The Universal Service Schools and Libraries Program, commonly known as the E-rate Program, helps ensure that schools and libraries can obtain high-speed Internet access and telecommunications at affordable rates. E-rate related questions should be sent to email@example.com, or call the Learning Infrastructure Coordinator at 804-786-9281. You can also call the USAC Client Services Bureau for help at 888-203-8100.
Step 1: Competitive Bidding
- Filing FCC Form 470 Deadlines: The FCC Form 470 must be posted to the USAC website at least 28 days before the close of the application filing window for the funding year in order for it to be cited on a timely filed FCC Form 471.
- Mini-Bid process using VITA State master contracts-This is a Word document.
Step 2: Selecting Service Providers
- VITA State Master Contracts for Category 1 and Category 2
- VITA Broadband Zip Code Search
- Resources to use for the mini-bid process using VITA state master contracts:
- Mini-Bid Template Letter (Word) – updated November, 2020
- Mini-bid Worksheet-This is an excel spreadsheet.
- Service Provider Contact List-This is an excel spreadsheet. – updated November, 2020, for Cat 1 only. VITA is in the process of conducting replacement contracts for E-rate Cat 2 networking equipment and cabling as of November 2020.
- Bid Evaluation Template (Word)
Step 3: Applying for Discounts
- Filing the FCC Form 471
- Virginia Public School Authority (VPSA) documentation to use as match for special construction
- VSPA Grant Allocations for E-rate
Step 4: Application Review
Step 5: Starting Services
- Instructions for filing FCC Form 486 (Deadline:120 days after notice of funding, due after receipt of your FCDL). For Form 498 help call 888-641-8722, M-F, 9:30a.m. - 4:30p.m.
Step 6: Invoicing
- Instructions for filing FCC Form 472 BEAR (Billed Entity Application Reimbursement)
- Filing the FCC Form 498
Federal Communications (FCC) & Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) Information
- The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) creates the regulations for Universal Service. The Telecommunications Act of 1996 is on this site as well as Universal Service regulations, changes and reports on FCC decisions related to discounts.
- The Universal Services Administrative Company (USAC) is an independent not-for-profit designated by the FCC. USAC administers the Universal Service Fund, almost $10 billion available annually to the companies and institutions that make universal service possible.
- USAC Weekly News Briefs
USAC Tools & Other Information
- Search for Billed Entity Number (BEN) Information
- Urban/Rural Lookup Tool
- E-rate C2 Budget Tool 2021+
- E-rate Trainings
- E-rate Central
- Funds For Learning (FFL)
- Manufacturer's websites provide cost allocation details for for E-rate eligible services