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October 2004 Announcements

Please click on the topic below to view the most recent announcements:


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2005 Eligible Services List Now Available (10/29/04)

The Eligible Services List to be used for Fund Year 2005 is now available. Go to the Eligible Services List.

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FCC Registration Numbers (FCC RNs) (10/21/04, revised 10/29/04)

The Fifth Report and Order (FCC 04-190, released August 13, 2004) states that all participants in the E-Rate program must obtain an FCC Registration Number (FCC RN). Participants are required to obtain at least one FCC RN for each Taxpayer Identification Number by November 1, 2004, pursuant to Public Notice DA 04-2994 (released September 16, 2004) and Public Notice FCC 04-230 (released September 28, 2004).

FCC RNs are required for entities that do business with the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Therefore, if your entity already has an FCC license (for example, for ITFS or a radio station), you may already have an FCC RN. If you already have an FCC RN, you do not need to get a new one simply for the purposes of E-rate.

We anticipate that we will be able to provide a procedure to assist applicants in obtaining FCC RNs corresponding to individual Entity Numbers by the opening of the Form 471 application filing window. However, this does not relieve your obligation to obtain at least one FCC RN by November 1. For now, please be aware that, although Form 470 and Form 471 for Funding Year 2005 do not have fields for FCC RNs, you will be asked to provide FCC RNs for all Billed Entities and recipients of service during PIA review.

Who Should Obtain an FCC RN

The following entities participating in the E-rate program must have FCC RNs:

  • Schools – includes individual schools, school districts, ESAs, and school administrative (non-instructional) facilities
  • Libraries – includes library outlets/branches, library systems and library administrative (non-instructional) facilities
  • Consortium Leaders and Consortium Members
  • Service Providers
  • Consultants
  • Entities that file Forms 470 and/or Forms 471 that do not appear above

NOTE: Although an entity may have only one Taxpayer Identification Number (see below), that entity may have to obtain more than one FCC RN. While we encourage entities to obtain all of the FCC RNs that they need on their own, the law requires that they obtain at least one FCC RN by November 1, 2004.

Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) / Employer Identification Number (EIN)

A Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) is a nine-digit number that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) requires of all individuals, businesses, and other employers to identify their tax accounts with the IRS.

  • For an individual, the TIN is the person’s Social Security Number.
  • For employers, including state and local government agencies and non-profit organizations, the TIN is the IRS-issued Employer Identification Number (EIN).
  1. Each FCC RN must have a TIN/EIN associated with it.
  2. If your TIN/EIN is already associated with an FCC RN and the name on the FCC RN is not correct, call the FCC Registration Number Helpline at 1-877-480-3201.

How to Obtain an FCC RN

You can apply online for an FCC RN from the FCC web site.

  • Follow the link to the “FCC Registration Number Commission Registration System (CORES)” on the left hand side of the screen.
  • Follow the link to “Register” under “Register and Receive your FRN.”

We strongly encourage you to apply online. However, you can also file a paper copy of the CORES Registration Form. This form can also be faxed to you by contacting the FCC Registration Number Helpline at 1-877-480-3201. The instructions to the Form 160 include directions for filing. Should you have any further questions about filing on paper, contact the FCC Registration Number Helpline.

Helpful Tips for Applying for an FCC RN

Because the CORES system is used in conjunction with many different FCC programs, the information requested in the application process may not closely match that of the entities that participate in the E-rate program. NOTE: We do not use the type and subtype information you provide in this application for our review of funding requests.

1. Business Type and Subtype

  • For Public Schools and Public Libraries – select “State or Local Agency”
    • For Subtype – select the option that is most appropriate
    • If you are not sure which option applies, select “State or Local Commission”
  • For Non-Public (Private) Entities – select “Private Sector”
    • For Subtype – select the option that is most appropriate
  • For Consultants – select “Private Sector”
    • For Subtype – select the option that is most appropriate

2. Business Name

  • Name of the individual entity
    • For an entity with an Entity Number, this should be the name of the individual school, school district, library outlet/branch, library system, consortium leader or non-instructional facility associated with the Entity Number.
    • For a Billed Entity, this should be the name of the Billed Entity associated with the Billed Entity Number.
    • For service providers, this should be the name of the entity associated with the Service Provider Identification Number (SPIN).
    • For all others, this should be the business name of the entity.

