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E-Rate for Tennessee Intermediate/Advanced Applicants Presented by: Kim Friends State E-Rate Coordinator for the Tennessee Department of Education.

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Presentation on theme: "E-Rate for Tennessee Intermediate/Advanced Applicants Presented by: Kim Friends State E-Rate Coordinator for the Tennessee Department of Education."— Presentation transcript:

1 E-Rate for Tennessee Intermediate/Advanced Applicants Presented by: Kim Friends State E-Rate Coordinator for the Tennessee Department of Education

2 General Information E-rate Technology Planning Discount Calculations/Strategies Eligible Services Forms 470/471 Procurement/Competitive Bidding Program Compliance and Updates E-rate Gift Rules Post-Commitment Processes Agenda

3 TDoE has no statutory authority to administer the federal E-Rate program TDoE only provides general information about the E-Rate program including: training and outreach, reference materials, and other publicly available SLD/USAC resources The Role of TN Dept. of Ed

4 Contracted with by TDoE to serve as TN State E-rate Coordinator Provide outreach and training to applicants in TN Represent TN before federal policymakers Maintain TN E-rate website and listserve Act as resource when E-rate administrator cant help What is Kims Role?

5 Tennessee E-Rate Website

6 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation E-Rate Technology Planning

7 Tech plans ensure that schools and libraries are prepared to effectively use the requested services to integrate telecommunications and internet access into the educational program or library services that they provide to students. Purpose of the Tech Plan

8 Technology Plan Review ONLY required if applying for Priority 2 funding Plan must include four SLD technology plan criteria Goals and Strategies for using technology Needs Assessment Professional Development Evaluation Must align with funding requests Must be written before 470 is filed Be sure to document the existence of this draft plan Must cover full 12 months of upcoming funding year (include dates!) 3 year maximum

9 1.Must be Written prior to posting Form 470: It must be documented that it is written before the posting of the form 470! (Applicant must document the existence of this plan, i.e., with plan attached, memo from cabinet level about the plan being written, including the date. DATE STAMP) 2.Must include a sufficient level of detail and cover all services (priority 2) for which E-Rate discounts are being sought on the Form 470(s) and subsequent Form 471(s). 3.Must be approved by the start of services (July 1) or the filing of Form 486, whichever is earlier 4.E-rate Tech Plans must be approved by a USAC Certified Technology Plan Approver see USAC link: 5.Must include all four required elements (as noted previously) Must Do Reminders

10 Service Providers may not act as technology plan approvers, write/create, or assist in the tech plan in any capacity (except as offering technology/provider neutral information only) Remember to include in your tech plan all the services that you apply for on Form 470/471, required for Priority 2 – (Internal connections and Basic Maintenance of Internal Connections) Additional Reminders

11 There are some non-starters that will require revision (even to draft plans) If your dates have not been changed throughout the entire document to reflect the period for which the draft is being written, revisions will be required The TDoE and my office will be presenting a Technology Planning workshop toward the end of January, 2013 to help those of you who actually need your plans APPROVED before July 1, Stand by for details Additional Reminders

12 your questions/concerns to the TennSEC office at or your draft plans for verification of receipt and review in anticipation of approval. Tech Plan approval letters will be issued from the TN State E-Rate Coordinators Office. Tech Plan Help and Approval

13 Questions?

14 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation Discounts

15 Calculate the discount rate for each individual school School District average = weighted average of the schools Multiply E-Rate discount by total student population of the school to get weighted product Add all weighted products and divide by total students in school district Discounts are based on schools actually receiving services in the FRN (may not be all schools in the district) Schools/School Districts Calculating Your Discount

16 Calculating Your Discount – Using the Matrix INCOME Measured by % of students eligible for NSLP URBAN LOCATION Discount RURAL LOCATION Discount If the % of students in your school that qualifies for the NSLP......and you are in an URBAN area, your discount will be......and you are in a RURAL area, your discount will be... Less than 1%20%25% 1% to 19%40%50% 20% to 34%50%60% 35% to 49%60%70% 50% to 74%80% 75% to 100%90%

17 Calculate the discount rate for each individual school School District average = weighted average of the schools Multiply E-Rate discount by total student population of the school to get weighted product Add all weighted products and divide by total students in school district Discounts are based on schools actually receiving services in the FRN (may not be all schools in the district) Calculating Your Discount

