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News Archive

USAC's News Archive gives you access to all announcements related to the universal service programs as they were made throughout the years. The archives will be updated as new announcements are made.


  

12/22/2018News Brief Issued


The 12/22/2018 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.

12/21/2018Special Edition News Brief - FY2019 Application Filing Window Opens January 16, 2019


A Special Edition issue of the News Brief (12/21/2018) 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.

12/21/2018Online Applicant Training Series Now Available


Today, we launched the first of a new online training series which provides an online, self-paced learning option for those program participants who were unable to attend our fall training events or who want a refresher. 

The online applicant training series is now available in our Online Learning Library. A service provider training series will be available in 2019. We encourage you to view the offerings in this series and let us know what you think by using the evaluation at the end of each training module.

12/21/2018Lifeline Program Newsletter - December 2018


The December 2018 issue of Lifeline Program News is now available. Sign up to receive the newsletter by email in the Subscription Center.

December headlines:

  • FCC and USAC Announce National Verifier Full Launch Date for Launch 2 States and Territory
  • National Verifier Live in Four Additional States
  • National Verifier Outreach Lists - Sign up for Future Launch Information
  • FCC Form 555 Updates and Reminders
  • 2019 Webinar Schedule Now Available


12/20/2018E-rate Client Service Bureau Closed: December 24-25


In observance of the Christmas holiday, the Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program’s Client Service Bureau (CSB) will be closed on Monday, December 24, 2018 and Tuesday, December 25, 2018. CSB will reopen Wednesday, December 26, 2018 for the regular hours of 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET.

12/20/2018Legacy System Outage Due to System Maintenance - December 20


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program legacy systems will be unavailable from 6:00-11:00 p.m. ET on Thursday, December 20 for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to file invoices and use some of the search tools. The BEAR training site will also be unavailable. We apologize for any inconvenience.

 

NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will not be affected by this maintenance.

12/20/2018Call Center Holiday Hours


In observance of the Christmas and New Year’s Day holidays, the High Cost and Rural Health Care call center and the E-rate Client Service Bureau (CSB) will be closed on Monday, December 24, Tuesday, December 25, and Tuesday, January 1. Normal operating hours will resume following these dates from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET.

The Lifeline Support Center will be closed Tuesday, December 25 and Tuesday, January 1. Normal operating hours will resume following these dates from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. ET. 

12/18/2018December 2018 Contributor Invoice Summary Now Available Online


The December 2018 invoice summary for contributors is now online and available for filers to view in E-File. 

Watch this quick video to learn how to access your online invoice summary

12/17/2018Preparing for FY2019 - Webinar Recording Now Available


If you missed the Preparing for Funding Year (FY) 2019 webinar on December 12, 2018, you can use this link to register and watch a recording. This webinar was designed to help applicants and service providers prepare for the Funding Year 2019 application filing window. 

Recommended for: Applicants and service providers

E-rate Experience Level: All levels

12/14/2018Focus on Participant Experience


USAC is continuing its ongoing efforts to better serve E-rate participants by adding extra applicant and service provider support and implementing enhancements to improve the experience for the E-rate community. As the end of the calendar year approaches, while we are committed to addressing as many open participant issues as possible before 2019, we appreciate the E-rate community’s patience and cooperation as we work open cases.

 

Some of these open cases may require a change in reviewers once USAC transitions to its new vendor for E-rate business process operations later this month. All review activities, including program integrity assurance (PIA), appeals, funding commitment waves and payments, will continue during the transition.

 

USAC will reach out to E-rate participants that have active applications, invoices or post-commitment requests, to share additional information about any changes related to the transition to the new vendor. We will continue to share information with affected participants by email, especially if the transition to the new vendor will impact those participants’ open E-rate activities. For example, beginning in January, all open forms and requests (including invoices, appeals and post-commitment requests) will be assigned to new reviewers.

 

USAC is aware that some E-rate participants have open, inactive forms and requests pending with the program. These items will also transition to the new team and participants will receive outreach at a later time.

 

We appreciate the support and cooperation of the E-rate community as we work with our new vendor on these adjustments.

12/14/2018News Brief Issued


The 12/14/2018 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.

12/14/2018FCC Announces 1st Quarter 2019 Contribution Factor Decrease to 20.0 Percent


The FCC released a Public Notice (DA 18-1100   ) announcing that the proposed universal service contribution factor for the first quarter (January - March) of 2019 will be .200 or 20.0 percent

12/13/2018Legacy System Outage Due to System Maintenance - December 13


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program legacy systems will be unavailable from 6:00-9:00 p.m. ET on Thursday, December 13 for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to file invoices and use some of the search tools. The BEAR training site will also be unavailable. We apologize for any inconvenience.

 

NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will not be affected by this maintenance.

12/13/2018Hard Launch Date for Second Launch States


Today, Thursday, December 13 the FCC and USAC announced that the Lifeline National Eligibility Verifier (National Verifier) will fully launch in the second launch states and territory on Tuesday, January 15, 2019. Beginning on that date, service providers in Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, New Hampshire, North Dakota, and South Dakota must use the National Verifier to check the eligibility of all Lifeline applicants before enrolling them in the program.

At full launch of the National Verifier, consumers in those five states and one territory who wish to apply for Lifeline directly through the National Verifier can use the consumer portal or submit a paper application directly to the Lifeline Support Center.

To learn more about Lifeline and the National Verifier, visit USAC's National Verifier page. 

12/12/2018Focus on Participant Experience


In 2018, USAC improved the E-rate Program's operational efficiency by refining EPC to process applications more quickly and adjust to large volumes. As we look toward 2019, we will build on those advances with a steady focus on strengthening the E-rate participant experience.

 

We will serve participants better by adding extra applicant and service provider support, transitioning our E-rate business process operations and implementing enhancements to create a better experience for the E-rate community. USAC has expanded our participant support teams to ensure a smooth and orderly transition process with minimal impacts on the E-rate community.

 

E-rate participants with open applications, invoices or post-commitment requests will receive additional information to help guide them through the transition. USAC is working hard to address as many open participant issues as we can before the end of the year, and we appreciate the E-rate community's patience as we analyze and work open cases.

 

Most participants will not notice any changes in their E-rate experience during the transition and will see customer service improvements when it is complete.

12/12/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: December 16-17


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) and the EPC training site will be unavailable from Sunday, December 16 at 7:00 p.m ET through Monday, December 17 at 1:00 a.m. ET for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. We apologize for any inconvenience.

12/11/2018NLAD December Monthly Maintenance Canceled


The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) December maintenance was canceled. Users will be able to access NLAD pre-production and production environments on Friday, December 14 as usual.

12/10/2018My Portal Outage Due to System Maintenance Wednesday, December 12


Rural Health Care's My Portal will be unavailable from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. on Wednesday, December 12, 2018 due to system maintenance. Online forms will not be accessible for health care providers or service providers. We apologize for any inconvenience.

12/7/2018News Brief Issued


The 12/7/2018 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.

12/7/2018Newsletter for December 2018


FY2019 Filing Window Dates Announced!

The initial filing window period for FY2019 is February 1 – May 31, 2019. This means that you must submit your funding requests (FCC Forms 462 and/or 466) between February 1 and 11:59 p.m. ET May 31, 2019 for funding consideration. We highly encourage you to submit your funding requests as early as possible in the filing window period. You can begin the application process and submit all other application forms for FY2019 (FCC Forms 460, 461, or 465) before February 1.

If the total amount of qualifying funding requests received during the initial filing window period for FY2019 does not exceed available RHC Program funding, we will determine if there will be additional filing windows.

Update on FY2018

RHC has begun issuing decisions on FY2018 funding requests, and will continue to do so on a rolling basis. RHC will communicate any updates via the email addresses the applicant has submitted in My Portal. Due to demand for RHC Program funds, there will not be a second filing window period for FY2018. The RHC Program will not accept additional funding requests (FCC Forms 462 or 466) for FY2018. All qualifying single year funding requests with no upfront costs will be fully funded for FY2018 with no proration.

My Portal continues to accept Telecom Program FCC Form 467 (Connection Certification Form) and Healthcare Connect Fund (HCF) Program FCC Form 463 (Invoice and Request for Disbursement Form) for applicants approved for funding in FY2017. 

HCF Program Invoicing Deadline Approaching

Please keep in mind that 11:59 p.m. ET December 31, 2018 is the last day to submit the FCC Form 463 to USAC if you had a funding commitment end date of June 30, 2018. Don't know when your HCF Program invoicing deadline is? Use the look-up tool on our website! Download the Invoicing Deadline Spreadsheet.

Watch the latest HCF Program Invoicing Webinar! This webinar covered how to submit the FCC Form 463 for healthcare providers (HCPs) and service providers. Watch the webinar and download the slides here. Watch our step-by-step invoicing guide video series. These videos go over the submission process of the FCC Form 463, and we highly recommend viewing them if you are submitting your FCC Form 463 for the first time or just simply need a refresher in anticipation of an upcoming deadline: Individual HCPs, Consortia.

FCC Form 461 Rollover for FY2019

This year’s rollover functionality is a courtesy extended to HCF applicants who completed the Request for Services or FCC Form 461 process in FY2018 and would like to use the FY2018 approved FCC Form 461 in FY2019.

 

Those requesting the FY2018 FCC Form 461 rollover functionality must meet the following requirements:

  • The FCC Form 461 must have been submitted for FY2018, and previously reviewed and approved by RHC in FY2018.
  • The FY2018 FCC Form 461 and/or competitive bidding process must have complied with competitive bidding rules.

Applicants requesting the FCC Form 461 rollover understand that their FY2019 FCC Form 462 may be denied if the FY2018 FCC Form 461 and/or competitive bidding process is found to have been in violation of competitive bidding rules.

The rollover process will only be applied to the FCC Form 461, and not the FCC Form 462. Applicants must still submit a FY2019 FCC Form 462 if they wish to apply for HCF Program funding in FY2019.

How to submit your FCC Form 461 rollover request:

  • Send email to: RHC-Assist@usac.org 
  • Subject line of email: FCC Form 461 Rollover Request App #
  • Include within the email body: HCP #, FCC Form 461 application #
  • Once emailed, the rollover request may take 5-8 business days to review and process.
  • If approved, your request will be confirmed via email from an RHC staff member.

Upcoming My Portal Updates for FY2017 Invoices (HCF Program)

A mid-December deployment will show true-up payments* in the “FCC Form 463” tab for HCPs and the “USAC Review” tab for service providers. For HCPs, true-up payments are indicated by an invoice number starting with “2017” with the date they were distributed in the “Last Edited” column. For service providers, the true-up invoice number begins with “2017” and in the “Vendor/Applicant Invoice Number” column, any true-up payments will read “True up + the original vendor invoice number.” For screenshots and a verbal explanation, please watch our FY2017 Invoicing Best Practices webinar.

*True-up payments were off- cycle payments issued when the FCC released their most recent RHC Program Order raising the cap for FY2017, which fully funded all previously pro-rated qualifying funding requests. The true-up payments covered the difference between payments already made and the adjusted amounts without the proration. True-up payments only applied to applicants who received a commitment for FY2017.

PQA Requests for Information Are Going Out

The 2018 Payment Quality Assurance (PQA) assessment program is underway. PQA is a program that assesses RHC Program payments made on invoices submitted during the past 12 months to verify that the payments were properly made – in other words, that all program rules were followed correctly when the payment was authorized and disbursed.

For disbursements made each month, a certain number of payments will be chosen, and applicants will be asked to provide specific documentation – for example, customer bills that support invoices submitted to USAC to verify that those payments were made correctly. It is important that you maintain proper documentation in order to be able to respond correctly and completely to PQA requests.

The email notifying applicants whose payments have been selected for PQA were sent in December from the domain name usac.i-sight.com. Please check your email and respond promptly if you receive an email request from USAC's PQA Program. Also check your spam folder or junk email folder to see if it contains an email from this domain. This will help expedite your review.

  • Do not hesitate to contact your reviewer if you have questions. Contact information is provided in the email.
  • Also, contact your PQA reviewer if you are unable to respond by the deadline. 

 

Winter Training Series Dates Announced!

We highly recommend attending our upcoming online training series, specifically designed to prepare applicants for the FY2019 filing window. These trainings are filled with resources, useful information, best practices, what to expect from the USAC review process and more! Attending these trainings is the best way to prepare for the FY2019 filing window.

 

  • Request for Services Webinar: Wednesday December 12, 2018 at 2 p.m. ET. Get ready for the start of the FY2019 filing window period by joining our Request for Services Best Practices webinar. We will focus on the FCC Forms 461 and 465 process and participants will be able to ask questions: Register here.   
  • Funding Request Webinar: Date January 16, 2019 at 2:00 p.m. ET Join us to prepare for FY2019. This webinar will focus on the FCC Forms 462 and 466: Register here.

 

Important Reminders

Program Eligibility Best Practices Webinar

On November 29, 2018, the RHC Program Team hosted an RHC Program Eligibility webinar. This webinar covered best practices for submitting the first form in the RHC Program process: the FCC Form 460 (for the HCF Program) and the FCC Form 465 (for the Telecom Program). The webinar recording and slides will be posted to our Online Learning Library soon!

Watch RHC 101

On September 26, 2018 the RHC Program Team hosted RHC 101: An Introduction to the RHC Program webinar. This webinar covered the basics of the program including eligibility requirements and how to get started. Were you unable to make it? The recording and slides are posted on our website here.

What to Do if You Receive an Information Request

Applicants must upload all required documentation with the submission of their FCC Forms 462 or 466. FCC Forms submitted with incomplete or missing documentation will not be reviewed, and RHC reviewers will reach out to all account holders (the primary and all secondary and tertiary account holders associated with that HCP) with a request for additional information (“Information Request”). Information Requests are sent to collect any missing documentation, address deficiencies, or to ask clarifying questions about the FCC Form. If you receive an Information Request, you must respond to it within 14 calendar days. Once you respond, the RHC reviewers will work with you, to the extent they can, to ensure that they have all the necessary documentation to complete their review. Failure to respond within the 14 calendar day timeframe will result in an automatic denial, so be sure to meet that deadline! 

LOA/TPAs Must Be Up to Date

In order to be considered eligible for funding in FY2018, Letters of Agency (LOA) and Third Party Authorizations (TPA) must be up to date through a minimum of FY2018. Be especially mindful if you are an HCP using a consultant, a consortium leader, or a consultant filing on behalf of a consortium leader. Before submitting a form, please check to ensure your authorization documents are up to date.