3. Organization Name

  • If the “Business Name” entered above is for the entity responsible for the E-rate application process, re-enter the “Business Name” for the “Organization Name.”
  • If the “Business Name” entered above is for an individual recipient of service that is NOT the entity responsible for the E-rate application process, enter the name of the entity responsible for the E-rate application process for the “Organization Name.” Most likely, the “Organization Name” will be the name of the Billed Entity.

4. Contact Person

  • Enter the name of the person at the entity that is responsible for the E-rate application process.

If you need more information, please contact one of the following:

  • FCC Registration Number Helpline at 1-877-480-3201
  • SLD Client Service Bureau at 1-888-203-8100.

 

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Registration Open For 2004 Service Provider Training in Providence, Rhode Island (10/28/04)

SLD is pleased to announce that registration for service provider training in Providence, Rhode Island is now open for registration. Click the following link for more information, 2004 SP Training. This link can also be found under the Training and Outreach bar on SLD's home page. Please note that SLD will be providing training in Providence instead of Chicago.

Service providers will be required to pre-register and guarantee payment in advance. The Training Agenda and Presentations and Draft Forms for the training sessions are available on the 2004 Service Provider Training page. Attendees should print out hard copies of the training materials, because no hard copies will be provided at the workshops. Please submit your inquiries with respect to the SP training only by clicking here.

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Priorities for Making Funding Commitments if Unobligated Cash is Insufficient to Issue All Pending Commitments (10/27/04)

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) began treating funding commitment decision letters (FCDLs) issued for the Universal Service Schools and Libraries and Rural Health Care Support Mechanisms as budgetary obligations on September 30, 2004. At that time, the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) began tracking the amount of unobligated Universal Service Fund (USF) monies on hand to support new funding commitments. USAC expects that, going forward, at various times, it may have less unobligated cash than the total dollar value of new commitments ready to be issued. View full article

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Three Audit Documents Posted to Reference Area (10/25/04)

Three documents related to audits have been posted to the Reference Area of this web site. These documents contain information gleaned from beneficiary audits conducted under the Schools and Libraries Support Mechanism.

Beneficiary Audits - Auditors’ Observations replaces the document Beneficiary Audits - Preliminary Auditors’ Observations. This document lists the observations made by auditors during the audits for Funding Year 2000.

Audits of Beneficiaries Fact Sheet is an updated version of an existing document. This document provides a short description of the audit process and provides a list of documents auditors will request as part of an audit.

Best Practices is a new document that provides information on best practices. These practices, if followed, will assist applicants and service providers to comply with program rules.

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Two October Deadlines for Certain Applicants (10/20/04)

Two important deadlines are approaching for certain Funding Year 2004 and Funding Year 2003 applicants.

The deadline for postmarking invoices (Form 472 BEAR Forms and Form 474 SPI Forms) for FY2003 recurring services is October 28, 2004. For more information, please refer to Invoicing Deadlines and Extension Requests posted in the Reference Area of this web site.

If your FY2004 FCDL was dated on or before July 1, 2004 and your Service Start Date for FY2004 services is July 1, 2004, your Form 486 must be received or postmarked no later than October 29, 2004. For more information, please refer to Form 486 Deadlines posted in the Reference Area of this web site. Remember that if you received a partial funding commitment on a funding request and are appealing that reduction, you must still meet the Form 486 deadline for that funding request.

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WebEx Recordings of SLD Presentations made at the 2004 Annual SLD Train the Trainer Workshop Will Be Available October 15, 2004 (10/13/04)

Key SLD topics covered by SLD staff at the 2004 SLD TTT Workshop have been recorded and will be available October 15, 2004. Recorded sessions will be posted on the SLD’s WebEx site. Please follow the link to Recorded Sessions. If you need more information on WebEx recordings, you can access the SLD’s WebEx Recordings page by following the WebEx Recording link under the Training and Outreach bar on the left side of SLD’s website.