18 Calculating Your Discount – Individual School 18 Individual School uses straight Discount from Matrix

19 School District Discounts – the Weighted discount 19 Weighted Average of Individual School Discounts Note: NIFs use the weighted average discount of the schools they are serving

20 NIFs on the campus of single school/library and that serve only that entity, get the discount of that school/library (Separate entity number necessary only if located at a different physical address) NIFs that serve multiple schools/libraries, and without classrooms or public areas, get shared discount for the school district/library system NIFs that serve multiple schools and with classrooms use the snapshot method to get discount Snapshot method: Choose a specific day and determine the NSLP eligibility of the student population that is in class on that day DOCUMENT your process Non-Instructional Facilities (NIFs) Calculating Your Discount

21 Please refer to exercise Kim is showing Calculating Your Discount - Strategy

22 NSLP eligibility based on students family being at or below 185% of federal poverty levels Income Eligibility Guidelines (IEG) published annually by U.S. Department of Agriculture Other alternative discount methodologies seek to determine if a student meets the NSLP IEG threshold Alternative Discount Mechanisms

23 Programs that meet the IEG threshold for the NSLP: Medicaid Food stamps (SNAP) Supplementary Security Income (SSI) Section 8 Housing Assistance Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations Acceptable Mechanisms Alternative Discount Mechanisms Programs that do not meet the IEG threshold for the NSLP: –Temporary Aid to Needy Families (TANF) –Title 1 –Scholarship programs Unacceptable Mechanisms

24 If school can establish that one sibling in a family is eligible for NSLP, then it can count the other siblings in the same family as eligible for NSLP even if the other siblings do not participate. Sibling Match Alternative Discount Mechanisms

25 Must be sent to all families whose children attend the school Surveys must contain at least student and family name, size of family, income level of family or acceptable alternative mechanism Surveys are valid for two years NSLP application forms are never an acceptable survey instrument Surveys Alternative Discount Methods

26 Can conduct family survey even if your school participates in NSLP Must survey all families in the school If more than 50% of surveys are returned, survey is considered valid and results may be extrapolated for entire school Keep careful documentation Beneficial for both public and nonpublic schools seeking funding Use common sense when deciding whether to try to utilize the survey method Calculating Your Discount (Advanced) Use the survey method

27 If a survey is sent to all households of its students, and If at least 50% of surveys are returned School may extrapolate the data to 100% of its students Example: 100 families received the survey; 75 returned them 25 of the 75 families are eligible for NSLP 25/75 = 0.33 School can report 33% of all students are eligible Survey Extrapolation Alternative Discount Methods

28 Ensure that the same students are not double counted. Surveys cannot be combined with other alternative discount methods if you have extrapolated Provisions 1-4 cannot be combined with other alternative discount methods since they include extrapolation Keep detailed records to show that the same students were not double counted Combining Alternative Discount Methods Alternative Discount Methods

29 Feeder School Method Extrapolating from elementary to secondary schools Principals Survey/Estimate Based on administrators knowledge of some of their students Title I eligibility alone Neighborhood poverty measurements Unacceptable Alternative Discount Calculation Methods Alternative Discount Methods

30 Questions?

31 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation Eligible Services List (ESL)

32 FCC changed their rule regarding designation of service for Telecommunications and/or Internet Access (P1) to indicate that the applicant is only required to check one of the two boxes on Form 470 as long as the services requested are described in sufficient detail to allow prospective service providers. Updated forms for next year expected to indicate only a single category of service as Priority One. New for 2013/2014

33 Local, long distance, cellular phone service and paging Includes voice mail and custom calling features Centrex, hosted VOIP phone service Broadband services (WAN services) T-1, PRI, Frame Relay, ISDN, leased lit and dark fiber*, etc. Installation of eligible telecom services If installation is included on your application Most taxes and surcharges Telecommunications services must be provided by an Eligible Telecommunications Provider (ETP) Exception: Hosted VOIP and Fiber WAN services can be provided by non-ETP Telecommunications Services Priority One

34 Broadcast Blast messaging Monitoring services for 911, E911 or alarm telephone lines Services to ineligible locations End-user devices Cell phone, tablet computers Not Eligible as Telecom Services Priority One

35 Support for IA includes Internet Service Provider (ISP) fees as well as the conduit to the Internet Other eligible IA services include: service Wireless Internet access Interconnected VoIP Basic Web hosting Internet Access (IA) Priority One