FCC Forms 462 and 466 submitted with expired LOAs or TPAs will result in applicants receiving Information Requests.

For more information about submitting LOAs, please see the submission guide

12/3/2018FUSF Reseller Certification Template Now Available


USAC has developed a template for wholesale carriers to obtain information from their resale customers regarding the status of their contributions to the federal Universal Service Fund (USF) on the revenue associated with the specific service(s) provided to resellers.

You can find the template on our Handouts and Reference page

This template is provided as a voluntary resource only.  Companies can develop their own template for documentation purposes related to revenue reported in Block 300 of the FCC Form 499-A. 

12/3/2018PQA Requests for Information Are Going Out


The 2018 Payment Quality Assurance (PQA) assessment program is underway. PQA is a program that assesses RHC Program payments made on invoices submitted during the past 12 months to verify that the payments were properly made – in other words, that all program rules were followed correctly when the payment was authorized and disbursed.

For disbursements made each month, a certain number of payments will be chosen, and applicants will be asked to provide specific documentation – for example, customer bills that support invoices submitted to USAC – to verify that those payments were made correctly. It is important that you maintain proper documentation in order to be able to respond correctly and completely to PQA requests.

The email request notifying applicants whose payments have been selected for PQA are being sent in December from the domain name usac.i-sight.com. Please check your email and respond promptly if you receive an email from USAC's PQA Program. Also check your spam folder or junk email folder to see if it contains an email from this domain. This will help expedite your review.

  • Do not hesitate to contact your reviewer if you have questions. Contact information is provided in the email.
  • Also, contact your PQA reviewer if you are unable to respond by the deadline.  

11/30/2018News Brief Issued


The 11/30/2018 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.

11/29/2018Legacy System Outage Due to System Maintenance - November 29


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program legacy systems will be unavailable from 6:00-8:00 p.m. ET on Thursday, November 29 for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to file invoices and use some of the search tools. The BEAR training site will also be unavailable. We apologize for any inconvenience.

 

NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will not be affected by this maintenance.

11/28/20182018 E-rate Service Provider Training - December 3-5


USAC’s annual service provider trainings will take place at USAC’s office located at 700 12th Street NW, Suite 900, Washington, DC 20005 on December 3-5, 2018. For those of you joining us at USAC next week, here are a few tips and reminders to help you prepare for the training.

December 3 and December 5 are identical full-day trainings designed for participants of all proficiency levels; attendees should be registered for only one of these two trainings. December 4 is a half-day afternoon training specifically for beginner participants who want the very basics of the program. Attendees must attend the session(s) for which they are confirmed as registered. To reiterate, training dates and times are:

  • Monday, December 3: 9:00 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. (general session for all proficiency levels)
  • Tuesday, December 4: 12:30 p.m.- 4:30 p.m. (beginner session covering program basics)
  • Wednesday, December 5: 9:00 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. (repeat of general session for all proficiency levels)

Registration: Registration opens 30 minutes before the day’s training as noted above. Please bring a photo ID. The name on USAC’s registration records must match the name of the person who attends the training. We are at full capacity and will not be able to accommodate walk-in registrations.

Check-in Process:

  1. Enter the 12th Street lobby at 700 12th St. NW, Washington, DC 20005.
  2. Go to USAC’s registration desk in the lobby to check in and receive your name badge and training agenda. 
  3. Then, go to the security desk in the lobby to receive your security pass.
  4. A USAC representative by the elevators will guide you to the training event.

NOTE: If you are attending two days of training, you will need to check in with USAC and receive a security pass at the beginning of each day.

Download the Training Materials: Training materials are available on our website. We will be going paperless this year, and will not have printouts. Please plan accordingly.

Food: Attendees should make their own arrangements for meals. USAC will provide recommendations for nearby breakfast and lunch options within short walking distance, of which there are many.

We look forward to seeing you next week. For more information on our fall training events, please reference our 2018 Applicant & Service Provider Trainings page.

 

11/27/2018FCC and USAC Announce National Verifier Third Launch


On Tuesday, December 4, Missouri, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Tennessee will soft launch in the National Verifier. At that time, service providers in these states can check consumers’ Lifeline eligibility using the National Verifier service provider portal and paper applications.

The National Verifier will have automated connections to check program eligibility for the programs listed below. Consumers who cannot be found in the automated database or who qualify using other eligibility programs or income can submit documentation to demonstrate eligibility.  

  • Missouri: SNAP, Medicaid, Federal Public Housing
  • North Carolina: SNAP, Federal Public Housing
  • Pennsylvania: SNAP, Medicaid, Federal Public Housing
  • Tennessee: SNAP, Federal Public Housing 


During the soft launch period, service providers can continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures if they choose.

About the National Verifier
The National Verifier shifts the responsibility for determining a consumer's Lifeline eligibility from phone and internet service providers to the program's administrator, the Universal Service Administrative Company. The National Verifier will establish whether a consumer is eligible by electronically querying state and federal data sources, and if necessary, manually reviewing supporting documents. An overview of the National Verifier can be found on USAC's website.

Service providers who do business in any of the states listed above who did not receive an email about National Verifier training schedule for Launch 3 should email LifelineProgram@usac.org to be added to the National Verifier Launch 3 training list.

11/26/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) *TRAINING SITE* Outage Due to System Maintenance: November 26


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) *TRAINING SITE* will be unavailable on Monday, November 26 from 3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. ET for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use the training site. We apologize for any inconvenience.

11/20/2018Updating Applicant Profiles - Webinar Recording Now Available


If you missed the Updating Applicant Profiles webinar on November 20, 2018, you can use this link to register and watch a recording.This webinar was designed to help applicants update their E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) profiles in preparation for the Funding Year 2019 application filing window. The presentation provides an introduction to entity profiles, including information about what profile data should be updated during the administrative window.

Recommended for: New applicants and applicants that want to review the basic elements of entity profiles and administrative window updates

E-rate Experience Level: Beginner

11/20/2018December Webinar - Registration is Now Open


Join USAC for the monthly E-rate Program webinar. In December, we will discuss how to prepare for the Funding Year (FY) 2019 application filing window.

 

Preparing for FY2019 – December 12, 2018 at 3:00 p.m. ETRegister Today

This webinar is designed to help applicants and service providers prepare for the FY2019 application filing window.

Recommended for: Applicants and service providers

E-rate Experience Level: All levels

11/19/2018November 2018 Contributor Invoice Summary Now Available Online


The November 2018 invoice summary for contributors is now online and available for filers to view in E-File. 

Watch this quick video to learn how to access your online invoice summary

11/19/2018E-rate Client Service Bureau Closed: Thursday, November 22 and Friday, November 23


In observance of the Thanksgiving holiday, the Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program’s Client Service Bureau (CSB) will be closed on Thursday, November 22 and Friday, November 23. CSB will reopen Monday, November 26 for the regular hours of 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM ET.

11/19/2018 Lifeline Program Newsletter - November 2018


The November 2018 issue of Lifeline Program News is now available. Sign up to receive the newsletter by email in the Subscription Center.

November headlines:

  • Minimum Service Standards Increase December 1
  • Sign Up for Future Launch National Verifier Outreach Lists
  • National Verifier Full Launch in Initial Launch States
  • Webinar on December 12: FCC Form 555

11/16/2018News Brief Issued


The 11/16/2018 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.

11/16/2018FCC Releases FY2019 Eligible Services List


On November 16, 2018, in Public Notice DA 18-1173, the FCC released the Eligible Services List (ESL) for Funding Year (FY) 2019. Appendix A contains a list of commenters, and Appendix B contains the ESL itself.

11/16/2018Legacy System Outage Due to System Maintenance - November 16-17


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program legacy systems will be unavailable from 9:00 p.m. ET on Friday, November 16 through 10:00 a.m. ET on Saturday, November 17 for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to file invoices and use some of the search tools. The BEAR training site will also be unavailable. NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will not be affected by this outage. We apologize for any inconvenience.

11/15/2018Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance, Nov. 16 & Nov. 27.


NLAD, National Verifier, and LCS Scheduled System Maintenance, November 16
 
The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD), National Verifier, and the Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable for use due to scheduled system maintenance starting Friday, November 16 at 10 p.m. until Saturday, November 17 at 2 a.m. ET.

NLAD, National Verifier, and LCS pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

Additional National Verifier Pre-Prod Scheduled System Maintenance, November 16

The National Verifier pre-production environment will be unavailable for use starting Friday, November 16 at 3 p.m. until 5 p.m. ET.

The National Verifier's pre-production environment will not be available for use during this time.

Users of NLAD’s National Verifier workflow will not be able to enroll, transfer, or update subscriber information in NLAD’s pre-production environment. NLAD UI and API users can continue to access reports and perform de-enrollments during this time.

After this outage, users will be able to test the collection of latitude and longitude coordinates to resolve AMS failures in the pre-production environment. On Tuesday, December 4, National Verifier users will see this change in the production environment and must provide latitude and longitude coordinates to resolve AMS failures for online applications.

National Verifier Scheduled System Maintenance, November 27

The National Verifier will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Tuesday, November 27 at 8 p.m. until 10 p.m. ET. Certain functionality in NLAD will also be impacted.

The National Verifier’s pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

Users of NLAD’s National Verifier workflow will not be able to enroll, transfer, or update subscriber information in NLAD’s pre-production and production environments. NLAD UI and API users can continue to access reports and perform de-enrollments during this time.

11/14/2018Register for the RHC Program Winter Training Series!


Over the next few months, the RHC Program will host a series of webinars in preparation for FY2019. These comprehensive webinars will cover the application process from start to finish and include eligibility, request for services, and funding request best practices. Whether you are a new applicant or just need a refresher on the forms, these webinars are the best way to prepare for the upcoming funding year!

 

November 29 2:00 p.m. ET – RHC Program Eligibility Best Practices Webinar – Register here!

December 12 2:00 p.m. ET – RHC Program Request for Services Best Practices Webinar – Register here!

January 16 2:00 p.m. ET -- RHC Program Funding Request Best Practices Webinar – Register here!


After the discussion of the agenda items, RHC Program staff will accept questions from the audience. Participants are encouraged to submit questions in advance using the webinar registration form.

Can't attend the live webinars? All webinar recordings will be made available on our website in the Online Learning Library.


11/14/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: November 18-19


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) and the EPC training site will be unavailable from Sunday, November 18 at 7:00 p.m ET through Monday, November 19 at 1:00 a.m. ET for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. 

We apologize for any inconvenience.

11/9/2018News Brief Issued


The 11/9/2018 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.

11/9/2018My Portal Outage Due to System Maintenance Thursday, November 29


Rural Health Care's My Portal will be unavailable from 8:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 29, 2018 due to system maintenance. Online forms will not be accessible for health care providers or service providers. We apologize for any inconvenience.

11/9/2018Scheduled System Maintenance Wednesday, November 14


The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD), National Verifier, and Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Wednesday, November 14, from 10 p.m. until 2 a.m. ET

NLAD, National Verifier, and LCS pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

11/9/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: November 9-10


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will be unavailable from Friday, November 9 at 8:00 p.m ET through Saturday, November 10 at 2:00 a.m. ET for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. We apologize for any inconvenience.

11/2/2018News Brief Issued


The 11/2/2018 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.

11/1/2018Newsletter for November 2018


No Additional Filing Window Periods for FY2018

Due to demand for RHC Program funds, there will not be a second filing window period for FY2018. The RHC Program will not accept additional funding requests (FCC Forms 462 or 466) for FY2018. All qualifying single year funding requests with no upfront costs will be fully funded for FY2018 with no proration. Please keep in mind that FY2018 funding requests are still in review and commitment decisions have not yet been released. RHC will communicate any updates via the email addresses the applicant has submitted in My Portal.

 

My Portal continues to accept Telecom Program FCC Form 467 (Connection Certification Form) and Healthcare Connect Fund (HCF) Program FCC Form 463 (Invoice and Request for Disbursement Form) for applicants approved for funding in FY2017. 

HCF Program Invoicing Deadline Approaching

Please keep in mind that 11:59 p.m. ET December 31, 2018 is the last day to submit the FCC Form 463 to USAC if you had a funding commitment end date of June 30, 2018.

Don't know when your HCF Program invoicing deadline is? Use the look-up tool on our website! Download the Invoicing Deadline Spreadsheet.

Register for the Invoicing Best Practices Webinar on November 15! This webinar will cover how to submit the FCC Form 463 for healthcare providers (HCPs) and service providers. It contains helpful tips, best practices, what to expect from the USAC review process, and more!

Watch our step-by-step invoicing guide video series. These videos go over the submission process of the FCC Form 463, and we highly recommend viewing them if you are submitting your FCC Form 463 for the first time or just simply need a refresher in anticipation of an upcoming deadline: Individual HCPs, Consortia

Winter Training Series Dates Announced!

?We highly recommend attending our upcoming online training series, specifically designed to prepare applicants for the FY2019 filing window. These trainings are filled with resources, useful information, best practices, what to expect from the USAC review process and more! Attending these trainings is the best way to prepare for the FY2019 filing window.

  • Eligibility Webinar: Thursday November 29, 2018 at 2 p.m. ET. Ready to apply to the RHC Program? Join our Eligibility Best Practices webinar to learn how to submit the first form in the application process, the FCC Form 460 or 465. Register here.
  • Request for Services Webinar: Wednesday December 12, 2018 at 2 p.m. ET. Get ready for the start of the FY2019 filing window period by joining our Request for Services Best Practices webinar. We will focus on the FCC Forms 461 and 465 process and participants will be able to ask questions: Register here.   

RHC Program Funding Cap Order

On June 25, 2018, the FCC issued an Order that adopted rules to: (1) increase the annual RHC Program funding cap to $571 million and apply it to FY2017; (2) annually adjust the RHC Program funding cap for inflation, beginning with FY2018; and (3) establish a process to carry-forward unused funds from past funding years for use in future funding years. The rules became effective upon publication of the Order in the Federal Register on June 29, 2018.

Watch the 2018 RHC Program Funding Cap Order Information Webinar and download the FAQ Sheet.

