Historically, USAC’s Schools and Libraries Division has hosted monthly service provider conference calls, providing information and guidance for vendors participating in the E-rate program. In an effort to maximize efficiency, the SLD has developed the conference call into a monthly webinar. Highlights from the February 4th, 2015 service provider webinar include:
Form 499 Online Requirement
The deadline for filing is April 1, 2015 and USAC will be holding trainings on the new E-file system. Companies can call the USAC helpline for questions at 866-411-8722 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
FY 2015 Application Filing Window Reminders
February 26, 2015 is the last date to file a FY 2015 Form 470 and the Form 471 deadline is 11:59 EDT on March 26, 2015. The SLD is no longer accepting paper applications.
Payments for the month of January totaled $129.3 million against $157.2 million in requests. USAC processed invoices for 1,521 service providers and 97% of the invoices were processed within 30 days.
Top Denial Reasons
- Duplicate Invoice
- Billed Date Later than Invoice Date
- Total Commitment Paid
- Invalid SPIN/FRN
- Invoice Deadline Violation
Question: I need clarification on the 20% phase down for voice services. Will applicants receive 0% funding for voice services once they actually reach 0% or once they are below 20%?
Answer: The 20% phase down for voice services starts in FY 2015. Applicants will be reduced 20% from their discount rate each of the next three years. If an applicant is currently at 20% discount, that applicant will no longer be able to apply for voice services.
Question: Will there ever be a complete print preview of the FCC Form 471? It will be very difficult to review in "pieces" with clients.
Answer: The SLD was not able to develop this feature for FY 2015.
Question: If the incumbent service provider does not bid on an FCC Form 470/RFP prior to the deadline, can the applicant use a bill as a bid to evaluate with other bids received? If the answer to the above is yes and the incumbent wins the bid, can the applicant enter into a multi-year contract with the incumbent?
Answer: Yes, applicants can an invoice which acts as a response for MTM or T service, but if the applicant wants a contract the vendor will need to provide a bid response as terms and conditions change in contracts than what might be on an invoice.
Question: Is a five-year license that includes five years of support eligible?
Answer: The SLD will provide more detail soon on this question.
Note: The information above is not the official minutes from the webinar, but simply notes from Funds For Learning. The official minutes for this webinar can be found here and archived call notes can be found here.