now require that the discount rate for the FRN be listed
- BEARs now have one new applicant certification, and the wording for two existing applicant certifications has been changed
- BEARs now have one new service provider certification, and the wording for one existing service provider certification has changed
- The BEAR now includes fields for remittance information to assist service providers in remitting reimbursement payments to the applicant
- SPIs now have three new vendor certifications
- The SPI now includes fields for the authorized person’s name, title, telephone number, and address
- Both forms have minor numbering changes due to fields being moved.
Because USAC must update their online invoicing systems to accommodate the new Forms, online invoicing will be temporarily unavailable starting Monday, July 22, 2013. During this time, applicants and service providers must submit BEARs and SPIs via mail, e-mail, or fax. Additional guidance provided by USAC includes:
- The updated versions of the Forms will be available on USAC’s website on Monday, July 22, 2013. Any submission that takes place on or after July 22 must utilize the new versions of the Forms.
- Submissions via e-mail must include an attached copy of the completed Form. The subject line of the e-mail should include “BEAR Form” or “SPI Form” to indicate the type of Form being submitted. Submissions should be e-mailed to email@example.com.
- Cover sheets for Forms submitted via fax (1-888-276-8736) should indicate if the Form being submitted is a BEAR or SPI.
- BEAR forms which were submitted electronically by the applicant prior to Monday, July 22 may still be certified by the service provider after this date. BEAR forms which were created in USAC’s online system but are pending submission will not be accepted for submission on or after July 22.
- BEAR forms which were certified on paper must be postmarked prior to Monday, July 22.
- Service providers who invoice electronically using flat files have been sent further instructions via e-mail.
- USAC anticipates no delays in invoice processing during the time period when online invoicing is unavailable, and will issue payment files, BEAR notification letters, and notification e-mails as normal.
More information may be found in USAC’s Special Edition News Brief at https://apps.usac.org/sl/tools/news-briefs/preview.aspx?id=498