Please submit any questions regarding WebEx training and/or the recordings via e-mail.

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Registration for WebEx Training Sessions Opens on October 15 (10/13/04)

A series of live E-rate training sessions will be offered via WebEx to service providers, applicants and consultants. The sessions will begin on October 20, 2004 and run through the first week of February 2005. Each session will be offered several times so participants can choose a time that best fits their schedules.

The topics covered in the training sessions will be the same as those offered during the Train-the-Trainer workshop held on September 27–29, 2004. To review those presentations, you can visit the “Train-the-Trainer” Presentations 2004 page in the Reference Area of this web site.

If you would like to attend a live training session, please note the following:

  1. In order to register for a live session, you must first have reviewed the associated recorded session. Recorded sessions will be posted on the SLD’s WebEx site by October 14, 2004. If you need more information on WebEx recordings, you can access the SLD’s WebEx Recordings page by following the WebEx Recordings link under the Training and Outreach bar on this web site.
  2. Registration for each session will be limited to 98 participants. The SLD reserves the right to limit the number of participants to one participant per individual company per session.
  3. WebEx will provide an e-mail notification to each successful registrant chosen to participate. If you do not receive an e-mail from WebEx with the session number and password, you have not been chosen to participate for that session.
  4. You will be asked to provide an identification number as part of the registration process. Please respond according to the following guidance:
    • Service providers - enter your SPIN in the SPIN field
    • Consultants who primarily serve service providers - enter 143000000 in the SPIN field
    • Applicants - enter your BEN in the BEN field
    • Consultants who primarily serve applicants - enter 999999 in the BEN field
    • All others - enter 000000 in the BEN field.

All required fields in the registration form must be properly completed before the SLD can make a decision on your request to participate in a session.
If you have any questions, please submit them by e-mail.

 

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NOTICE REGARDING TEMPORARY SUSPENSION OF SCHOOLS AND LIBRARIES AND RURAL HEALTH CARE SUPPORT MECHANISM FUNDING COMMITMENTS (10/12/04)

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) directed the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC), the administrator of the Schools and Libraries (E-rate) and Rural Health Care Universal Service Support Mechanisms, to change USAC’s accounting methodology by October 1, 2004 to the same methodology that the Federal Government uses. Among other things, we were informed that this required USAC to change the rules that we use to account for various financial transactions, including funding commitments in those programs. The accounting changes were not intended to have any impact on the way in which we administer the programs themselves. View full article

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Register For 2004 Service Provider Training Workshops (10/8/04)

SLD is pleased to announce that it will be providing a series of three 2-day live training sessions for service providers. Click the following link for more information, 2004 SP Training. This link can also be found under the Training and Outreach bar on SLD's home page.

Service providers will be required to pre-register and guarantee payment in advance. The Training Agenda and Presentations for the training sessions will be available in advance of the sessions on the 2004 Service Provider Training page. Attendees should print out hard copies of the training materials, because no hard copies will be provided at the workshops. Please submit your inquiries with respect to the SP training only by clicking here.

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Draft Forms and Presentations from Train-the-Trainer Workshop Available (10/5/04)

The SLD held a Train-the-Trainer workshop on September 27–29, 2004, in Arlington, Virginia. The presentations from this workshop have been posted to the "Train-the-Trainer" 2004 Workshop Presentations page in the Reference Area of this web site.

Drafts of applicant program forms were distributed at this workshop for reference purposes, and copies of those draft forms can also be accessed from this page. The Draft Form 470 and Draft Form 471 are the final drafts submitted for approval to the Office of Management and Budget; all other draft forms on this page are preliminary drafts that have been modified only by additions or changes to certifications that were mandated by the FCC’s Fifth Report and Order.

 

Content Last Modified: December 10, 2004