What this means for FY2017: Due to the increase in the RHC Program funding cap for FY2017, all previously approved FY2017 funding requests will receive 100% of their approved funding amount. The proration that was previously applied to FY2017 funding commitments has been removed, and revised Funding Commitment Letters (FCLs) have been issued via email. If you have not received your revised FY2017 FCL or have questions about it, please contact RHC-Assist@usac.org.

Please log in to My Portal and make sure you are up to date with your FY2017 invoices. If you have questions about the invoicing process, please look at our program invoicing pages for additional information: HCF Invoicing Page and Telecom Invoicing Page.

What this means for FY2018: As noted in the FCC’s 2018 RHC Program Funding Cap Order, the RHC Program funding cap for FY2018 will be $581 million, adjusted for inflation. As a reminder, the FY2018 filing window closed on Friday, June 29, 2018. Applicants are currently unable to submit funding requests for FY2018.

Revised FY2017 HCP Support Schedules (HSS) Distributed

HCPs and service providers in the Telecom Program were emailed revised FY2017 HCP Support Schedules, which now reflect the 100% support amount (no proration).

Access Your Revised FY2017 FCL in My Portal

The Revised FY2017 Funding Commitment Letters (FCLs) you received via email are now also available in My Portal. Download the How to Find Your FCL in My Portal Tip Sheet for more information on accessing your FCL.

 

Important Reminders for FY2018

Watch RHC 101

On September 26, the RHC Program Team hosted RHC 101: An Introduction to the RHC Program webinar. This webinar covered the basics of the program including eligibility requirements and how to get started. Were you unable to make it? The recording and slides are posted on our website here.

What to Do if You Receive an Information Request

Applicants must upload all required documentation with the submission of their FCC Forms 462 or 466. FCC Forms submitted with incomplete or missing documentation will not be reviewed, and RHC reviewers will reach out to all account holders (the primary and all secondary and tertiary account holders associated with that HCP) with a request for additional information (“Information Request”). Information Requests are sent to collect any missing documentation, address deficiencies, or to ask clarifying questions about the FCC Form. If you receive an Information Request, you must respond to it within 14 calendar days. Once you respond, the RHC reviewers will work with you, to the extent they can, to ensure that they have all the necessary documentation to complete their review. Failure to respond within the 14 calendar day timeframe will result in an automatic denial, so be sure to meet that deadline! 

LOA/TPAs Must Be Up to Date

In order to be considered eligible for funding in FY2018, Letters of Agency (LOA) and Third Party Authorizations (TPA) must be up to date through a minimum of FY2018. Be especially mindful if you are an HCP using a consultant, a consortium leader, or a consultant filing on behalf of a consortium leader. Before submitting a form, please check to ensure your authorization documents are up to date.

FCC Forms 462 and 466 submitted with expired LOAs or TPAs will result in applicants receiving Information Requests.

For more information about submitting LOAs, please see the submission guide

11/1/2018Register for the HCF Program Invoicing Webinar November 15!


Register for the Invoicing Best Practices Webinar on November 15! This webinar will cover how to submit the FCC Form 463 for healthcare providers (HCPs) and service providers. It contains helpful tips, best practices, what to expect from the USAC review process, and more!

10/29/2018Lifeline Program Newsletter - October 2018


The October 2018 issue of Lifeline Program News is now available. Sign up to receive the newsletter by email in the Subscription Center.

October headlines:

  • Only Enter Test Data in NLAD Pre-Production Environment
  • Documentation Reminder for TPIV Dispute Resolution Error Code T18  
  • FCC and USAC Announce National Verifier Full Launch Date for Initial Launch States
  • National Verifier Live in Five Additional States and One Territory 
  • Keep Companies Near Me Tool Up-to-Date 
  • Minimum Service Standards Increase December 1 
  • Webinar on December 12: FCC Form 555 

10/29/2018Scheduled System Maintenance Tuesday, October 30


The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD), National Verifier, and Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Tuesday, October 30 from 10 p.m. until 11 p.m. ET.

NLAD, National Verifier, and LCS pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

10/26/2018News Brief Issued


The 10/26/2018 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.

10/26/2018NLAD, LCS and National Verifier Service Fully Restored


Service to the National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) and the Lifeline Claims System (LCS) has been fully restored. Access to all features and functionalities, including reports is working as usual.

 

Users should no longer experience issues performing eligibility verifications in the National Verifier service provider portal.

 

We apologize for the inconvenience that this disruption may have caused.  

10/25/20182018 Fall Webinars - Registration is Now Open


Join USAC for our live training webinarsthis fall. Our upcoming webinars will provide guidance on basic E-rate Productivity Center(EPC) navigation for new applicants, how to update an applicant profile, and how all program participants can prepare for the upcoming application filing window.   

 

October Webinar: EPC 101 for Applicants – October 25, 2018 at 3:00 p.m. EDT  
This webinar is designed to help new applicants become familiar with EPC. Click here to register.  

 

November Webinar: Updating Applicant Profiles - November 20, 2018 at 3:00 p.m. ET    
This webinar is designed to help applicants update their EPC profiles in preparation for the Funding Year (FY) 2019 application filing window. Click here to register.        

 

December Webinar: Preparing for FY2019 - December 12, 2018 at 3:00 p.m. ET    
This webinar is designed to help applicants and service providers prepare for the FY2019 application filing window. Click here to register.

10/25/2018Scheduled System Maintenance Friday, October 26


The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) and the National Verifier pre-production environments will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Friday, October 26 from 10 a.m. until 11 a.m. ET.

NLAD and the National Verifier production environments will be available for use during this time.

10/24/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) *TRAINING SITE* Outage Due to System Maintenance: October 25


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) *TRAINING SITE* will be unavailable on Thursday, October 25 from 3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. EDT for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use the training site. We apologize for any inconvenience.

10/19/2018News Brief Issued


The 10/19/2018 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.

10/18/2018Legacy System Outage Due to System Maintenance - October 19-20


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program legacy systems will be unavailable from 8:00 p.m. EDT on Friday, October 19 through 2:00 a.m. EDT on Saturday, October 20 for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to file invoices and use some of the search tools. The BEAR training site will also be unavailable. NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will not be affected by this outage. We apologize for any inconvenience.

10/18/2018My Portal Outage Due to System Maintenance Monday, October 22


Rural Health Care's My Portal will be unavailable from 7:00 - 9:00 a.m. Monday, October 22, 2018 due to system maintenance. Online forms will not be accessible for health care providers or service providers. We apologize for any inconvenience.


10/18/2018October 2018 Contributor Invoice Summary Now Available Online


The October 2018 invoice summary for contributors is now online and available for filers to view in E-File. 

Watch this quick video to learn how to access your online invoice summary

10/17/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: October 21-22


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) and the EPC training site will be unavailable from Sunday, October 21 at 7:00 p.m EDT through Monday, October 22 at 1:00 a.m. EDT for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. 

We apologize for any inconvenience.

10/17/2018Scheduled System Maintenance Friday, October 19


The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD), National Verifier, and Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Friday, October 19 at 10 p.m. ET until Saturday, October 20 at 11 a.m. ET.

NLAD, National Verifier, and LCS pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

Please note the longer maintenance window.

10/12/2018News Brief Issued


The 10/12/2018 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.

10/12/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) *TRAINING SITE* Outage Due to System Maintenance: October 15


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) *TRAINING SITE* will be unavailable on Monday, October 15 from 4:00 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. EDT for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use the training site. We apologize for any inconvenience.

10/11/20182018 E-rate Program Training Begins Next Week


USAC’s annual fall training starts on Monday, October 15, 2018 at USAC’s office located at 700 12th Street NW, Suite 900, Washington, DC 20005. For those of you joining us at USAC next week, here are a few tips and reminders to help you prepare for the training.

 

Registration: Please bring your registration confirmation with you along with a photo ID. We are at full capacity and will not be able to accommodate walk-in registrations. The name on the registration must match the name of the person who attends the training.

 

There is a three-step check-in process in the building lobby:

  1. Go to the security desk in the lobby to receive your security pass.
  2. After you receive your security pass, go to USAC’s registration desk in the lobby to check in and receive your name badge and training agenda.
  3. Find a USAC representative by the elevators to guide you to the training event.

NOTE: If you are attending both days of training, you will need to request a security pass and check in at the beginning of each day.

 

Download the Training Materials: Training materials are available on our website. We will be going paperless this year, and will not have printouts. Please plan accordingly.

 

Food: Attendees should make their own arrangements for meals. USAC will provide recommendations for nearby breakfast and lunch options within walking distance.

 

We look forward to seeing you next week. For information on other fall training events, please reference our 2018 Applicant & Service Provider Trainings page.

10/11/2018FCC and USAC Announce Second National Verifier Launch


Today, the FCC and USAC announced the soft launch of the National Verifier in five additional states and one territory beginning Monday, October 15:

  • Guam
  • Hawaii
  • Idaho
  • New Hampshire
  • North Dakota
  • South Dakota

At that time, service providers in the states and territory can begin using the National Verifier to determine subscriber eligibility. During the soft launch period, service providers can continue using their legacy eligibility checking procedures if they choose.

About the National Verifier

The National Verifier shifts the responsibility for determining a consumer's Lifeline eligibility from phone and internet service providers to the program's administrator, the Universal Service Administrative Company. The National Verifier will establish whether a consumer is eligible by electronically querying state and federal data sources, and if necessary, manually reviewing supporting documents. An overview of the National Verifier can be found on USAC's website.

Service providers who do business in any of the states or territory listed in this bulletin who did not receive an email about National Verifier training schedule for Launch 2 should email LifelineProgram@usac.org to be added to the National Verifier Launch 2 training list (this is different from the initial launch states training list).

10/10/2018October Webinar - Registration is Now Open


Join USAC for the monthly E-rate Program webinar. In October, we will discuss the E-rate Productivity Center (EPC).

 

E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) 101 for Applicants – October 25, 2018 at 3:00 p.m. EDTRegister Today

This webinar is designed to help new applicants become familiar with the E-rate Productivity Center (EPC). EPC is the account and application management portal for the E-rate Program. Program participants use this tool to manage program processes, receive notifications and to contact customer service. In this webinar, you will learn about basic navigation in EPC, including logging in for the first time.

10/8/2018Connect America Fund Map Now Available


USAC has published a new interactive online map that shows the impact of the Connect America Fund (CAF) program on broadband expansion across rural America. Now live, the Connect America Fund Broadband Map – or CAF Map – displays the locations where carriers that receive CAF support have built out mass-market, high-speed Internet service. The map can be accessed on the High Cost tools page.

10/5/2018News Brief Issued


The 10/5/2018 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.

10/4/2018Newsletter for October 2018


Revised FY2017 HCP Support Schedules (HSS) Distributed

HCPs and service providers in the Telecom Program were emailed revised FY2017 HCP Support Schedules, which now reflect the 100% support amount (no proration).

Access Your Revised FY2017 FCL in My Portal

The Revised FY2017 Funding Commitment Letters (FCLs) you received via email are now also available in My Portal. Download the How to Find Your FCL in My Portal Tip Sheet for more information on accessing your FCL

RHC Program Funding Cap Order

On June 25, 2018, the FCC issued an Order that adopted rules to: (1) increase the annual RHC Program funding cap to $571 million and apply it to FY2017; (2) annually adjust the RHC Program funding cap for inflation, beginning with FY2018; and (3) establish a process to carry-forward unused funds from past funding years for use in future funding years. The rules became effective upon publication of the Order in the Federal Register on June 29, 2018.

Watch the 2018 RHC Program Funding Cap Order Information Webinar and download the FAQ Sheet.

What this means for FY2017: Due to the increase in the RHC Program funding cap for FY2017, all previously approved FY2017 funding requests will receive 100% of their approved funding amount. The proration that was previously applied to FY2017 funding commitments has been removed, and revised Funding Commitment Letters (FCLs) have been issued via email. If you have not received your revised FY2017 FCL or have questions about it, please contact RHC-Assist@usac.org.

Please log in to My Portal and make sure you are up to date with your FY2017 invoices. If you have questions about the invoicing process, please look at our program invoicing pages for additional information: HCF Invoicing Page and Telecom Invoicing Page.

What this means for FY2018: As noted in the FCC’s 2018 RHC Program Funding Cap Order, the RHC Program funding cap for FY2018 will be $581 million, adjusted for inflation. As a reminder, the FY2018 filing window closed on Friday, June 29, 2018. Applicants are currently unable to submit funding requests for FY2018.

 

Important Reminders for FY2018

Upcoming Invoicing Training

The HCF Program invoicing deadline for FY2017 commitments ending on June 30, 2018 is December 31, 2018. The RHC Program Team will be hosting a webinar covering the invoicing process and best practices on November 15, 2018. Register today!

Watch RHC 101

On September 26, the RHC Program Team hosted RHC 101: An Introduction to the RHC Program webinar. This webinar covered the basics of the program including eligibility requirements and how to get started. Were you unable to make it? The recording and slides are posted on our website here.

Appeal Decisions

USAC is no longer sending appeal decisions via postal mail. If you have appealed a decision made by USAC, you will receive your appeal decision via email. Applicants seeking FCC review of a decision issued by USAC must follow the FCC’s regular appeal procedures.  

New Extended RHC Help Desk Hours!

As of August 1st, the RHC Help Desk hours were extended from 8:00 a.m. ET – 5:00 p.m. ET to 8:00 a.m. ET – 8:00 p.m. ET. We hope these longer operational hours will help meet the needs of our stakeholders on both coasts, and, in an effort to provide more one-on-one guidance, we are increasing the number of dedicated staff responding to phone calls and emails. Our goal with this expansion is to deliver thorough, helpful answers and guidance to you, faster.

What to Do if You Receive an Information Request

Applicants must upload all required documentation with the submission of their FCC Forms 462 or 466. FCC Forms submitted with incomplete or missing documentation will not be reviewed, and RHC reviewers will reach out to all account holders (the primary and all secondary and tertiary account holders associated with that HCP) with a request for additional information (“Information Request”). Information Requests are sent to collect any missing documentation, address deficiencies, or to ask clarifying questions about the FCC Form. If you receive an Information Request, you must respond to it within 14 calendar days. Once you respond, the RHC reviewers will work with you, to the extent they can, to ensure that they have all the necessary documentation to complete their review. Failure to respond within the 14 calendar day timeframe will result in an automatic denial, so be sure to meet that deadline! 

