Schools and Libraries (E-Rate)

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12/2/2016News Brief Issued


The 12/02/2016 issue of the News Brief is now available. Receive E-rate Program tips, deadline reminders, and answers to your questions in this weekly newsletter. Subscribe to it and receive it each week in your inbox.

11/22/2016E-rate Client Service Bureau Closed: Thursday, November 24 and Friday, November 25


In observance of the Thanksgiving holiday, the Schools and Libraries Program’s Client Service Bureau (CSB) will be closed on Thursday, November 24 and Friday, November 25. CSB will reopen Monday, November 28 for the regular hours of 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM ET.

11/10/2016E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: Sunday, November 13


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) and the EPC Training Site will be unavailable from 7:30-10:30 PM ET, Sunday, November 13 for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in, or to file, certify, and search for certain forms via the EPC. We apologize for any inconvenience.

11/8/2016E-rate Client Service Bureau Closed: Friday, November 11


In observance of the Veterans Day holiday, the Schools and Libraries Program’s Client Service Bureau (CSB) will be closed on Friday, November 11, 2016. CSB will reopen Monday, November 14 for regular hours of 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM ET.

11/4/2016UPDATE: Known Issues with Website Display and Certain Applications


We have resolved the majority of the issues with the website and applications. We are continuing to work on residual issues. If you encounter critical problems, please contact Website Feedback. Thank you for your patience.

11/2/2016E-File Password Reset Requests


On Saturday, October 29, 2016, we upgraded our E-File login platform to provide identity management, single sign-on, and mobility management for our applications.  As a result of this action, online password reset requests will result in an email to the user with further instructions for changing their password.  It may take up to 10 minutes for this email to be delivered to you.  We apologize for any inconvenience.

10/28/2016FCC Extends Deadline for E-rate Participants to Request Invoice Deadline Extensions


Today, the FCC released a Public Notice (DA 16-1234) extending the deadline for E-rate participants with an October 28, 2016 invoice deadline for Funding Year 2015 to request an extension of the invoice deadline due to technical problems that might have prevented parties from filing. You should submit your Funding Year 2015 extension request using the Invoice Extension Deadline Tool or the Submit a Question feature no later than Monday, October 31, 2016 at 11:59 PM ET.

10/21/2016Request an Invoice Deadline Extension with This New Tool


The deadline to submit invoices for FY2015 recurring services is October 28, 2016, for most applicants and service providers. This is also the deadline to request an invoice deadline extension. 


New Way to Request an Extension
Both applicants and service providers can now request an immediate extension of their invoice deadlines by using a new tool in the online BEAR Form or E-File system, respectively.

Applicants
Here is how to request an invoice extension:

  1. Log in to the online BEAR Form
  2. Click the Deadline Extension tab at the top of the screen.
  3. Enter the first Funding Request Number (FRN) for which you want to request a deadline extension. You can only request an extension for one FRN at a time. The screen will display the details of the FRN so that you can verify that you entered the correct FRN.
  4. Click Submit to request a deadline extension.

You will receive an automatic approval or denial message on your screen and also an email with the same message, and, if your request is approved, the FRN Extension Table will update immediately with your extended deadline.

Service Providers
Here is how to request an invoice extension:

  1. Log in to E-File.
  2. Click on the 472 Online BEAR link.
  3. Choose your SPIN and click Set. (If you have more than one SPIN, you must choose the appropriate SPIN from the dropdown list).
  4. Click the Deadline Extension tab at the top of the screen.
  5. Enter the first Funding Request Number (FRN) for which you want to request a deadline extension. You can only request an extension for one FRN at a time. The screen will display the details of the FRN so that you can verify that you entered the correct FRN.
  6. Click Submit to request a deadline extension.

You will receive an automatic approval or denial message on your screen and also an email with the same message, and, if your request is approved, the FRN Extension Table will update immediately with your extended deadline.


NB: The automatic response email will come from the sender "no-reply" and the domain "solixinc.com," so the email may be blocked if you do not add this information to your safe senders list.


10/4/2016E-rate Applicant Training – Buena Vista Still Happening


The E-rate Applicant Training in Buena Vista this Thursday, October 6, 2016,will take place as scheduled. It has not been cancelled. Please visit our 2016 Applicant Training: Buena Vista web page for any updates on this event's status. We look forward to seeing you there!

9/26/2016Sept. 27 Service Provider Webinar Canceled


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program weekly webinar for service providers scheduled for Tuesday, September 27, 2016, is canceled. We apologize for the inconvenience.

9/22/2016Special Edition News Brief - Update on EPC Known Issues


The 09/22/2016 Special Edition issue of the News Brief is now available. Receive E-rate Program tips, deadline reminders, and answers to your questions in this weekly newsletter. Subscribe to it and receive it each week in your inbox.

