On December 19th, the FCC released the Second E-rate Modernization Report and Order, lining out the official changes to the E-rate program which are a result of the December 11th vote.
Most notably, this Order has increased the overall cap of the E-rate program by $1.5 billion, providing the funding support required for the FCC’s goal to make Category Two funding available for all eligible E-rate applicants.
Other changes to the program include:
- E-rate discounts for the cost-effective purchase of wide area networks, and suspending the requirement to amortize upfront construction costs
- Increasing the Category Two budget amount for large urban libraries to $5.00/sq. ft.
- Incentivizing state support for “last-mile” broadband connections
- Establishing the Category Two budget system through 2019