February 2020 E-rate Update

February 18, 2020

~ 36 Days Until the Form 471 Deadline ~

Time Running Out to Post 470s

If you haven’t done so already, it’s time to post any last minute Category 2 Form 470s or PEPPM mini-bids for new equipment, or Category 1 Form 470’s for services needing a new contract or MTM services (must be filed annually).  The very last day that you can post a 470 is February 26, but this only leaves the final day of the Form 471 window – March 25 — to evaluate your bids, obtain local approvals, sign contracts, upload contracts and complete the 471.  Please don’t wait another minute to file your Form 470!

Form 471 Webinars This Week

If you would like a tutorial on filing a Form 471 for Category 1 and/or Category 2, please plan to attend one of the webinars being conducted this week:  Category 1 – Thursday (1:00 – 2:00), and Category 2 – Friday (11:00 – noon).  Registration and details at:  http://e-ratepa.org/?page_id=745.

E-rate Workshops at PETE & C Conference Next Week

The FY 2020 PETE & C Technology Conference is being held in Pittsburgh next week and for those of you in attendance I’ll be conducting two E-rate sessions:

  • E-rate for Beginners!  A Crash Course:  Monday, February 24 from 2:30 – 3:30 pm in room 323 of the conference center.
  • E-rate Category 2 – Changes for FY 2020 and 2021:  Tuesday, February 25 from 9:30 – 10:30 am in room 323 of the conference center.

Calculating Remaining Category 2 Budgets for FY 2020

We now know that FY 2020 has become the 6th year of the first Category 2 budget cycle, giving applicants one final year to access “unspent” C2 funds, as well as providing a (very sweet) 20% bump in the multiplier to account for the extra year.  The C2 funding allocation will remain BY SCHOOL/LIBRARY for FY 2020, and will not transition to the district-wide budgets until FY 2021.  We also know that you should NEVER, EVER request more E-rate funding than what is in your C2 budget, therefore it’s important to check your calculations before submitting the Form 471.  To calculate the remaining, I recommend you use this C2 Budget tracking tools at:  https://www.fundsforlearning.com/FFLServices/c2budgetcalculator.php.  The remaining pre-discount C2 budget by school or library is located in the second-to-last column on the results page (circled in red below).  (The last column on the right is simply the remaining C2 budget x district discount and it is NOT your remaining C2 budget.)


Congrats to the 252 PA Entities Who Have Submitted 471s!

I’m so pleased that 252 PA schools and libraries have already submitted their FY 2020 Form 471s, and I’m even more excited to report that 147 FRNs are already in Wave Ready Status (and another 88 are in Final or QA Review Status).  If your competitive bidding is complete and your have obtained signed contracts – or if you’re in a multi-year contract that was signed in a previous year – you should proceed with the Form 471 filing as soon as you can to be virtually assured of receiving an early funding commitment decision.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me at jtschell@comcast.net!

Happy filing!

– Julie

Julie Tritt Schell
Pennsylvania E-rate Coordinator
717-730-7133 – o

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