36 Costs for Internet content Subscription services such as monthly charges for on-line magazine subscriptions Internet2 membership dues Web site creation fees Web based curriculum software Software, services or systems used to create or edit Internet content Not eligible as Internet Access Priority One

37 Interconnected VoIP (aka Hosted VoIP) Defined as a service that 1.Enables real-time, two-way voice communications. 2.Requires a broadband connection from the users location. 3.Requires Internet protocol-compatible customer premises equipment (CPE). 4.Permits users generally to receive calls that originate on the public switched telephone network and to terminate calls to the public switched telephone network. 37

38 Priority One Services May be applied for in either Telecommunications or Internet Access on Form 470. The Form 471 application category of service selection will be decided by the type of provider, whether ETC or not. Interconnected VoIP

39 Support for equipment and cabling on-site that transport information to classrooms or public rooms of a library Subject to the Two-in-Five RuleTwo-in-Five Entities can only receive funding every two out of five years Internal Connections Priority Two

40 Basic Eligibility Conditions Priority Two

41 Support for basic maintenance of eligible internal connections (BMIC) such as: Repair and upkeep of hardware Wire and cable maintenance Basic tech support Configuration Changes Agreements or contracts MUST state the eligible components covered, make, model and location Service must be delivered within the funding year July 1 – June 30 Two-in-Five Rule does not apply to BMIC Basic Maintenance of Internal Connections Priority Two

42 Standard manufacturer warranties of no more than three years remain eligible as long as it is provided as BUNDLED (included) with the purchase of the device. If there is a line item cost associated with the warranty, then the warranty is not eligible Support for BMIC for hardware is limited to actual work performed under the contract BMIC Updated Guidance Priority Two

43 Applicants may make estimates based on: Hours per year of maintenance History of needed repairs and upkeep Age of eligible internal connections Applicants using the factors listed above must submit a bona fide request It is not reasonable to estimate an amount that would cover the full cost of every piece of eligible equipment. BMIC Updated Guidance Priority Two

44 Flat rate contracts may be eligible however, applicants may only invoice for services actually delivered/work performed. Exceptions that will not require demonstration that work was performed are: Software upgrades and patches Bug fixes and security patches Online and telephone based technical support BMIC Updated Guidance Priority Two

45 A transfer may occur three years or more after the purchase of the equipment to other eligible entities No equipment transfer may occur prior to three years from the date of installation, unless the eligible entity is permanently or temporarily closing Equipment transfer rules Equipment Transfers

46 Notify USAC Both the closing entity and the recipient must retain records of the transaction Include the reason for the transfer Records must be kept for five years after the date of the transfer Records for equipment transferred after >3 years follow the traditional document retention requirements Equipment transfers less than 3 years Equipment Transfers

47 As of January 3, 2011, applicants can dispose of obsolete equipment, but no sooner than five years after the date the equipment is installed Resale for payment or other consideration is allowable no sooner than five years after the equipment is installed Resale or disposal is prohibited before the five years have passed. Disposal of Equipment Rules Disposal of Equipment

48 Trade-ins of equipment may be permitted if the E-rate funded equipment to be traded in has been installed for at least five years This limitation does not apply for equipment not funded through E-rate Value of trade-in does not have to be shared with USAC. Trade-ins and Exchanges

49 Questions?

50 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation Form 470

51 Form 470 – Starts Competitive Bidding Makes yourselves familiar with eligible services and various categories of service Service or Function MUST provide enough detail to encourage service providers to bid Broaden scope – plan for growth or reduction in number of eligible entities or bandwidth or number of lines Any limiting or disqualification factors related to bidding should be identified unless on RFP

52 Killer Gotchas = Funding DENIAL Did not identify the correct service category on Form 470 Mostly relates to P2 services now. Hint: Always indicate BMIC when asking for IC If you indicate that you dont have an RFP when you really do have one, and vice-versa

53 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation Competitive Bidding/ Procurement

54 Avoid conflicts of interests Independent Consultant vs. Service Provider Applicant vs. Service Provider Follow and UNDERSTAND the rules – FCC, State and local Board Policy Tennessee State Bidding rules and regulations Master Contracts Consortium Contracts Document the process!!! Fair and Open Competitive Bidding is a Program Requirement