LOA/TPAs Must Be Up to Date

In order to be considered eligible for funding in FY2018, Letters of Agency (LOA) and Third Party Authorizations (TPA) must be up to date through a minimum of FY2018. Be especially mindful if you are an HCP using a consultant, a consortium leader, or a consultant filing on behalf of a consortium leader. Before submitting a form, please check to ensure your authorization documents are up to date.

FCC Forms 462 and 466 submitted with expired LOAs or TPAs will result in applicants receiving Information Requests.

For more information about submitting LOAs, please see the submission guide

10/2/20184Q2018 498/499 Spotlight Newsletter


The Fourth Quarter 498/499 Spotlight is now available here

10/2/2018November 2018 FCC Form 499-Q due November 1, 2018


The November 2018 FCC Form 499-Q (quarterly Telecommunications Reporting Worksheet) projects the 2019 1st quarter revenue of a contributor.  The form must be certified and submitted to USAC by Thursday, November 1, 2018.

Filers that do not have a direct universal service obligation (de minimis) are not required to file the FCC Form 499-Q however USAC recommends that de minimis filers notify USAC via email ("Form499@usac.org)" of its de minimis status each quarter. 

The data reported on this form is used to calculate the FCC universal service contribution factor and circularity factor, as well as to calculate the filer's monthly universal service contribution obligation. 

Watch this video to learn how to review reported revenue data prior to submitting to USAC to ensure accurate invoices are generated.

Filer can make changes to the November 2018 FCC Form 499-Q until December 17, 2018. 

After that date, no revisions to the November 2018 Form 499-Q will be accepted.

10/1/2018New Invoice Deadline Extension Tool Now Available in EPC


In last week's SL News Brief, we noted that we were working on a new invoice deadline extension tool in the E-rate Productivity Center (EPC).

The new EPC invoice extension deadline tool is now available. Applicants, consultants, and service providers will be able to request invoice deadline extensions for their Funding Request Numbers (FRNs) for Funding Year (FY) 2016 and forward by using the new tool.

As a reminder, program participants will use the existing legacy tool (the tool that applicants and service providers can access through the online BEAR Form) to request invoice deadline extensions for FRNs from FY2015 and previous funding years.

Visit the Invoice Deadline Extensions page for more information.

9/28/2018News Brief Issued


The 9/28/2018 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.

9/27/2018Lifeline Program Newsletter - September 2018


The September 2018 issue of Lifeline Program News is now available. Sign up to receive the newsletter by email in the Subscription Center.

September headlines:

  • Check NLAD Prior to Snapshot Date
  • Universal Forms Submission Guidance
  • National Verifier Update
  • Minimum Service Standards Increase
  • Did You Know? NLAD Changes
  • October Lifeline Program Webinar

9/25/2018Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance Thursday, September 27


The pre-production environments of the National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) and the Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Thursday, September 27 at 6 p.m. ET.

The outage is expected to last 6 hours.

The NLAD and LCS production environments will be available during this time.

9/25/2018My Portal Outage Due to System Maintenance Friday, September 28


Rural Health Care's My Portal will be unavailable from 7:00 - 9:00 a.m. Friday, September 28, 2018 due to system maintenance. Online forms will not be accessible for health care providers or service providers. We apologize for any inconvenience.

9/25/2018Invoice Deadline Extension Tool Update


In last week's SL News Brief, we noted that we were working on a new invoice deadline extension tool in the E-rate Productivity Center (EPC). The new EPC tool will be used to request invoice deadline extensions for Funding Request Numbers (FRNs) for funding years after Funding Year (FY) 2015. Over the weekend, we removed the legacy tool option for submitting extension requests for post-FY2015 FRNs.

The existing legacy tool (the tool accessed through the online BEAR Form) can be used to request invoice deadline extensions for FRNs from FY2015 and previous funding years. 

The new EPC tool will be available October 1.You can submit an invoice deadline extension request by opening a customer service case in EPC this week, but we suggest that you wait for the new EPC tool. (We will not be able to process those requests until the new EPC tool becomes available.)

 

9/24/2018September 2018 Contributor Invoice Summary Now Available Online


The September 2018 invoice summary for contributors is now online and available for filer to view in E-File.

Watch this quick video to learn how to access your online contributor invoice summary. 

9/21/2018News Brief Issued


The 9/21/2018 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.

9/19/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: September 23-24


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) and the EPC training site will be unavailable from Sunday, September 23 at 7:00 p.m EDT through Monday, September 24 at 1:00 a.m. EDT for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. 

We apologize for any inconvenience.

  

9/19/2018Upcoming Scheduled System Maintenance, Sept. 21, 27 & Oct. 19.


Scheduled System Maintenance Friday, September 21

The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) and the Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Friday, September 21 at 10 p.m. ET until Saturday, September 22 at 2 a.m. ET.

The NLAD and LCS pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

Scheduled System Maintenance Thursday, September 27

NLAD and LCS pre-production environments will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Thursday, September 27 at 6 p.m. ET. 

The outage is expected to last 6 hours.

Scheduled System Maintenance Friday, October 19

NLAD and LCS will be unavailable due to scheduled maintenance starting Friday, October 19 at 10 p.m. ET until Saturday, October 20 at 8 a.m. ET

Please note the longer maintenance window in October. The length of the outage may change. If so, USAC will send an updated bulletin.

The NLAD and LCS pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

9/17/2018Customer Service Operations Back to Normal


Thank you for your patience during Hurricane Florence. All of our customer service operations are back to normal. 

9/14/2018News Brief Issued


The 9/14/2018 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.

9/14/2018*UPDATE* Hurricane Florence Impact on Customer Service


Now that Hurricane Florence has made landfall, our call centers are feeling the effects of the weather event. If you try contacting the E-rate Client Service Bureau, the Rural Health Care Support Center, or the High Cost Support Center today, or the Lifeline Support Center over the next couple of days, you might experience longer than normal wait times. We are working as quickly as possible to answer your calls. We appreciate your patience.

***

USAC’s customer service operations are located in the projected path of Hurricane Florence. In the coming days, we anticipate service disruptions to USAC’s phone and email support including the E-rate Client Service Bureau, the Rural Health Care Support Center and the High Cost Support Center. USAC is monitoring the storm and working to meet your customer service needs while ensuring the safety of our team. 

As the storm moves inland, we are experiencing longer than normal wait times that may continue in the coming days. We appreciate your patience.

9/14/2018*UPDATE* Hurricane Florence Impact on Customer Service


Now that Hurricane Florence has made landfall, our call centers are feeling the effects of the weather event. If you try contacting the Lifeline Support Center over the next couple of days, you might experience longer than normal wait times. We are working as quickly as possible to answer your calls. We appreciate your patience.

***

USAC’s customer service operations are located in the projected path of Hurricane Florence. In the coming days, we anticipate service disruptions to USAC’s phone and email support including the E-rate Client Service Bureau, the Rural Health Care Support Center and the High Cost Support Center.

USAC is monitoring the storm and working to meet your customer service needs while ensuring the safety of our team. As the storm moves inland, we are experiencing longer than normal wait times that may continue in the coming days. We appreciate your patience.

9/14/2018*UPDATE* Hurricane Florence Impact on Customer Service


Now that Hurricane Florence has made landfall, our call centers are feeling the effects of the weather event. If you try contacting the E-rate Client Service Bureau, the Rural Health Care Support Center, or the High Cost Support Center today, you might experience longer than normal wait times. We are working as quickly as possible to answer your calls. We appreciate your patience.


***

USAC’s customer service operations are located in the projected path of Hurricane Florence. In the coming days, we anticipate service disruptions to USAC’s phone and email support including the E-rate Client Service Bureau, the Rural Health Care Support Center and the High Cost Support Center. USAC is monitoring the storm and working to meet your customer service needs while ensuring the safety of our team.

As the storm moves inland, we are experiencing longer than normal wait times that may continue in the coming days. We appreciate your patience.

9/14/2018FCC Form 481 Non-confidential Data Now Available


USAC has published non-confidential FCC Form 481 data filed in July by carriers participating in the High Cost program. This data can be found on the tools page of the High Cost website.

 

Beginning with the 2018 filing year, USAC is providing public access to most FCC Form 481 data filed annually by carriers that receive High Cost support. Eligible telecommunications carriers (ETCs) that participate in the High Cost program must file FCC Form 481 with USAC by July 1 every year. This form collects financial and operations information used to validate carrier support.  

The public data file contains a separate tab for each section of Form 481 being published, with individual lines in each section displayed by column. Cells that are blacked out in the data file indicate the exclusion of certain information subject to protective order or not routinely available for inspection, consistent with 47 C.F.R. § 0.457(d), as well as data subject to a carrier request for confidential treatment. We may make this information public, in accordance with any FCC review of confidentiality requests, in a subsequent publication of the data.

 

In addition, narrative attachments to the Form 481 filings, and detailed information filed by Alaska Plan participants about newly available back-haul capacity, are currently excluded from public release.

  

9/13/2018FCC Announces 4th Quarter 2018 Contribution Factor Increase to 20.1 Percent


The FCC released a Public Notice (DA 18-944  ) announcing that the proposed universal service contribution factor for the fourth quarter (October - December) of 2018 will be .201 or 20.1 percent.

9/13/2018FCC Announces 4th Quarter 2018 Contribution Factor Increase to 20.1 Percent


The FCC released a Public Notice (DA 18-944 ) announcing that the proposed universal service contribution factor for the fourth quarter (October - December) of 2018 will be .201 or 20.1 percent. 

9/12/2018New HUBB Features Now Available


USAC has updated the High Cost Universal Broadband (HUBB) portal to allow certain revisions to broadband deployment data already certified in the system. Carriers can now edit the following information in the HUBB:        

  • Address, city and state  
  • Speed tier  
  • Multi-dwelling units (MDU)

In addition, carriers that have certified “no locations to upload” may now undo that certification and file new locations with the system while the filing window is open.    Other HUBB changes include an updated Manage Uploads page and an updated Milestone Certification page, as well as a new Notifications page to serve as a central location for HUBB announcements.  

These system updates are intended to help carriers more easily navigate the HUBB to file broadband deployment data with USAC and more easily track the status of their filings. The changes reflect the input of carriers that use the system, including feedback gathered during ongoing user testing.

 

9/12/2018Hurricane Florence Potential Impact on Customer Service Operations


USAC’s customer service operations are located in the projected path of Hurricane Florence. In the coming days, we anticipate service disruptions to USAC’s phone and email support including the E-rate Client Service Bureau, the Rural Health Care Support Center, the High Cost Support Center, and the Lifeline Support Center. USAC is monitoring the storm and working to meet your customer service needs while ensuring the safety of our team.   

Please see USAC's program pages for updates about the Hurricane's impact to each programs' customer service.  

9/11/2018NLAD 4.8.0 Production Release


NLAD version 4.8.0 was released into the Production environment yesterday, Monday, September 10, 2018

With this release, carriers can use the new A13 code to resolve address failures. In addition, carriers can only request two years of data for the Detail Transaction and Detail Resolution Status reports.

One New UI and API Error Message

A new error message was added. Carriers will encounter this error when requesting more than two years of data for the Detail Transaction or Detail Resolution Status reports.

      INVALID_DATE_RANGE: Date range cannot be more than 2 years from current date.

One New "A Code" Available to Resolve Address Errors

The new code A13 may be used to resolve INVALID_ADDRESS or AMS_FAILURE_ANALYSIS errors. The A13 code indicates that a carrier has reviewed documentation containing the latitude and longitudinal coordinates of a subscriber's address.

Revision to Reverification Subscriber Status Report

In addition, the TPIV Deceased Failure and TPIV Deceased Failure Resolution columns were removed from the Reverification Subscriber Status report. These columns will not be used in the reverification reports for the initial launch states. Service providers should not act on the information previously included in this column.

9/7/20182018 E-rate Training - Register Today!


The Schools and Libraries Program will hold training sessions for E-rate Program participants this fall. During the training you'll have the opportunity to ask questions and hear directly from members of the USAC Schools and Libraries team on key topics important to successful participation in the program. 

 

REGISTER HERE 

 

USAC will be conducting in-person E-rate training sessions at the following locations:

 

Applicant Trainings

  • October 15/16 – Washington, DC
  • October 18/19 – Washington, DC
  • October 22/23 – Palatine, IL (Chicago area)
  • November 1/2 – Sacramento, CA
  • November 13/14 – Omaha, NE
  • November 28/29 – Atlanta,GA

 

Service Provider Trainings

  • December 3 – Washington, DC
  • December 4/5 – Washington, DC
  

9/7/2018News Brief Issued


The 9/7/2018 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.

9/6/2018Newsletter for September 2018


FY2017 Consortia Annual Reports Due September 30, 2018

Per Healthcare Connect Fund (HCF) Program rules, all consortia receiving Rural Health Care (RHC) Program funding are required to submit an annual report to USAC using an Excel template (available for download on the USAC website) to supplement information collected in RHC Program application forms. The reports for FY2017 (July 1, 2017 - June 30, 2018) are due September 30, 2018.

Who Needs to Submit the Annual Report? HCF Program consortia must submit an annual report for each funding year in which the consortium received HCF support and for the life of a supported facility for which the consortium received large upfront payments. RHC Pilot Program consortia must submit an annual report for each year in which the consortium receives Pilot support.

For instructions on how to complete and submit the FY2017 Annual Report, please visit our website.

RHC Program Funding Cap Order

On June 25, 2018, the FCC issued an Order that adopted rules to: (1) increase the annual RHC Program funding cap to $571 million and apply it to FY2017; (2) annually adjust the RHC Program funding cap for inflation, beginning with FY2018; and (3) establish a process to carry-forward unused funds from past funding years for use in future funding years. The rules became effective upon publication of the Order in the Federal Register on June 29, 2018.

Watch the 2018 RHC Program Funding Cap Order Information Webinar and download the FAQ Sheet.

What this means for FY2017: Due to the increase in the RHC Program funding cap for FY2017, all previously approved FY2017 funding requests will receive 100% of their approved funding amount. The proration that was previously applied to FY2017 funding commitments has been removed, and revised Funding Commitment Letters (FCLs) have been issued via email. If you have not received your revised FY2017 FCL or have questions about it, please contact RHC-Assist@usac.org.

Please log in to My Portal and make sure you are up to date with your FY2017 invoices. If you have questions about the invoicing process, please look at our program invoicing pages for additional information: HCF Invoicing Page and Telecom Invoicing Page.

