Category 1 Form 471 Filing Hints

February 27, 2018 

Attached: Form 471 Category 1 Filing Guide FY 2018

Congratulations to the 302 PA entities that have filed FY 2018 Form 471s thus far!  Of the 595 FRNs filed thus far, and 355 of them are already in “Wave Ready” status.  There are only 23 days remaining in the FY 2018 Form 471 filing window and I encourage you to not wait until the end of the window to file.  Below are Quick Steps and Hints/Reminders make your Category 1 Form 471 filings and subsequent PIA reviews as painless as possible (and the FY 2018 C1 Filing Guide is attached).  Please be sure to read this message before filing your C1 applications.

Quick Steps for New Services/Contracts:

Quick Steps for Existing Services/Contracts:


  1. Voice Services Eligibility for FY 2018

I’ve received a few questions about the eligibility of voice services for FY 2018.  FY 2018 is the final year for voice services, with the only applicants with a 90% Category 1 discount still eligible to receive those discounts, which will be at a 10% discount rate.    For cellular services (for the very few applicants that still qualify):  Always choose “cellular voice, no data” to describe your service, even if you’re actually receiving bundled services from vendor (such as a bundled voice/data plan).  The only exception to this is if you qualify for the very limited mobile broadband services (such as for bookmobiles).  List the total cost of cellular services, then show ineligible amount.  In other words, don’t do the math offline and simply enter the eligible cost because you want PIA to see that you’ve subtracted the ineligible costs.  It’s also a good idea to say what was removed as ineligible in the narrative box (data services, voice mail, caller ID, text messaging, etc.).

  1. Don’t Use “Copy FRN” Feature

I’ve recently worked with several applicants having trouble submitting their FY 2018 Form 471s and the commonality seems to be whether they used the Copy FRN Feature.  Therefore, starting now, I recommend that applicants NOT use this feature when creating their Form 471 FRNs for FY 2018.  Note: If you’ve already created an FRN using the Copy FRN feature, and if you encounter a problem, delete the FRN and start over.

  1. Changing/Updating Enrollment & NSLP Data

Although it’s too late up update your EPC Profile (the Admin Window closed on January 10), if you find that you forgot to update your data or found inaccuracies, you can still make corrections.  In the 471 FRN Narrative Box, explain your updated enrollment/NSLP data.  Then, after the 471 is submitted, submit a RAL Modification using these steps:  From your EPC Landing Page > Name of District or Library > Forms (from top toolbar) > Form 471 > FY 2018 > Select 471 Number > Related Actions (from top toolbar) > Submit Modification Request (RAL) > Answer the appropriate questions in the RAL Correction module.  Use the “Entity” portion of the RAL Modification module to update the enrollment/NSLP data.

  1. Handing Contract Amendments in EPC

Unfortunately, there’s no way to modify or add additional documents to your existing Contract Record in EPC.  If you amended your contract (perhaps to upgrade bandwidth), PIA may reach out to you to ask why the requested services/amounts are different than what are contained in your original contract in which case you’ll simply send them the contract amendment.  Do not create a new contract record simply because a contract was amended.

  1. Answering Yes/No Form 471 Questions for Internet and Data FRNs
  • Answer 2nd Question first (is this for a WAN?)
  • If the answer to the 2nd Question is Yes, then the answer to 1st question is No
  • Internet FRNs should almost always answer No/Yes.  There is a small exception for consortia backbone applications where they would answer No/No.
  1. Break Out Unit Costs into separate FRN Line Items

After you’ve created an FRN, click on the FRN number in blue (it’s hyperlinked) and a page will appear asking if you want to “Add New FRN Line Item.”  Continue adding Line Items for that FRN until you’ve built your FRN.  For WAN FRNs, you should list the cost of each circuit, and the # of circuits (units).  Add a separate FRN Line Item for taxes/fees (these can be a unit quantity of 1).

  1. Finding Contracts Records to Select After Clicking Search

When you create an FRN in the 471, the system asks if it’s based on a contracted service or MTM service.  If you choose Contract, the system will ask which contract you want to associate with that FRN.  If you forgot to create your Contract Record in the EPC Contract Module prior to starting the 471, no worries – add them now.  In a separate tab, go to your Landing Page > Name of your District > Contracts > Manage Contracts > Add a Contract.  Then create a Contract Record for each separate contract you have (both C1 and C2).  The Contract Module Guide can be found at:

Julie Tritt Schell
PA E-rate Coordinator
717-730-7133 – o
717-730-9060 – f


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