55 Help prepare the Form 470 Help write or provide a RFP to applicant Be a contact person on Form 470 Sign any applicant forms Be involved with bid development or evaluation in any way Provide funding for the applicant's non-discount portion or waive the applicant's non-discount portion Coerce or pressure the applicant to use a specific service provider Provide gifts to applicants that violate the gift restrictions Service providers CANNOT: Competitive Bidding

56 Offer neutral technical assistance on development of technology plan Cannot exert undue influence on applicant's ability to conduct a fair and open competitive bidding Answer general questions about the products and services they sell in response to applicant inquiries Once a contract has been signed, provide information to applicants to assist with responding to USAC questions regarding their application/funding requests(s) Provide assistance with service substitutions and other post-commitment activities Service providers CAN: Competitive Bidding

57 Have a relationship with service providers that would unfairly influence the outcome of the competition Furnish service providers with inside competitive information Have ownership interest in a service providers company competing for services Violate gifting rules Applicants CANNOT: Competitive Bidding

58 Have pre-bidding discussions with potential bidders as long as that doesnt lead to one bidder having inside information Attend product demonstrations Encourage and seek vendors to bid Do research to determine what cost-effective solutions are available (in a service provider or manufacturer neutral manner) Applicants can: Competitive Bidding

59 FCC rules refer to RFPs generically but they may have a variety of names (Request for Quotes, Request for Bids) FCC rules do not require RFP but state and local procurement rules may Must be available to bidders for at least 28 days (we recommend 29 days) from the posting of whichever is released last, the RFP or the Form 470 Retain a copy of the RFP, including evidence of publication date and any solicitation MUST indicate any special requirements and/or disqualification factors FCC Form 470 & RFPs

60 Applicants must ensure that they post for the correct category or categories of service (Non- allowable M&C correction.) Does not apply for Priority One services for 2013 and beyond Sufficient detail in FCC Form 470 Cannot provide generic descriptions (e.g., All eligible telecom services or Digital Transmission Services) Cannot provide laundry lists of products and services Addendums or changes to the RFP may require applicants to re-start the 29 day period when there is a significant change to the original scope of the procurement FCC Form 470 & RFPs

61 Setting eligible services requirements Applicants may require service providers to provide services that are compatible with one kind of system over another (e.g., Cisco compatible). Applicants cannot state make and model on FCC Form 470 or RPF, but may state equivalent make & model (e.g., IBM router 628 or equal functionality) Imposing Restrictions FCC Form 470 & RFPs

62 Vendor selection criteria MUST be posted with the RFP Vendor evaluation begins after 29-day waiting period Follow your vendor selection criteria Price of the eligible goods and services must be the criteria given the highest allowable point value Other factors, including other price factors, can be considered as well but they cannot be weighted equally or higher than cost of the eligible goods and services Bid Evaluation Vendor Selection

63 FactorPoints Available Vendor 1Vendor 2Vendor 3 Price of the ELIGIBLE goods and services Prior experience w/ vendor20 0 Prices for ineligible services, products & Fees Flexible Invoicing: 472 or Environmental objectives Total Sample Bid Evaluation Matrix Competitive Bidding

64 Solution must be cost-effective An existing contract can be used as a bid response to your posted FCC Form 470 Post 470, evaluate all bids & existing contract, memorialize your decision if existing contract is selected – BE CAREFUL, A NEW CONTRACT MAY BE REQUIRED, EVEN FROM EXISTING VENDOR No bids or one bid ( yourself noting the fact ) Retain all vendor selection documentation Winning and losing bids, correspondences, memos, bid evaluation documents, etc. Selecting the Winning Bidder Vendor Selection

65 Must respond to all legitimate inquiries You do not have to respond to SPAM s or s that do not reference any specific service or product that youve requested Providers that feel they are being stonewalled may contact USAC for assistance Cost to transfer to another provider alone is not by itself a good enough reason to stay with incumbent Avoid appearances of a done deal Dont post for something you dont want If plans change, have a plan to communicate with potential bidders Avoid Sham Bidding

66 Cant use E-Rate to get free ineligible products and services Must deduct the value of the free stuff, discounts, trade-ins, etc., from the pre-discount amount in order get equal comparison between offerings Cost allocation is NOT required when the product/service (e.g., free cell phones) is available to the public or a class of subscribers (not just E-Rate) End user handsets and softphones are currently not eligible Be wary of vendors that try to bundle this equipment in their proposals – the FCC still hasnt ruled officially on this open item Cost of eligible goods and services cannot be inflated to cover the free ineligible products and services Free Services Vendor Selection