9/20/2016USAC Unveils FRN Status Tool


USAC launched a new tool to display information about funding request numbers (FRNs) for FY2016 and future funding years.

See the tool! Funding Request Number (FRN) Status Tool
FRN Status Tool instructions

The FRN Status Tool, has a look and feel similar to that of the Data Retrieval Tool (DRT), but it provides more choices than the DRT of information that can be retrieved.

Functionality Roll-Out
This tool will be rolled out in two phases:

  • Phase I: "Standard Report": The first phase, which we just launched, follows the "Standard Report" format of the current DRT – a specific set of fields that is always returned based on the search criteria selected. This is the version of the FRN Status Tool that is available now. 
  • Phase II: "Select Data Points": The second phase will follow the "Select Data Points" format in the current DRT, which allows the user to select one, some, or all of the fields from a menu of specific fields – again, based on the search criteria selected. This version is currently under development and should be available in the near future. 

Usefulness for Service Providers
Service providers can type in their 498 ID/SPIN and from there, will be able to see committed amounts and the FCC Form 486 service start dates. This information will be helpful for invoicing purposes. You can also find instructions on using the FRN Status Tool to perform a "Standard Report" on the USAC website. Note that the search results are always returned at the FRN level, one line per FRN. The tool instructions also include the list of FCC Form 471 review statuses together with their definitions.

9/12/2016FCC Releases FY2017 Eligible Services List


On Monday, September 12, 2016, the Federal Communications Commission issued an FCC Order (DA 16-1023) releasing the Eligible Services List for Funding Year 2017.

8/30/2016Invitation to E-rate Program Applicant Trainings


Join USAC at an all-day Applicant Training for schools, libraries, and consortia that apply to the Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program. Each training is identical; please select only one.

Register early to secure your spot - these complimentary events are very popular and have limited space.
 

8/12/2016Weekly Service Provider Webinars Begin August 16


Beginning August 16, 2016, USAC will host weekly webinars for service providers each Tuesday from noon to 1:00 PM ET.

These webinars replace the weekly Tuesday conference calls (currently held from noon to 1:00 PM ET) and the monthly webinars (currently held on the first Wednesday of the month from 3:00 to 4:00 PM ET).

All service providers are invited to attend the weekly Tuesday webinars, which will cover E-rate Program updates and information relevant to service providers. Registration each week is complimentary, and required. We look forward to having you join us!

How to Register for a Webinar 
Visit the Service Provider Webinar page on our website, or use the link in your reminder/agenda email to register. You must register separately for each week’s webinar. Doing so will allow you to submit questions and receive the agenda in advance. If you don't have a question to submit in advance, you can simply register at the time that you log in and view the agenda at that time.

After you register, you will receive a confirmation email with information about joining the webinar, including a personalized URL. Please do not forward your confirmation email to others; the URL it contains is unique to you. To share the event with others, forward the entire reminder/agenda email from USAC or direct them to the Monthly Webinars web page.

Tips for Joining Your First Webinar
USAC recommends logging in a few minutes early for the first webinar to allow extra time to connect to the webinar service.

When you join for the first time, you'll be prompted to download and run a file called "CitrixLauncher.exe." After you download this file, it will be faster to join future webinars. For more details, visit instructions to download the launcher file on the GoToWebinar support website.

To join the webinar on your mobile device, download the free GoToMeeting App (available for iPhone, Android, and Windows) in advance for quick access.

8/12/2016Save the Date! E-rate Program Applicant Training


Mark your calendars! Registration will be opening soon for the E-rate Program Applicant Trainings. These full-day trainings are intended for schools, libraries, and consortia that apply to the Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program. 

More details and registration will be available soon in the Training & Outreach section of our website. To be notified when registration is available, make sure you're subscribed to the SL News Brief.

2016 training locations and dates: 

  • Washington, DC - Monday, September 26, 2016 
  • Orlando, FL - Thursday, October 6, 2016 
  • Houston, TX - Friday, October 14, 2016 
  • Philadelphia, PA - Tuesday, October 18, 2016 
  • Minneapolis, MN - Tuesday, November 1, 2016 
  • St. Louis, MO - Thursday, November 10, 2016 
  • Seattle, WA - Wednesday, November 16, 2016 
  • Los Angeles, CA - Friday, November 18, 2016 

8/11/2016E-rate Program Service Provider Updates


Starting today, all subscriber to the "E-rate Program Service Providers" list, will receive news updates and guidance for service providers from USAC in addition to the webinar reminders.

We hope you find the emails about the E-rate Program to be informative and helpful with your program participation!

8/8/2016Special Edition News Brief - Update on Invoicing and Payment Processes for FY2016


The 08/08/2016 Special Edition issue of the News Brief is now available. Receive E-rate Program tips, deadline reminders, and answers to your questions in this weekly newsletter. Subscribe to it and receive it each week in your inbox.