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Three Factors that Drive Speed of FCDLs

The first decision letters for funding year 2019 were released on April 27, 2019. Nearly 52% of all Form 471 applications submitted during the filing window were processed and included in this early group. A deeper inspection of the applications that were included – and those that were not – reveals important insights into the USAC application review process.
  • Category of service had the greatest impact on whether an application received a funding decision. 68.8% of Category One applications were included in the first wave, as opposed to 20.8% of Category Two applications. This is a difference of 48%.
  • The timing of an application, whether it was submitted early in the filing window, or near the end, had a significant role in determining if an application was funded. 74% of form 471s submitted in the first half of the filing window were in the first funding wave. That compares with 44% of applications submitted during the second half of the filing window.
  • Contract type also made a difference. 64% of existing multiyear contracts, those that had already been subject to prior years’ application review, received a decision. In contract, only 45% of new contracts were included in wave 1.
All applicants are reminded to submit paperwork in a timely fashion, as early as possible. Timing truly matters, and it is one of the few factors that applicants can impact. 

Furthermore, applicants with pending applications should take note. You may not be able to change the category of service or contract type associated with an application, but you can speed up the process by providing well-organized and clearly labeled documentation, especially when it comes to Category Two projects and new contracts.

On May 1, 2019, Funds For Learning conducted a webinar to analyze and discuss the first funding wave of 2019. The webinar is available on-demand at no charge to our clients and newsletter subscribers.
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