67 Must be signed AFTER at least 29 days have elapsed but BEFORE you file your Form 471 Must be signed and dated by applicant at a minimum READ AND UNDERSTAND THE FINE PRINT! Allow enough time to take contracts to Board for approval (if required by Board policy) Be prepared to explain documents that dont look like a traditional contract. Contracts 67

68 Questions?

69 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation Form 471

70 Form 471 – Your Application for Discounts Must be filed every funding year This is your actual request for funding This is where you specify…Who, What, Where, When, & How WHO: Service providers chosen WHAT: Services being requested WHERE: Service Delivery locations WHEN: Dates for services HOW: Costs for services and terms

71 Include ALL NIFS that will be receiving discounted services Separate Priority 1 and Priority 2 services on two different Forms 471 Separate Recurring from Non-Recurring charges Recurring – Block 5, Question C. Non-Recurring – Block 5, Question H. Contract expiration date for non-recurring services - September 30 (coincides with default deadline for delivery of services for non-recurring charges) Form 471 – Your Application for Discounts

72 Priority Two Filing Strategies Create multiple Block 4s to identify different groups of sites. Create multiple Forms 471 for widely varying discounts i.e. – one Form 471 for 80% and one for 90% Form 471 – Your Application for Funds

73 Potential Funding Deal Breakers DONT file Priority One and Priority Two funding requests on the same Form 471 DONT forget to wait at least 29 days after any mandatory processes associated with your competitive bidding before selecting a service provider or signing any contracts DONT submit your Form 471 BEFORE signing all related contracts DONT forget to CERTIFY your submitted application (whether electronic or paper certification)

74 Item 21 Attachment MUST be submitted by the end of the Form 471 filing window Avoid TMI (Too Much Information) Syndrome – PIA will thank you Remove ineligible costs – be careful 30% rule –30% or more of funding request dollar value cannot be for ineligible products and services. the entire request may be denied unless… it can be rectified during your PIA process: Remove it- Split it up- separate FRN If possible, work with service provider(s) to create your Item 21 attachment(s)

75 Questions?

76 Application Review & FCDL Be Responsive to PIA reviewer Answer all PIA reviewer questions Establish a working relationship with PIA reviewer Request additional time if you need it to respond When you do receive your FCDL, review it thoroughly You have 60 days from date of FCDL to submit an appeal if you do not agree with the funding decision(s).

77 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation Program Updates and Compliance

78 5 years from last date to receive service in electronic format or paper Any document from a prior year that supports current year must be kept for at least 5 years from last date to receive service E.g., Contract from 2005, used to support FY 2012 recurring service FRNs, must be kept until at least June 30, 2018 Applicants & service providers must retain ALL documentation that shows compliance with all FCC rules. Retain Documents to Show Compliance Document Retention

79 Consultant authorization such as Letter of Agency Document Examples, e.g.: Competitive Bidding Documents – include all bids winning and losing Compliance review documents (PIA, TPA, CIPA, Invoice) Invoices, bills, contracts Asset registries, inventory logs NSLP discount documentation (including NSLP applications, etc.) Technology plans in effect for each Funding Yr NOTE: See complete list on USAC website Retain Documents to Show Compliance Document Retention

80 2-in-5 Year Rule An entity may only receive discounts 2 out of every 5 years for internal connections Doesnt include basic maintenance Applies at the building level, not district level If central equipment is purchased for NOC, each building receiving benefit of that equipment receives a strike Plan accordingly to maximize discounts Strikes related to funding commitment (FCDL), not 471 or invoices Can cancel FRN to get strike (year) back, but not after funding has been disbursed Hint: Dont use a strike (year) for a $500 piece of equipment

81 Will P2 Be Available in FY 2013? Lets look at FY 2012 $2,290,683,250 available Demand for Priority 1 (telecom and Internet) was $2.444 billion an increase of 12.5% from last year Demand for Priority 2 (internal connections) at 90% discount level was $1.379 billion All P1 and 90% P2 funded with unprecedented rollover If P1 grows again by 12.5%, P1 demand will be $2.737 billion Very little rollover funds remain No certainty as to the availability of P2 funding in 2013

82 Should You Apply for P2 Funding? Year 1 -- funded to 70% Year 2 – all funded Year 3 – down to 82% Year 4 – down to 87% Year 5 – down to 81% Year 6 – down to 70% Year 7 – down to 81% Year 8 – down to 80% Year 9 – down to 86% Year 10 – down to 81% Year 11 – down to 87% FY 2009 – down to 77% FY all funded FY2011 – down to 88% FY 2012 – down to 90% (barely)

83 Funding Predictions for FY 2013 P1: Enough funding should be available to fund all P1 requests P2: It is doubtful that all 90% P2 requests will be funded, at least not without pro-ration FY 2014? Will enough funding be available to pay for Priority 1 requests without proration?