What this means for FY2018: As noted in the FCC’s 2018 RHC Program Funding Cap Order, the RHC Program funding cap for FY2018 will be $581 million, adjusted for inflation. As a reminder, the FY2018 filing window closed on Friday, June 29, 2018. Applicants are currently unable to submit funding requests for FY2018.

Access Your Revised FCL in My Portal: The Revised FY2017 FCLs you received via email are now also available in My Portal. Download the How to Find Your FCL in My Portal Tip Sheet for more information on accessing your FCL.

 

Important Reminders for FY2018

Register for RHC 101 - An Introduction to the RHC Program

Are you or a colleague interested in learning more about the RHC Program? On September 26, 2018, we will be hosting an RHC Program 101: An Introduction to the RHC Program webinar for beginners. This webinar covers the basics of the program including eligibility requirements and how to get started. Register today!

Appeal Decisions

USAC is no longer sending appeal decisions via postal mail. If you have appealed a decision made by USAC, you will receive your appeal decision via email. Applicants seeking Commission review of a decision issued by USAC must follow the Commission’s regular appeal procedures.  

New Extended RHC Help Desk Hours!

As of August 1st, the RHC Help Desk hours were extended from 8:00 a.m. ET – 5:00 p.m. ET to 8:00 a.m. ET – 8:00 p.m. ET. We hope these longer operational hours will help meet the needs of our stakeholders on both coasts, and, in an effort to provide more one-on-one guidance, we are increasing the number of dedicated staff responding to phone calls and emails. Our goal with this expansion is to deliver thorough, helpful answers and guidance to you, faster.

What to Do if You Receive an Information Request

As you submit your FCC Form 462 or 466, please upload all required documentation with your forms. FCC Forms submitted with incomplete or missing documentation will not be reviewed, and RHC reviewers will reach out to all account holders (the primary and all secondary and tertiary account holders associated with that HCP) with a request for additional information (“Information Request”). Information Requests are sent to collect any missing documentation, address deficiencies, or to ask clarifying questions about the FCC Form. If you receive an Information Request, you must respond to it within 14 calendar days. Once you respond, the RHC reviewers will work with you, to the extent they can, to ensure that they have all the necessary documentation to complete their review. Failure to respond within the 14 calendar day timeframe will result in an automatic denial, so be sure to meet that deadline! 

LOA/TPAs Must Be Up to Date

In order to be considered eligible for funding in FY2018, Letters of Agency (LOA) and Third Party Authorizations (TPA) must be up to date through a minimum of FY2018. Be especially mindful if you are an HCP using a consultant, a consortium leader, or a consultant filing on behalf of a consortium leader. Before submitting a form, please check to ensure your authorization documents are up to date.

FCC Forms 462 and 466 submitted with expired LOAs or TPAs will result in applicants receiving Information Requests.

8/31/2018News Brief Issued


The 8/31/2018 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.

8/31/2018FY2017 Annual Report for HCF & Pilot Program Consortia Due September 30


Per Healthcare Connect Fund (HCF) Program rules, all consortia receiving Rural Health Care (RHC) Program funding are required to submit an annual report to USAC using an Excel template (available for download on the USAC website) to supplement information collected in RHC Program application forms. The reports for funding year (FY) 2017 (July 1, 2017 - June 30, 2018) are due September 30, 2018.

Who Needs to Submit the Annual report?
HCF Program consortia must submit an annual report for each funding year in which the consortium received HCF support and for the life of a supported facility for which the consortium received large upfront payments.

Pilot Program consortia must submit an annual report for each year in which the consortium receives Pilot support.

How to Submit the Annual Report
HCF consortia annual report instructions:

  1. Open the annual report template hyperlinked under “Excel template” on the HCF consortia annual report page.
  2. Review the telehealth applications in column A of the “Telehealth Services” tab. Select “Yes” using the dropdown in column B for each telehealth application for which the consortium received funding in FY2017.
  3. Save the template with the consortium name and HCP number in the file name to your computer.
  4. Email the completed template to RHC-assist@usac.org by September 30, 2018.

Pilot Program consortia annual report instructions:

  1. Open the annual report template hyperlinked under “Excel template” on the Pilot Program consortia annual report page.
  2. Review the telehealth applications in column A of the “Telehealth Services” tab. Select “Yes” using the dropdown in column B for each telehealth application for which the consortium received funding in FY2017.
  3. If the Pilot Program consortium bid for services in FY2016, the consortium must complete both the “Telehealth Services” tab and “Competitive Bidding Information” tab. To complete the “Competitive weight, and the evaluation criteria using the dropdown in column F.
  4. Save the template with the consortium name and HCP number in the file name to your computer.
  5. Email the completed template to RHC-assist@usac.org by September 30, 2018.

Failure to submit the required annual report(s) by the deadline may result in the denial of program funding.

8/30/2018Estimated de minimis Threshold for Calendar Year 2018 Published


For calendar year 2018, filers that report less than $62,655.75 of combined interstate and international revenues on Line 423, columns (d) and (e) of the 2018 FCC Form 499-A will likely be considered de minimis for calendar year 2018.

This threshold is an estimate based on the FCC's estimated factor for calendar year 2018.

Read more about how filer's qualify for de minimis status here.

8/30/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) *TRAINING SITE* Outage Due to System Maintenance: August 30


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) *TRAINING SITE* will be unavailable from Thursday, August 30 at 7:00 p.m. EDT through midnight for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use the training site. We apologize for any inconvenience.

8/29/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) *TRAINING SITE* Outage Due to System Maintenance: August 29


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) *TRAINING SITE* will be unavailable from Wednesday, August 29 at 7:00 p.m. EDT through midnight for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use the training site. We apologize for any inconvenience.

8/29/2018Lifeline Program Newsletter - August 2018


The August 2018 issue of Lifeline Program News is now available. Sign up to receive the newsletter by email in the Subscription Center

August Headlines:

  • USAC-Elected Recertification Elections Close August 31
  • Minimum Service Standards Increase December 1
  • National Verifier: August Announcements
  • Did You Know? New Address Resolution Code Added in NLAD
  • Did You Know? Upcoming Changes to NLAD Reports
  • Webinar on September 12: Lifeline 101

8/27/2018My Portal Outage Due to System Maintenance Wednesday, August 29


Rural Health Care's My Portal will be unavailable from 7:00 - 9:00 a.m. Wednesday, August 29, 2018 due to system maintenance. Online forms will not be accessible for health care providers or service providers. We apologize for any inconvenience.

8/27/2018USAC Elected Recertification Election Form Available Until August 31


Service providers have until August 31, 2018 to elect USAC to conduct the rolling recertification process on their behalf. There is no fee to elect USAC. 

The election period for 2019 USAC-elected recertification is open until August 31, 2018. 

To elect USAC, you will need to complete the online election form. You can submit one election form for all your company's SACs. The election form is also available on the USAC-elected recertification page. 

For 2019 USAC-elected recertification, elections will not automatically renew. If your company has currently elected USAC, you will need to submit an election for 2019. 

Service providers in National Verifier first-wave states do not need to submit an election for 2019 USAC-elected recertification. The National Verifier will conduct annual recertification for initial wave states. 

For additional information, please visit the USAC-elected recertification page of our website.  

8/27/2018NLAD 4.6.0 Pre-Production Release


NLAD version 4.6.0 was released into the Pre-Production environment today, August 27, 2018.

With this release, carriers will be able to test the new "A Code" in the pre-production environment.

Once the code has been released into the production environment, service providers will be able
to select code A13 to resolve AMS errors if they reviewed documentation containing latitudinal and longitudinal coordinates.

8/24/2018News Brief Issued


The 8/24/2018 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.

8/23/2018Systems Down For Maintenance Starting Friday, August 24 at 9PM ET


All High Cost systems will be unavailable from Friday, August 24 at 9PM ET to Saturday, August 25 at 9AM for monthly system maintenance. This includes HUBB, MF II Challenge Process Portal and the state access tools for HUBB and 481 data.  During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use the HUBB. We apologize for any inconvenience.

  

8/22/2018September Webinar - Registration is Now Open


Join USAC for the monthly E-rate Program webinar. In September, we will discuss the invoicing process.

 

Navigating the E-rate Invoicing Process – September 19, 2018 at 3:00 p.m. EDTRegister Today

This webinar is designed to help E-rate Program applicants and service providers understand the invoicing process. In this webinar, you will learn more about filing FCC Forms 472 (BEAR), FCC Forms 474 (SPI), electronic invoicing for service providers, invoice deadlines and more.

8/22/2018Legacy System Outage Due to System Maintenance - August 24-25


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program legacy systems will be unavailable from 9:00 p.m. EDT on Friday, August 24 through 10:00 a.m. EDT on Saturday, August 25 for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to file invoices and use some of the search tools. The BEAR training site will also be unavailable. NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) may be affected by this outage. EPC users may experience related system slowness or intermittent outages during this maintenance window. We apologize for any inconvenience.

8/22/2018E-File Outage Due to System Maintenance: August 24-25


USAC's E-File system will be unavailable for all users from 9:00 p.m. EDT on Friday, August 24 through 10:00 a.m. EDT on Saturday, August 25 for system maintenance. During this time the E-file login page will be unavailable and users will be unable to file, certify, and search for FCC Forms 498 or 499. All online FCC forms for contributors, service providers, and eligible telecommunications carriers will not be accessible. NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) may be affected by this outage. EPC users may experience related system slowness or intermittent outages during this maintenance window. We apologize for any inconvenience.

8/22/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: August 26-27


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) and the EPC training site will be unavailable from Sunday, August 26 at 7:00 p.m EDT through Monday, August 27 at 1:00 a.m. EDT for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. 

We apologize for any inconvenience.

8/21/2018Legacy System Outage Due to System Maintenance - August 21


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program legacy systems will be unavailable from 6:00-8:00 p.m. EDT on Tuesday, August 21 for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to file invoices and use some of the search tools. The BEAR training site will also be unavailable. We apologize for any inconvenience.

 

NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will not be affected by this maintenance.

 

8/17/2018RESOLVED - National Verifier, NLAD, and LCS Connectivity and Login Issues


* UPDATE: All issues have been resolved*

Some National Verifier, National Lifeline Accountability (NLAD), and Lifeline Claims System (LCS) users are experiencing connectivity and login issues that prevent them from using these systems.

USAC is actively working to resolve the issue and will share more information about the resolution as it is available.

We apologize for the inconvenience.      

8/17/2018News Brief Issued


The 8/17/2018 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.

8/15/2018My Portal System Update Regarding Draft Forms


RHC will be updating My Portal with FY2017 Funding Cap information during August. Once the system updates are complete, applicants will see updated commitment information for FY2017 funding request numbers (FRNs), as well as the non-prorated amounts when submitting the FCC Form 463 (HCF Program Invoice and Disbursement Form) and both the FCC Form 467 (Telecom Program Connection and Certification Form) and Telecom Program Invoice. 

This update will temporarily impact the submission of FY2017 FCC Form 463, FCC Form 467, and the Telecom Program Invoice. FCC Forms 463, 467, and Telecom Program Invoices will not be accepted between August 22nd and September 4th. Please make sure to submit these forms prior to August 22nd, or after September 4th. 

Applicants should also refrain from creating any FY2017 FCC Forms 463, FCC Forms 467, and Telecom Program Invoice drafts during this time, as they will no longer be valid after system updates are made.

FY2017 applicants can begin submitting FCC Form 463, FCC Form 467, and Telecom Program Invoice again on September 5th.

More Information about Invoicing

8/10/2018News Brief Issued


The 8/10/2018 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.

8/7/2018Newsletter for August 2018


RHC Program Funding Cap Order

On June 25, 2018, the FCC issued an Order that adopted rules to: (1) increase the annual RHC Program funding cap to $571 million and apply it to FY2017; (2) annually adjust the RHC Program funding cap for inflation, beginning with FY2018; and (3) establish a process to carry-forward unused funds from past funding years for use in future funding years. The rules became effective upon publication of the Order in the Federal Register on June 29, 2018.

Watch the 2018 RHC Program Funding Cap Order Information Webinar and download the FAQ Sheet.

What this means for FY2017: Due to the increase in the RHC Program funding cap for FY2017, all previously approved FY2017 funding requests will receive 100% of their approved funding amount. The proration that was previously applied to FY2017 funding commitments has been removed, and revised Funding Commitment Letters (FCLs) have been issued via email.

If you have not received your revised FY2017 FCL or have questions about it, please contact RHC-Assist@usac.org.

Impact on Invoicing for FY2017: Applicants and service providers have received their revised FCLs via email over the past few weeks and all applicants may now continue invoicing. While the commitment amount in My Portal will continue to reflect the proration at this time, you may continue the invoicing process as normal. USAC will adjust the disbursement amount of approved invoices to ensure that service providers receive the full, non-prorated commitment amount. If you have fully or partially invoiced, no further action is needed on previously submitted invoices. Please look to our program invoicing pages for information on the invoicing process: HCF Invoicing Page and Telecom Invoicing Page.

Service Provider FY2017 Remittance Statements: As stated above, if you have fully or partially invoiced, no further action is required on previously submitted invoices. The service provider will automatically receive the difference in the upcoming payment disbursement and the payment will be reflected on the remittance statement as “True Up” with the associated invoice number. Download the Remittance Statement Tip Sheet for more information.

What this means for FY2018: As noted in the FCC’s 2018 RHC Program Funding Cap Order, the RHC Program funding cap for FY2018 will be $581 million, adjusted for inflation. As a reminder, the FY2018 filing window closed on Friday, June 29, 2018. Applicants are unable to submit funding requests at this time.

My Portal Updates: FY2017 Site and Service Substitutions, FCC Forms 463 and 467, and Telecom Program Invoice

RHC will be updating My Portal with FY2017 Funding Cap information during August. Once the system updates are complete, applicants will see updated commitment information, as well as the non-prorated amounts when submitting the FCC Form 463 (HCF Program Invoice and Disbursement Form) and both the FCC Form 467 (Telecom Program Connection and Certification Form) and Telecom Program Invoice. This system update will allow applicants to access updated commitment information for FY2017 funding request numbers (FRNs).

