July 21, 2015
USAC Undertakes Data Cleanup Effort
In the E-rate Modernization Order released July 23, 2014, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) adopted transparency requirements for E-rate recipients and vendors beginning in Funding Year 2015 (FY2015). The FCC indicated that pricing transparency will give applicants visibility into pricing and technology that will help them make educated buying decisions. The FCC instructed USAC to make services and equipment purchased by schools and libraries with E-rate funds publicly available on USAC’s website for FY2015 and beyond.
Having accurate data is vital to the success of this effort, and we strongly encourage applicants to supply complete and correct information on their program forms. The benefits of this effort include:
USAC will be able to display accurate data on its website, clearly feature the services applicants purchased, and provide the correct pricing for those services.
For the first time, data can be easily carried forward into the following funding year so applicants can be assured of starting with correct information.
Applicants will also be able to compare prices for like services and help foster a competitive marketplace and make effective use of E-rate funds.
USAC can clearly demonstrate program outcomes and successes effectively with correct data in our system.
To accomplish this, USAC is undertaking an effort to verify FY2015 FCC Form 471 Category One data.
USAC plans to start the data "cleanup" efforts in the very near future, and this effort should be completed by the middle of September. Applicants will receive an email from USAC asking one to three basic questions with respect to their Category One services and requesting that applicants reply to USAC within five days. For example, USAC might ask: "Do the broadband services requested reflect the appropriate speed to ensure data quality on the FCC Form 471?" All applicants contacted are strongly urged to respond promptly to support this effort and help to accomplish the benefits that we have described above.
This effort will have no effect on the pace of funding decisions.
Note that not all applicants will be a part of the data cleanup as not all applications contain services that require a change. However, cleaning up the existing data – and working to supply accurate data going forward – will clearly have benefits for all applicants.
If a change is required to an application, the change will be reflected in the Funding Commitment Decision Letter (FCDL). If you already received your decision letter, you will receive a Revised FCDL. The Revised FCDL will have NO IMPACT on the level of funding approved by USAC.
If you have questions, please contact the USAC Client Service Bureau at (888) 203-8100.