84 What is Proration? The rules of the E-Rate program have provisions to pro-rate funding approval in the event there is not enough money to fund all of the valid requests This is already being done in the P2 category when the FCC cuts off funding at a certain discount level when there is not enough money to fund an entire discount band Proration in this context means that it is likely there will not be enough money to fund even all of the 90% requests The FCC will authorize USAC to fund a commensurate portion of each of the requests For example, if 40% of funding is available to fund all of the 90% requests, then applicants will be approved for 40% of their entire funding request $10, requested = $4, funded

85 What is Proration? The more concerning/alarming possibility is a proration of P1 requests Based on the rules, if there is not enough money available to fund even all of the P1 requests, then the FCC will use same model as has been used for P2 threshold determination and will apply that theory to P1 Long story short…without swift and substantive change to the program (either by cap increase or other administrative adjustments), applicants in the lower discounts bands (<50% weighted discount) may see zero E-Rate funding

86 How Will This Problem Get Fixed? FCC currently wrestling with this issue Possible solutions could include: INCREASING THE CAP Removing certain services from the eligible services list Consider what this would mean if voice services were no longer eligible Adjusting the discount matrix to decrease each discount level by 5 or 10% Find other funding sources to add to E-rate Requiring ISPs and IC vendors to pay into fund Assessing contributions differently

87 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation Childrens Internet Protection Act (CIPA)

88 SCHOOLS – By July 1, 2012, you should have amended your existing Internet safety policy to provide for the education of minors about appropriate online behavior, including interacting with other individuals on social networking sites and in chat rooms, and cyberbullying awareness and response. Overall - several existing statutory requirements were codified and others have been clarified. New requirements under CIPA New for Funding Year 2012

89 New requirements come from the Protecting Children in the 21 st Century Act, which updated the Childrens Internet Protection Act. Internet safety policies for schools must have been updated on or before July 1, 2012 to provide for: The education of minors about appropriate online behavior, including interacting with other individuals on social networking sites and in chat rooms Cyberbullying awareness and response Additional Information on New Requirements CIPA - FCC Report and Order

90 Social networking and cyberbullying are not defined, nor are specific procedures or curricula detailed for schools to use in educating students Congress intent is that local authorities should make decisions in this area. FCC recently issued some clarifying guidance regarding what the expectations are as to how often students should be educated and some loose guidelines regarding documenting proof of the education Resources are available to assist in this process if needed – e.g., OnGuard, FBI and the Google project (see TN E-Rate website for specific URL information) Additional Information on New Requirements CIPA - FCC Report and Order

91 15 Day Rule eliminated (CORRECTIONS ONLY) RNL & RAL corrections can be submitted until the FCDL is issued PIA will ask if this is a ministerial or clerical error Tell us what error occurred Provide a reasonable explanation Documentation may be requested Corrections of Ministerial & Clerical Errors More user friendly processes

92 Using wrong Form 470 number or wrong billed entity number Using wrong name or service provider identification number (SPIN) Using wrong expiration date for a contract Requesting recurring service when the service is one time charge Requesting one time service when the service is recurring Inaccurately reporting the pre-discount amount on Block 5 Leaving off a building from Block 4 Referring to wrong Block 4 worksheet for a funding request Listing wrong service category in Block 5 Simple math errors Failing to enter an item from the source list (e.g., NSLP data, uploading Block 4 data, FRN, etc.) Ministerial/Clerical Errors Some allowable corrections

93 Starting with FY 2011 FRNs, Operational SPIN change requests can be approved when there is a legitimate reason to change providers (e.g., breach of contract or the service provider is unable to perform) Operational SPIN changes will not be approved: to purchase a service or product for a cheaper price or because of preference for a bidder that didnt participate in or win the competitive bidding process Operational SPIN Changes New starting in 2011