FY2017 Site and Service Substitutions: Due to the My Portal system updates, FY2017 site and service substitutions will not be accepted between August 1st and September 4th. Additionally, site and service substitutions for FY2017 in draft status will no longer be valid after system updates are made. Applicants therefore should refrain from creating any FY2017 draft site and service substitutions between August 1st and September 4th, as they will not be valid due to system updates. These changes will not impact site and service substitutions for prior funding years. Applicants may continue to submit prior year site and service substitutions as usual during this time.

FY2017 applicants can begin submitting site and service substitutions again on September 5th.

FY2017 FCC Form 463, FCC Form 467, and the Telecom Program Invoice: The My Portal updates in August will also impact the submission of FY2017 FCC Form 463, FCC Form 467, and the Telecom Program Invoice. Please keep in mind that FCC Forms 463, 467, and Telecom Program Invoices will not be accepted between August 22nd and September 4th. Please make sure to submit these forms prior to August 22nd, or after September 4th. Applicants should also refrain from creating any FY2017 FCC Forms 463, FCC Forms 467, and Telecom Program Invoice drafts during this time, as they will no longer be valid after system updates are made.

FY2017 applicants can begin submitting FCC Form 463, FCC Form 467, and Telecom Program Invoice again on September 5th.

 

Important Reminders for FY2018

New Extended RHC Help Desk Hours!

Starting August 1st, the RHC Help Desk hours will be extended from 8:00 a.m. ET – 5:00 p.m. ET to 8:00 a.m. ET – 8:00 p.m. ET. We hope these longer operational hours will help meet the needs of our stakeholders on both coasts, and, in an effort to provide more one-on-one guidance, we are increasing the number of dedicated staff responding to phone calls and emails. Our goal with this expansion is to deliver thorough, helpful answers and guidance to you, faster.

What to Do if You Receive an Information Request

As you submit your FCC Form 462 or 466, please upload all required documentation with your forms. FCC Forms submitted with incomplete or missing documentation will not be reviewed, and RHC reviewers will reach out to all account holders (the primary and all secondary and tertiary account holders associated with that HCP) with a request for additional information (“Information Request”). Information Requests are sent to collect any missing documentation, address deficiencies, or to ask clarifying questions about the FCC Form. If you receive an Information Request, you must respond to it within 14 calendar days. Once you respond, the RHC reviewers will work with you, to the extent they can, to ensure that they have all the necessary documentation to complete their review. Failure to respond within the 14 calendar day timeframe will result in an automatic denial, so be sure to meet that deadline! 

LOA/TPAs Must Be Up to Date

In order to be considered eligible for funding in FY2018, Letters of Agency (LOA) and Third Party Authorizations (TPA) must be up to date through a minimum of FY2018. Be especially mindful if you are an HCP using a consultant, a consortium leader, or a consultant filing on behalf of a consortium leader. Before submitting a form, please check to ensure your authorization documents are up to date.

FCC Forms 462 and 466 submitted with expired LOAs or TPAs will result in applicants receiving Information Requests.

For more information about submitting LOAs, please see the submission guide

8/3/2018News Brief Issued


The 8/3/2018 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.

8/2/2018Budget Control Mechanism for the Fourth Quarter of 2018 Now Available


In order to remain within the $2 billion budget for the 2018-2019 tariff year, USAC applied the FCC Budget Control Mechanism methodology to reduce support for each carrier. USAC now makes available these support calculations for October 2018 through December 2018. The support calculations can be found here.

7/31/2018FCC Issues Public Notice on Draft ESL for FY2019


On July 30, 2018, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released a Public Notice (DA 18-789) establishing the comment period for the Funding Year (FY) 2019 Eligible Services List (ESL). Comments on the draft ESL, which is attached to the Public Notice, are due to the FCC on or before August 29, 2018. Reply comments are due to the FCC on or before September 13, 2018. For information on filing comments with the FCC, please refer to the Public Notice.

7/31/2018E-File Outage Due to System Maintenance: August 2


USAC's E-Filesystem will be unavailable for all users on Thursday, August 2, 2018, from 8:00-10:00 p.m. EDT, for system maintenance. During this time the E-file login page will be unavailable and users will be unable to file, certify, and search for FCC Forms 498 or 499. All online FCC forms for contributors, service providers, and eligible telecommunications carriers will not be accessible. The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will not be affected by this outage. We apologize for any inconvenience.

7/31/2018Lifeline Program Newsletter - July 2018


The July 2018 issue of Lifeline Program News is now available. Sign up to receive the newsletter by email in the Subscription Center.

July Headlines:

USAC-Elected Recertification Elections Open
Minimum Service Standards Increase December 1
Universal Forms Requirement in Effect
National Verifier Update
Using Coordinates to Correct AMS Errors
Webinar on August 8: Tribal Mapping Tool Demo

7/30/2018August Webinar - Registration is Now Open


Join USAC for the monthly E-rate Program webinar. In August, we will discuss the competitive bidding process.

 

Understanding Competitive BiddingAugust 22, 2018 at 3:00 p.m. EDTRegister Today

In this webinar, we will provide information for applicants and service providers about each step in the competitive bidding process including filing and searching for Funding Year 2019 FCC Forms 470, request for proposal (RFP) documents, responding to bids, and more.

7/27/2018News Brief Issued


The 7/27/2018 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.

7/26/2018Legacy System Outage Due to System Maintenance - July 27-28


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program legacy systems will be unavailable from 9:00 p.m. EDT on Friday, July 27 through 10:00 a.m. EDT on Saturday, July 28 for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to file invoices and use some of the search tools. The BEAR training site will also be unavailable. We apologize for any inconvenience.

 

NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will not be affected by this maintenance.

7/25/2018My Portal System Updates Regarding FY2017 Site and Service Substitutions


The RHC Program will be updating My Portal with FY2017 Funding Cap information during August 2018. Once the system updates are complete, applicants will see updated commitment information, as well as the non-prorated amounts when submitting the FCC Form 463 (Invoice and Disbursement Form) and both the FCC Form 467 (Connection and Certification Form) and Telecom Invoice. This system update will allow applicants to access updated and accurate commitment information for FY2017 funding request numbers (FRNs).

The necessary My Portal system updates will mean that FY2017 site and service substitutions will not be accepted during August. Additionally, site and service substitutions that are in draft status will no longer be valid after system updates are made. We ask that FY2017 applicants submit all site and service substitutions by Tuesday, July 31st, and refrain from submitting any in the month of August. Please also refrain from creating any draft site and service substitutions in August, as they will not be valid due to system updates. These changes will not impact site and service substitutions for prior years, which will continue to be accepted during August; applicants may continue to submit prior year site and service substitutions as usual during this time.

FY2017 applicants can begin submitting site and service substitutions again in September.

7/25/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: July 29-30


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) and the EPC training site will be unavailable from Sunday, July 29 at 7:00 p.m EDT through Monday, July 30 at 1:00 a.m. EDT for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. We apologize for any inconvenience.

7/25/2018My Portal Outage Due To System Maintenance Thursday, August 2


Rural Health Care's My Portal will be unavailable from 8:00 - 10:00 p.m. Thursday, August 2, 2018 due to system maintenance. Online forms will not be accessible for health care providers or service providers. We apologize for any inconvenience.

7/25/2018Production Release of LCS v2.4.0


Enhancements to the "Filing History" page in the Lifeline Claims Systems (LCS) were released into the National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) production environment on Monday, July 23, 2018.

In this release, new "search" and "PDF" services were added that enable users to review the history of certified (original and revised) Lifeline claims and to download a printable PDF. 

The list of available claims a user can retrieve, view, and download is dependent on the data month of the claim.

The "Filing History" archive in LCS includes:

      - All 2018 and future original and revised certified claims submitted through LCS 

      - The most recent original or revised certified FCC Forms 497 submitted through E-File (FY 2017 and prior) 

Note: Original and revised paper FCC Forms 497 submitted by email, fax, ore mail are not retrievable in LCS.

Please refer to the LCS User Guide, which is also available in the Lifeline Claims System, and the LCS Upload Validation Rules for details on how to complete the input template.

How to Log In to the Lifeline Claims System

LCS users will log in through the NLAD production environment to access the Lifeline Claims System. The LCS landing page will differ depending on a user's E-File entitlements.

  

7/24/2018UPDATE - National Verifier Service Provider Portal Intermittent Sign-In Issues


USAC has deployed a fix that should correct the National Verifier service provider portal login issue for most users.

If you previously experienced difficulty logging in, try again. If you are still unable to log in, please reach out to LifelineProgram@usac.org so we can troubleshoot your concern.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

7/24/2018National Verifier Service Provider Portal Intermittent Sign-In Issues


Some National Verifier users are experiencing trouble logging into the service provider portal. USAC is aware of the issue and working to determine the cause of these service disruptions.  We will provide an update by 2 p.m. ET.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

7/20/2018News Brief Issued


The 7/20/2018 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.

7/20/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: July 22-23


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will be unavailable from Sunday, July 22 at 7:00 p.m EDT through Monday, July 23 at 1:00 a.m. EDT for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. We apologize for any inconvenience.

7/19/2018Assistance with Filing the FCC Form 470


We have posted a video series on how to file FCC Form 470 for Funding Year 2019, using a single FCC Form 470 as an example from the beginning to the end of the filing process. This video series is located in the Online Learning Library and includes the following:

For step-by-step information on filing – including screenshots of each step in the process – we have also posted an FCC Form 470 User Guide. For a list with descriptions of the service type options in Category One, you can refer to the Category One Services Drop-Down Menu Reference Table

7/18/2018Watch the 2018 Funding Cap Order Informational Webinar Today!


The recording of the July 10 webinar is available here

7/16/2018Service Providers in National Verifier States Not Required to Perform 2018 Recertification


In December 2017, the FCC waived the recertification requirement for service providers in the National Verifier first-wave states starting with January 2018 anniversary dates through the launch of the National Verifier.

Reverification will take the place of annual recertification for 2018 in Colorado, Mississippi, Montana, New Mexico, Utah, or Wyoming. Reverification is the one-time process conducted by USAC that occurs as a state enters the National Verifier.

The election period for 2019 USAC-elected recertification opened today and will remain open through August 31, 2018.        

Service providers located in National Verifier first-wave states do not need to submit an election for 2019 USAC-elected recertification; however, if you do business in both National Verifier and non-National Verifier states, and you wish to elect USAC for 2019 recertification, you only need to elect USAC for your SACs in non-National Verifier states.

For questions about USAC-elected recertification, please contact us at LIverifications@usac.org.  

7/13/2018News Brief Issued


The 7/13/2018 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.

7/13/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: July 14-15


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) and the EPC training site will be unavailable from Saturday, July 14 at 11:00 p.m EDT through Sunday, July 15 at 4:00 a.m. EDT for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. We apologize for any inconvenience.

7/12/2018National Verifier Service Provider Portal Issue Resolved


  

7/12/2018Legacy System Outage Due to System Maintenance - July 12


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program legacy systems will be unavailable from 6:00-8:00 p.m. EDT on Thursday, July 12 for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to file invoices and use some of the search tools. The BEAR training site will also be unavailable. We apologize for any inconvenience.

 

NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will not be affected by this maintenance.

7/10/2018My Portal Outage Due To System Maintenance Thursday, July 12


Rural Health Care's My Portal will be unavailable from 7:00 - 9:00 a.m. Thursday, July 12, 2018 due to system maintenance. Online forms will not be accessible for health care providers or service providers. We apologize for any inconvenience.

7/9/2018Newsletter for July 2018


FCC 2018 RHC Program Funding Cap Order

June 25, 2018 - The FCC has issued an Order that adopts rules to: (1) increase the annual RHC Program funding cap to $571 million and apply it to FY2017; (2) annually adjust the RHC Program funding cap for inflation, beginning with FY2018; and (3) establish a process to carry-forward unused funds from past funding years for use in future funding years. The rules became effective immediately upon publication of the Order in the Federal Register on June 29, 2018.

Read and download the FCC’s RHC 2018 Funding Cap Order and FAQ sheet.

Informational Webinar on the FCC 2018 RHC Program Funding Cap Order

Join us on Tuesday, July 10, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. ET.

Register Here!

Can’t make it? Webinar recording and an FAQ fact sheet will be posted on our website.

Please note that the webinar will focus exclusively on USAC's implementation of the Order and no FCC representatives will be participating.

Additional information about what the RHC 2018 Funding Cap Order means for program participants is forthcoming. General guidance for FY2017 and FY2018 funding requests (FCC Form 462 for the HCF Program and FCC Form 466 in the Telecom Program) is below. 

What this means for FY2017Due to the increase in the RHC Program funding cap for FY2017, all previously approved FY2017 funding requests will receive 100% of their approved funding amount. The proration that was previously applied to FY2017 funding commitments will be removed, and revised Funding Commitment Letters (FCLs) will be issued. Please discontinue invoicing against the previously issued FY2017 FCLs showing prorated commitments at this time. As noted above, we will share additional information about the issuance of revised FY2017 FCLs shortly, including updated invoicing instructions.

What this means for FY2018: As noted in the FCC’s RHC 2018 Funding Cap Order, the RHC Program funding cap for FY2018 will be $581 million, adjusted for inflation. As a reminder, the FY2018 filing window closed on Friday, June 29, 2018. Applicants are unable to submit funding requests at this time.

 

Important Reminders for FY2018

What to Do if You Receive an Information Request

As you submit your FCC Form 462 or 466, please upload all required documentation with your forms. FCC Forms submitted with incomplete or missing documentation will not be reviewed, and RHC reviewers will reach out to all account holders (the primary and all secondary and tertiary account holders associated with that HCP) with a request for additional information (“Information Request”). Information Requests are sent to collect any missing documentation, address deficiencies, or to ask clarifying questions about the FCC Form. If you receive an Information Request, you must respond to it within 14 calendar days. Once you respond, the RHC reviewers will work with you, to the extent they can, to ensure that they have all the necessary documentation to complete their review. Failure to respond within the 14 calendar day timeframe will result in an automatic denial, so be sure to meet that deadline! 

LOA/TPAs Must Be Up to Date

In order to be considered eligible for funding in FY2018, Letters of Agency (LOA) and Third Party Authorizations (TPA) must be up to date through a minimum of FY2018. Be especially mindful if you are an HCP using a consultant, a consortium leader, or a consultant filing on behalf of a consortium leader. Before submitting a form, please check to ensure your authorization documents are up to date.

FCC Forms 462 and 466 submitted with expired LOAs or TPAs will result in applicants receiving Information Requests.

For more information about submitting LOAs, please see the submission guide

7/6/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: Friday, July 6th


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will be unavailable starting Friday, July 6th from 10:00 p.m. EDT through midnight EDT for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC.

We apologize for any inconvenience.

7/3/2018RESOLVED - E-rate, High Cost, Rural Health Care Temporary Phone Outage


RESOLVED - The E-rate, High Cost, and Rural Health Care telephone lines are currently unavailable. This outage affects the following numbers:

  • (888) 203-8100
  • (844) 357-0408
  • (800) 453-1546

We are working on the issue and will provide an update once the issue is resolved. In the meantime, please submit any questions using the EPC ticketing system for E-rate and via email for High Cost and Rural Health Care. Thank you for your patience.

7/3/2018Carriers May Now Certify Form 481


The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has granted Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) approval to FCC Form 481. The certify button and bulk certification options are now active in the system, and carriers can make their final certifications.

7/3/2018News Brief Issued


The 7/3/2018 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.

6/29/2018News Brief Issued


The 6/29/2018 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.

6/29/2018Lifeline Program Newsletter - June 2018


The June 2018 issue of Lifeline Program News is now available. Sign up to receive the newsletter by email in the Subscription Center

 June Headlines:

  • National Verifier is Live in First-Wave States
  • Lifeline Support Center Updated Call Center Hours
  • Reminder: Universal Forms Requirement Begins July 1
  • USAC-Elected Recertification Elections for 2019 Opens July 16
  • Webinar on July 11: USAC-Elected Recertification

6/29/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: Saturday, June 30


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will be unavailable starting Saturday, June 30, from 10:00 p.m. EDT through midnight EDT for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. We apologize for any inconvenience.

6/28/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: Thursday, June 28


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will be unavailable starting Thursday, June 28, from 10:00 p.m. EDT through midnight EDT for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. We apologize for any inconvenience.

6/27/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: July 1-2


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) and the EPC training site will be unavailable from Sunday, July 1 at 7:00 p.m EDT through Monday, July 2 at 1:00 a.m. EDT for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. We apologize for any inconvenience.

6/26/2018Alaska Plan Middle Mile Data Filing Deadline Extended to August 1


On June 26, 2018, the Federal Communications Commission released a public notice (DA 18-666) extending this year's middle mile filing deadline for Alaska Plan carriers to August 1, 2018 in order to ensure that carriers have enough time to submit their middle mile data to the HUBB portal and ensure that the HUBB is able to accept all required carrier data.

6/25/2018FCC RHC 2018 Funding Cap Order


June 25, 2018 - The FCC has issued an Order that adopts rules to: (1) increase the annual RHC Program funding cap to $571 million and apply it to FY2017; (2) annually adjust the RHC Program funding cap for inflation, beginning with FY2018; and (3) establish a process to carry-forward unused funds from past funding years for use in future funding years. The rules shall become effective immediately upon publication of the Order in the Federal Register.

You can read and download the FCC’s RHC 2018 Funding Cap Order HERE.

Join us for an informational webinar on the FCC 2018 RHC Funding Cap Order
When: Tuesday, July 10, 2018 at 2:00 p.m.

Register today!
Can't make it? The webinar recording and an FAQ sheet will be posted to our website.

Additional information about what the 2018 Funding Cap Order means for program participants is forthcoming. General guidance for FY2017 and FY2018 funding requests (FCC Form 462 for the HCF Program and FCC Form 466 in the Telecom Program) is below. 

What this means for FY2017: Due to the increase in the RHC Program funding cap for FY2017, all previously approved FY2017 funding requests will receive 100% of their approved funding amount.  The proration that was previously applied to FY2017 funding commitments will be removed, and revised Funding Commitment Letters (FCLs) will be issued.  Please discontinue invoicing against the previously issued FY2017 FCLs showing prorated commitments at this time.  As noted above, we will share additional information about the issuance of revised FY2017 FCLs shortly, including updated invoicing instructions.  Program participants are also invited to join an informational webinar on July 10, 2018.

What this means for FY2018: As noted in the FCC’s RHC 2018 Funding Cap Order, the RHC Program funding cap for FY2018 will be $581 million, adjusted for inflation. As a reminder, the FY2018 filing window closes on Friday, June 29, 2018. To be considered eligible for funding, you must submit your funding requests (FCC Form 462 for the HCF Program and FCC Form 466 in the Telecom Program) by the close of the FY2018 filing window on June 29, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. ET. Funding requests submitted after the close of the FY2018 filing window will not be accepted. Submit your funding requests as soon as possible to avoid experiencing any last-minute challenges.

6/22/2018News Brief Issued


The 6/22/2018 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.

6/20/2018FCC Announces 3rd Quarter 2018 Contribution Factor Decrease to 17.9 Percent


The FCC released a Public Notice (DA 18-613) announcing that the proposed universal service contribution factor for the third quarter (July - September) of 2018 will be .179 or 17.9 percent.

6/20/2018June 2018 Contributor Invoice Summary Now Available Online


The June 2018 invoice summary for contributors is now online and available for filers to view in E-File. 

Watch this quick video to learn how to access your online invoice summary.

6/18/2018USAC Announces National Verifier Soft Launch


USAC is pleased to announce that the National Verifier is live and available for use in the first six states. The system, which will determine subscriber eligibility for the Lifeline Program, can now be used by service providers in Colorado, Mississippi, Montana, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming.

During this soft launch period, service providers can check consumers’ eligibility through the National Verifier service provider portal. Participation in the National Verifier during the soft launch window is optional for service providers in the initial launch states. USAC recommends that service providers take this time to use the system and ensure their processes and systems align with the National Verifier.

During the soft launch, only service providers can access the National Verifier. Later, beginning when the hard launch occurs, consumers will also be able to access the National Verifier directly to check their eligibility by visiting CheckLifeline.org or by sending paper applications to the Lifeline Support Center.

USAC will announce the National Verifier’s hard launch at a later date. At the hard launch, all service providers in the initial launch states must use the National Verifier to determine initial subscriber eligibility, and the National Verifier will conduct annual recertification.

More Information

Service providers and state partners in the initial launch states will receive a follow up communication outlining resources and upcoming training opportunities. Additional resources and National Verifier information can be found on the National Verifier page on USAC’s website.

6/18/2018Legacy System Outage Due to System Maintenance - June 18


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program legacy systems will be unavailable from 6:00-8:00 p.m. EDT on Monday, June 18 for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to file invoices and use some of the search tools. The BEAR training site will also be unavailable. We apologize for any inconvenience.

 

NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will not be affected by this maintenance.

6/15/2018News Brief Issued


The 6/15/2018 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.

6/14/2018Newsletter for June 2018


Upcoming Deadline Reminder: FY2018 Filing Window Closes June 29, 2018

The FY2018 filing window closes in two weeks, on Friday, June 29, 2018. To be considered eligible for funding, you must submit your funding requests (FCC Forms 462 for the HCF Program and FCC Forms 466 for the Telecom Program) by the close of the filing window on June 29, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. ET. Funding requests submitted after June 29, 2018 will not be accepted.

We would like to remind applicants to submit their funding request forms as soon as possible, so as to avoid running into any last minute challenges, such as system issues or password resets.

 

View our how-to guides and tip sheets to assist you during the submission process:

For more information on submitting funding requests:

Important Reminders for FY2018

What to Do if You Receive an Information Request

As you submit your FCC Form 462 or 466, please upload all required documentation with your forms. FCC Forms submitted with incomplete or missing documentation will not be reviewed, and RHC reviewers will reach out to all account holders (the primary and all secondary and tertiary account holders associated with that HCP) with a request for additional information (“Information Request”). Information Requests are sent to collect any missing documentation, address deficiencies, or to ask clarifying questions about the FCC Form. If you receive an Information Request, you must respond to it within 14 calendar days. Once you respond, the RHC reviewers will work with you, to the extent they can, to ensure that they have all the necessary documentation to complete their review. Failure to respond within the 14 calendar day timeframe will result in an automatic denial, so be sure to meet that deadline! 

LOA/TPAs Must Be Up to Date

In order to be considered eligible for funding in FY2018, Letters of Agency (LOA) and Third Party Authorizations (TPA) must be up to date through a minimum of FY2018. Be especially mindful if you are an HCP using a consultant, a consortium leader, or a consultant filing on behalf of a consortium leader. Before submitting a form, please check to ensure your authorization documents are up to date.

FCC Forms 462 and 466 submitted with expired LOAs or TPAs will result in applicants receiving Information Requests.

FY2017 Information

FY2017 Funding Information Available Now

FY2017 funding information was announced on March 16, 2018 and is available on our website here. Following the announcement, the RHC Program hosted a webinar further explaining the funding breakdown. The recording and slides are available on our website here: FY2017 Funding Information Webinar

 

Did you receive your FY2017 Funding Commitment Letter (FCL)? Download our How to Read your FY2017 FCL tip sheet. 

Let us know what you think about the information and resources provided by the RHC team for FY2017 by taking this survey

6/8/2018News Brief Issued


The 6/8/2018 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.

6/7/2018Rate Floor Data Due July 2, 2018


Incumbent local exchange carriers (ILECs) receiving High Cost support must file their annual rate floor data with USAC by July 2, 2018. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rules require carriers to report all residential rates in their service areas that fall below a minimum amount called the "rate floor," along with the number of lines served at those rates. The rate floor is currently set at $18.

Carriers must submit rates that met this criteria as June 1, 2018 by Monday, July 2, 2018. Carriers should use the rate floor data collection report and certification form on the High Cost Forms page and submit it via email to USAC at hccerts@usac.org. Carriers must also file this information with the FCC, relevant state commissions and U.S. Territory or Tribal governments as appropriate.   

 

6/7/2018FCC Extends Form 481 Deadline to July 16, 2018


On June 6, 2018, the FCC released a Public Notice (DA 18-585), allowing ETCs until July 16, 2018 to file the FCC Form 481 annual reports. Please note that affected carriers  must continue to report their rates pursuant to section 54.313(h) of the Commission’s rules on July 2, 2018.
  

6/1/2018News Brief Issued


The 6/1/2018 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.

6/1/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: June 3-4


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) and the EPC training site will be unavailable from Sunday, June 3 at 7:00 p.m EDT through Monday, June 4 at 1:00 a.m. EDT for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. We apologize for any inconvenience.

5/31/2018FCC Form 471 Data Tools Outage Resolved


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program FCC Form 471 data tools are now available. We apologize for the inconvenience.

5/30/2018My Portal Outage Due to System Maintenance Thursday, May 31


Rural Health Care's My Portal will be unavailable from 7:00 - 9:00 a.m. Thursday May 31, 2018 due to system maintenance. Online forms will not be accessible for health care providers or service providers. We apologize for any inconvenience.

5/30/2018Lifeline Program Newsletter - May 2018


The May 2018 issue of Lifeline Program News is now available. Sign up to receive the newsletter by email in the Subscription Center

 May Headlines:

  • Have You Started Using the New, Universal Lifeline Consumer Forms?
  • Mark Your Calendar: Enrollment in 2019 USAC-Elected Recertification Opens in July
  • Changes to NLAD Account Management Structure: One "ETC Admin" per SPIN
  • Notable updates to the NLAD and LCS Systems 
  • USF Funds Have Transferred to the U.S. Treasury
  • Lifeline's Document Retention Rules
  • Webinar on May 30: Universal Consumer Forms
  • Webinar on June 13: Annual Recertification Process

5/30/2018NLAD 3.20.0 Production Release


NLAD version 3.20.0 was released into the Production environment today, May 30, 2018.

A new third-party identification verification (TPIV) checking process in the National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) was released that will prevent NLAD users from enrolling deceased subscribers in the Lifeline Program.

This code was previously released to the pre-production environment in early May and is now available in the production environment.

Two New UI Error Messages:

New error message during verify transactions

      "TPIV WebService: Subscriber is identified as deceased" 

New error message during enroll and transfer transactions

      "TPIV_FAIL_DECEASED: Subscriber is identified as deceased" 

One New API Error Message:

"TPIV_FAIL_DECEASED: Subscriber is identified as deceased" 

One New Argument for POST/Resolution/Submit Request:

      Field name: fullNameDeceasedTCode
      Field description: Full Name Deceased Error Resolution Code
      Data description: Resolution error codes are required to complete a dispute resolution submission.
      These codes reference specific NLAD failures relating to third party identity verification (TPIV) errors.
      Required status: Conditional  Conditional requirements: Required if transaction error =
      TPIV_FAIL_DECEASED
      Type: Alpha-numeric
      Format: T14, T16, T18, T19, T20, T21, T22

Questions about NLAD?

If you have any questions, contact us at NLADSupport@usac.org or (877) 524-1325.  

        

5/29/2018RESOLVED - E-rate CSB Temporary Phone Outage


RESOLVED - The E-rate Client Service Bureau's (CSB) telephone line (888-203-8100) is currently unavailable. We are working on the issue and will provide an update once the issue is resolved. In the meantime, please submit any questions using the EPC ticketing system. Thank you for your patience.

5/25/2018News Brief Issued


The 5/25/2018 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.

5/24/2018Update on NLAD Performance


USAC would like to acknowledge and apologize for the service disruptions earlier this month with the National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD). NLAD is now stable and functioning normally, and USAC will continue monitoring the system's performance. 

We recognize that reliable NLAD performance is critical to successful program participation. USAC is revisiting its approach to continually releasing upgrades and enhancements to NLAD so that performance and stability keep pace with our ever-increasing data.

We appreciate your patience when the system isn't meeting expectations, and do our best to keep NLAD users informed during service disruptions via the NLAD Bulletin. If you have feedback about how we can improve our communications to NLAD users during service disruptions, kindly submit it to NLADsupport@usac.org. 

Sincerely,
Lifeline Program Team
Universal Service Administrative Company

5/23/2018Legacy System Outage Due to System Maintenance - May 24


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program legacy systems will be unavailable from 6:00-9:00 p.m. EDT on Thursday, May 24 for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to file invoices and use some of the search tools. The BEAR training site will also be unavailable. We apologize for any inconvenience.

NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will not be affected by this maintenance.

5/21/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: Monday, May 21


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will be unavailable starting Monday, May 21, from 7:00 p.m. EDT through midnight EDT for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. 