94 Operational SPIN Change Request The newly selected vendor must receive the next highest point value in the original bid evaluation if more than one vendor submitted a bid You can select a vendor without conducting another competitive bid if only one bid was received You must state your reason for the request Indicate the new SPIN start date and funding amount and the former SPIN end date and funding amount Operational SPIN Changes (contd) New for Funding Year 2011

95 Gifts E-rate Gift Rules

96 Solicitation or receipt of gifts by applicants from service providers and potential service providers and vice versa is a competitive bidding violation. Rules apply to everyone participating in the E-rate whether public or private, and whether operating at the local, state or federal level. Must always follow FCC rules. May also need to comply with additional state/local requirements. If those provisions are more stringent than federal requirements, failure to comply with them will be a violation of FCC rules. Gift Rules E-rate Gift Rules

97 Gift prohibitions are applicable year-round, not just during the competitive bidding process Prohibition including soliciting and receiving any gift or thing of value from an applicant or a service provider participating in, or seeking to participate in the E-rate. Service providers may not offer or provide any gifts to applicant personnel involved in the E- rate or vice versa. Gift Prohibitions E-rate Gift Rules

98 Modest refreshments not offered as part of a meal, items with little intrinsic value intended for presentation, and items worth $20 or less, including meals, may be offered or provided, and accepted by any individuals or entities subject to this rule, if the value of these items received by any individual does not exceed $50 from one service provider per funding year. See 47 C.F.R. § (d)(1). Single source = all employees, officers, representatives, agents, contractors, or directors of the service provider. Gift Rule Exceptions E-rate Gift Rules

99 A Service Provider has offered a school district employee lunch at a local sandwich shop three times during the course of the year. The value of the school district employees meal is $9 each time. The total value of the gifts is $27. No other gifts are received by this employee from this provider. The meals fall in the $20 per instance and $50 per annum exception and there is no rule violation. Gift Rule Exceptions Examples E-rate Gift Rules

100 A school system employee and his spouse are invited by a service provider to attend a play, tickets to which have a face value of $30 each. The aggregate market value of the gifts offered on this single occasion is $60, $40 more than the $20 amounts that may be accepted for a single event or presentation. The employee may not accept the gift of the evening of entertainment. He and his spouse may attend the play only if he pays the full $60 value of the two tickets. For more details/examples: raining/Applicant-6th-Order.ppt raining/Applicant-6th-Order.ppt Gift Rule Exceptions Examples E-rate Gift Rules

101 Gifts to family and friends when those gifts are made using personal funds of the donor (without reimbursement from the employer) and are not related to a business transaction or business relationship are exempt. See 47 C.F.R. § (d)(3). Gift Rule Exceptions E-rate Gift Rules

102 Return any tangible item to the donor, or pay the donor its market value, or, if perishable, the item may be given to an appropriate charity or shared within the office or destroyed. See CFR (a). To avoid public embarrassment to the seminar sponsor and E-rate service provider, the Superintendent did not decline a barometer worth $200 given at the conclusion of her speech on the districts education initiatives. The Superintendent must either return the barometer or promptly reimburse the provider $200 to cure the violation. Curing Violations E-rate Gift Rules

103 With approval from the recipients supervisor, a floral arrangement sent by a service provider may be placed in the offices reception area. A district employee wishes to attend a charitable event to which he has been offered a $300 ticket by a service provider. Although his attendance is not in the interest of the district, he may attend if he promptly reimburses the donor the $300 face value of the ticket. Curing Violations Examples E-rate Gift Rules

104 Gift rules are not intended to discourage charitable donations as long as the donations: Are not directly or indirectly related to E-rate procurement activities or decisions, and Are not given with the intention of circumventing competitive bidding or other FCC rules Charitable Contributions Charitable Donations

105 Paid-for-exchange services at market rates, such as the purchase of advertising space, is neither a gift nor a charitable donation as long as it is not intended to influence the competitive bidding process. For example, service providers purchasing advertising space on the high school football score board, for which they pay market rates, would not cause any violations. Allowable Charitable Contributions Charitable Donations

106 Equipment, including laptops and cell phones, may be permissible if it benefits the school or library as a whole and broadly serves an educational purpose. Gifts of equipment that increase demand for a donors services, and thus cause the applicant to purchase more of a providers services, are prohibited. Example: Service provider donates computers, causing a need for more Internet Access, which the provider sells to the library Captain Obvious Note: Free computers are not ever allowed as part of an E-Rate procurement Questionable Charitable Contributions Charitable Donations