We apologize for any inconvenience.

5/21/2018My Portal Outage Due to System Maintenance Tuesday, May 29


Rural Health Care's My Portal will be unavailable from 7:00 - 9:00 a.m. Tuesday, May 29, 2018 due to system maintenance. Online forms will not be accessible for health care providers or service providers. We apologize for any inconvenience.

5/18/2018News Brief Issued


The 5/18/2018 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.

5/18/2018Legacy System Outage Due to System Maintenance - May 18-19


The Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program legacy systems will be unavailable from 8:00 p.m. EDT on Friday, May 18 through 2:00 a.m. EDT on Saturday, May 19 for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to file invoices and use some of the search tools. The BEAR training site will also be unavailable. We apologize for any inconvenience.

 

NOTE: The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will not be affected by this maintenance.

5/18/2018May 2018 Contributor Invoice Summary Now Available Online


The May 2018 invoice summary for contributors is now online and available for filers to view in E-File.  

Watch this quick video to learn how to access your online invoice summary

5/16/2018Scheduled System Maintenance on Friday, May 18 + "Confirm Link Up" Back Online


Scheduled System Maintenance Friday, May 18

The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) will be unavailable due to scheduled system maintenance starting Friday, May 18 at 10 p.m. until Saturday, May 19 at 4 a.m. ET. Please note the slightly longer maintenance window.

The NLAD pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

"Confirm Link Up" Functionality Available 

The "Confirm Link Up" functionality is back online as of today, May 16. "Confirm Link Up" was disabled on May 8 due to NLAD performance issues, but it is now available for carriers to use as usual.

Questions about NLAD?

If you have any questions, contact us at NLADSupport@usac.org or (877) 524-1325.

5/11/2018News Brief Issued


The 5/11/2018 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.

5/10/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: May 11-12


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will be unavailable from Friday, May 11 at 7:00 p.m EDT through Saturday, May 12 at 11:00 a.m. EDT for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC. We apologize for any inconvenience.

5/10/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) *TRAINING SITE* Outage Due to System Maintenance: May 10-11


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) *TRAINING SITE* will be unavailable from Thursday, May 10 at 7:00 p.m. EDT through Friday, May 11 at 10:00 a.m. EDT for system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use the training site. We apologize for any inconvenience.

5/9/2018Reminder: Request for Proposal (RFP) Opt-Out Available for FY2018


As mentioned in our Request for Services webinar, HCF Program applicants may choose to bypass the formal USAC RFP review when submitting their FCC Form 461. During the formal RFP review, RHC identifies areas of potential non-compliance with competitive bidding requirements and makes recommendations. Watch the webinar and download the slides and summary here

To opt-out of this formal review, applicants must email rhc-assist@usac.org at the time of FCC Form 461 submission.  

For more information about RFPs, please download the RFP Checklist

5/8/2018Temporary Fix for Time-Outs + "Confirm Link Up" is Disabled


Update to Enhance NLAD Performance

USAC is aware of the slow performance and time-outs that certain users are experiencing today in the National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD).

In response, USAC is temporarily disabling the "Confirm Link Up" functionality, which will increase the system's performance. Users will notice increased system performance shortly.

"Confirm Link Up" Function Disabled

To alleviate slow performance and time-outs in the NLAD system, USAC is disabling the "Confirm Link Up" functionality this afternoon, until mid-next week. 

The "Confirm Link Up" functionality verifies whether a subscriber already received Link Up at their address, and does not impact NLAD users' ability to enroll subscribers in Link Up. If a user attempts to use the "Confirm Link Up" functionality, they will receive an error message stating "Service Temporarily Unavailable."

The "Confirm Link Up" function will be available again mid-next week, once a permanent fix for NLAD's performance issues is in place.

We apologize for this inconvenience.

Questions about NLAD?

If you have any questions, contact us at NLADSupport@usac.org or (877) 524-1325.

 

5/4/2018My Portal Browser Issue


Some Rural Health Care account holders are reporting technical issues when logging into My Portal while using Google Chrome. If you are encountering these issues, please consider changing your internet browser and log in via Internet Explorer. We apologize for any inconvenience and thank you for your patience.

5/4/2018News Brief Issued


The 5/4/2018 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.

5/3/2018Newsletter for May 2018


Recommended Submission Milestones Approaching

To ensure that you stay on track with your forms and are able to submit your funding request before the FY2018 filing window closes, USAC has developed recommended submission milestones for all HCF and Telecom program forms. These milestones account for both the minimum competitive bidding time required under RHC Program rules and time for USAC review:

  • For individual HCPs and consortia in the HCF Program NOT using an RFP: we recommend submitting your FCC Form 461 by May 14, 2018.
  • For HCPs in the Telecom Program: we recommend submitting your FCC Form 465 by May 14, 2018. 

Please note that these suggested submission dates, not deadlines enforced by RHC Program rules. View all the recommended submission milestones for FY2018.

FY2018 Filing Window Closes June 29, 2018

The FY2018 filing window has been extended through June 29, 2018, giving applicants additional time to submit their FY2018 funding requests. To be considered eligible for funding, you must submit your funding requests (FCC Forms 462 for the HCF Program and FCC Forms 466 in the Telecom Program) by the close of the window on June 29, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. ET. Funding requests submitted after June 29, 2018 will not be accepted.

 

View our how-to guides and tip sheets to assist you during the submission process:

Read more about funding requests:

FY2017 Funding and Proration Information Available Now

USAC announced FY2017 funding and proration information on March 16, 2018 and this information is available on our website here. Following the announcement, the RHC Program hosted a webinar for individuals who received an FCL further explaining the proration factors and funding breakdown. The recording and slides are available on our website: FY2017 Funding Information Webinar.

 

Did you receive your FY2017 Funding Commitment Letter (FCL)? Download our How to Read your FY2017 FCL tip sheet. 

Important Reminders for FY2018

 

New Resource! Competitive Bidding FAQ: For FCC Forms 461 & FCC Forms 465 that receive one or zero bids, we have posted a printable PDF with best practices and answers to common questions. 

What to Do If You Receive an Information Request

As you submit your FCC Form 462 or 466, please upload all required documentation with your forms. Forms submitted with incomplete or missing documentation cannot be reviewed, and RHC reviewers will reach out to account holders with a request for additional information (an “Information Request”). RHC will also reach out with Information Requests to clarify specific items related to an application. If you receive an Information Request, you must respond to it within 14 calendar days. If requesting an extension, RHC must receive your request via email prior to the 14 calendar day deadline. Once you respond, the reviewers will be happy to work with you to ensure that they have all the necessary documentation to complete their review. Failure to respond in some fashion within the 14 calendar day timeframe results in a denial, so be sure to meet that deadline! 

LOA/TPAs Must Be Up to Date

In order to be considered eligible for funding in FY2018, Letters of Agency (LOA) and Third Party Authorizations (TPA) must be up to date through a minimum of Funding Year 2018. Be especially mindful if you are an HCP using a consultant, a consortium leader, or a consultant filing on behalf of a consortium leader. Before submitting a form, please check to ensure your authorization documents are up to date.

FCC Forms 462 and 466 submitted with expired LOAs or TPAs will result in applicants receiving Information Requests.

Service Provider FY2017 Voluntary Price Reductions per FCC 17-164

In December 2017, the FCC issued a waiver allowing, but not requiring, service providers to lower the cost of service on a one-time basis for HCPs which requested Telecom and/or HCF program support in FY2017. Under this order, the amount of RHC Program funding committed would not change, but service providers may voluntarily reduce the cost of service for HCPs up to the amount by which their RHC Program support was impacted by proration in FY2017.

This order does not affect FY2018 funding requests or funding determinations in any way. HCPs and service providers should determine on their own whether they want to participate. If a service provider reduces its rate downward, that change will not affect the original FCL or any of the language or dollar amounts located therein.

If you decide to take advantage of this waiver, you must notify USAC within 90 days of receiving your FY2017 FCL. Documentation should be emailed to RHC-Assist@usac.org. The email should include the following subject line: “FY17 Service Provider Voluntary Price Reductions [include FRN no.]”

Please include the following information in your email:

A statement signed by the service provider and the HCP detailing the reduction in cost of service. Specifically, this statement must include:

  • Date
  • HCP name
  • HCP number
  • Funding Request Number (FRN)
  • Service Provider Identification Number (SPIN)
  • Total cost to be remitted by HCP to the service provider
  • Affirmative statement detailing the nature and impact regarding a reduction in the cost of service

A record or documentation from the service provider to the HCP that memorializes the reduction in the cost of service, to include:

  • Type of Service
  • Cost of Service
  • Dates of Service

If you have any questions about service provider voluntary reductions, please email RHC-Assist@usac.org.

USF Disbursements Will Now Be Coming from the U.S. Treasury

As of May 2018, USAC will accept payments to and distribute funds from the U.S. Treasury. Note: This is not a change to USAC’s administration of the universal service fund (USF). 

For those service providers in the RHC Program receiving disbursements from USAC, no changes are needed. Disbursements will come from the U.S. Treasury, continue to be made via ACH transfers, and continue to be identified as coming from USAC. In the Rural Health Care Program, invoices that are approved by USAC are typically processed on the upcoming payment batch date, which occur on the 6th and the 21st of each month. If the payment batch date falls on a weekend or holiday, the payment batch date will be on the next business day.

Service providers can expect the payment from the approved submitted invoices to USAC to be reflected in their bank accounts approximately three business days after the payment batch date.

Read more about program disbursements and check your invoice deadline using our lookup tool

5/2/2018NLAD Service Temporarily Restored; Additional Maintenance Tonight


NLAD & LCS Service Restored Temporarily

The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) and Lifeline Claims System (LCS) is back in service temporarily this afternoon and will remain available until 9:00 p.m. ET.

Transaction reports will not be available during this time. Additional maintenance is required to restore report functionality; USAC will conduct additional unscheduled maintenance tonight, May 2, starting at 9:00 p.m. ET.

Early Reimbursement Payment Deadline Extension

The deadline to submit Lifeline reimbursement claims and receive same-month payment will be extended until Thursday, May 10.                     
Unscheduled Maintenance Tonight, May 2

The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) and the Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable due to unscheduled system maintenance tonight, Wednesday, May 2, 2018, from 9:00 p.m. ET to 9:00 am ET on Thursday, May 3, 2018.

We sincerely apologize for the disruption. 

 

5/2/2018E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) Outage Due to System Maintenance: Sunday, May 6


The E-rate Productivity Center (EPC) will be unavailable starting Sunday, May 6, from 7:00 p.m EDT through midnight EDT for monthly system maintenance. During this time, users will be unable to log in to and use EPC.

The EPC training site will also be unavailable during this time. We apologize for any inconvenience.

5/2/2018NLAD & LCS Out of Service


NLAD & LCS Out of Service

The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) and Lifeline Claims System (LCS) are out of service at this time. We will provide another update as soon as possible.

Additional maintenance is required to restore report functionality; USAC will conduct additional unscheduled maintenance tonight, May 2, starting at 9:00 p.m. ET.

Early Reimbursement Payment Deadline Extension

The deadline to submit Lifeline reimbursement claims and receive same-month payment will be extended. We will announce the new early payment deadline once NLAD and the LCS are functioning normally.

Unscheduled Maintenance Tonight, May 2

The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) and the Lifeline Claims System (LCS) will be unavailable due to unscheduled system maintenance tonight, Wednesday, May 2, 2018, from 9:00 p.m. ET to 9:00 am ET on Thursday, May 3, 2018.

We sincerely apologize for this disruption and are working diligently to resolve the issue. 

 

5/2/2018NLAD Unscheduled Maintenance until Noon ET


The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) unscheduled maintenance is still underway this morning. We estimate the system will be back in service at noon ET today. We will provide another update at noon ET.  

5/1/2018Update + Unscheduled System Maintenance Tonight


NLAD and LCS Update

The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) is back in service. To resume service, USAC disabled the NLAD transaction reports (both the Summary and Detailed Transaction Reports), which will not be available for use today.

The May 1 NLAD Snapshot Reports are available in NLAD now; however, the data will not be available in the Lifeline Claims System (LCS) for some users until later today.

USAC is working to increase the performance of transactions, and will closely monitor NLAD today and tomorrow. To fix the issues with transaction reports, USAC is conducting unscheduled NLAD maintenance today, May 1, 2018. Access to the reports will be restored tomorrow, May 2.

Unscheduled NLAD Maintenance Today, May 1

The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) will be unavailable due to unscheduled system maintenance today, Tuesday, May 1, 2018, from 6 p.m. ET to Wednesday, May 2, 2018 at 6 a.m. ET.

Both the NLAD and LCS pre-production and production environments will not be available for use during this time.

We apologize for the inconvenience and early maintenance start time. The start time was selected due to the complexity of the issue, and the length of time required to fix it.

Questions about NLAD?

If you have any questions, contact us at NLADSupport@usac.org or (877) 524-1325.

 

5/1/2018NLAD Currently Down


The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) is currently out of service. USAC is aware of the issue and is actively working toward a resolution. We will provide an update shortly.

Questions about NLAD?

If you have any questions, contact us at NLADSupport@usac.org or (877) 524-1325.

 

5/1/2018My Portal Outage Due to System Maintenance Thursday May 3, 2018


Rural Health Care's My Portal will be unavailable from 9:00 - 11:00 p.m. ET Thursday, May 3, 2018 due to system maintenance. Online forms will not be accessible for health care providers or service providers. We apologize for any inconvenience.

5/1/2018Budget Control Mechanism for 2018-2019 Now Available


USAC announces support calculations for the budget control mechanism for July 2018 through June 2019, as required by the FCC’s Rate-of-Return Reform Order. Please see the Budget Control Mechanism for Rate of Return Carriers page for more information.

4/30/2018NLAD Intermittent Connectivity Issues


The National Lifeline Accountability Database (NLAD) experienced intermittent connectivity issues between 2:45 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. ET. This was affecting some users' ability to conduct transactions in NLAD and was causing slow response times to API requests.

USAC is actively working to resolve the issue and is closely monitoring the system as we resolve the underlying problems which caused performance issues over the last week.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

Questions about NLAD? 

If you have any questions, contact us at NLADSupport@usac.org or (877) 524-1325.

 

4/27/2018News Brief Issued


The 4/27/2018 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.

4/26/2018