107 Cash, equipment, including sporting, musical or playground equipment, may be permissible if they benefit the school or library as a whole and broadly serve an educational purpose. For example, a donation of books for a literacy campaign, given to a school by an E- rate service provider, would be acceptable donation that benefits the school and broadly serves an educational purpose. Potentially Allowable Charitable Contributions Charitable Donations

108 Service providers cannot offer special equipment discounts or equipment with service arrangements to E-rate recipients that are not currently available to some other class of subscribers or segment of the public. Free phone/tablet with purchase of service contract must be available to non-E-rate customers as well Donations to cover the applicants non- discount share Unallowable Charitable Contributions Charitable Donations

109 Equipment for a specific individual or group of individuals associated with or employed by an E-rate participant. Service provider may not give a gift to a teacher who helps draft a districts technology plan, even if that teacher does not ultimately help select the E-rate service provider. Unallowable Charitable Contributions Charitable Donations

110 Widely attended events are exempt from gift rules. See 5 C.F.R. § (g) Gathering is widely attended if: Employees attendance must be in the interest of the agency (i.e. school or library) and further its programs and operations, and It is expected that a large number of persons will attend, and Persons with a diversity of views or interests will be present. Event is open to members from throughout the interested industry or professional or those in attendance represent a range of persons interested in a given matter. Widely Attended Events Conferences and Training Sessions

111 Food, refreshments, instruction and documents given to all attendees at Widely Attended Events are permissible. Trainings offered by state, regional or local government bodies or non-profits or trade associations that include those bodies are not considered vendor promotional training Vendor promotional training means training provided by any person for the purpose of promoting its products or services. See 5 C.F.R. § (g) Conferences – Permissible Actions Conferences and Training Sessions

112 Service providers can host, sponsor, or conduct E- rate training, as long as they do not provide any gift that exceeds the gift exceptions Service providers cannot provide demonstrations or help with preparation or completion of forms, or determining the services listed on the Form 470 and/or RFP. Conferences – Permissible Actions Conferences and Training Sessions

113 Service providers can offer an educational discount on the attendance fee to a Widely Attended Event as long as it is available to all employees of schools and libraries. Applicants cannot accept free attendance, paid by a service provider, even if the school or library has assigned the employee to attend the event. A Service provider cannot pay for or reimburse expenses for an applicant to speak at a conference on behalf of that service provider, or in any other setting, e.g. newspaper or magazine. Conferences – Registration Fees Conferences and Training Sessions

114 Questions?

115 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation Post-Commitment Processes

116 Form 486 Receipt of Services Confirmation

117 Form 486 Review Notifies USAC that services started or are scheduled to start and invoices can be paid Applicant makes additional program certifications Filed AFTER receipt of FCDL Form 486 must be filed online or postmarked, no later than 120 days after Service Start Date OR 120 days after FCDL date Whichever is later Due to Super Storm Sandy, 2012 Form 486s associated with Waves 1-17 are due no later than Jan 28, 2013 No word yet on prior years pending Forms 486 deadlines

118 Process after the Process… i.e. GET YOUR MONEY!

119 WHEN will I get $$? E-rate is a discount program Funding is based on a discount on actual costs incurred not on total funded amount District must experience costs before disbursements of funding are made FCDL Date Can be months to over a year after the start of the E-rate/fiscal year – Plan for it! Form 486 Must be filed before any disbursements can be made Invoice Deadline October 28 after close of funding year for recurring services January 28 after close of funding year for non-recurring services Invoice Deadline Extensions are available

120 HOW will I get it? Its a long and complicated journey… $$ always flows through the service provider – never directly to applicant FCDL -> Form 486 -> Carrier Forms -> SPI or BEAR -> Invoice Reconciliation Carrier Forms, including: Grids, certifications, and data gathering forms MUST be filed before the service providers will process discounts TIP: Get to know the SPIN contact

121 SPI or BEAR? SPI (Service Provider Invoice) Form 474 Service provider invoices USAC directly for E-rate discounted amount Applicant pays its share after discount (in a perfect world) Complications: timing of FCDL and posting of discounts, verification of receipt of discounts BEAR (Billed Entity Application Reimbursement) Form 472 Prepared by applicant – applicant is responsible for calculations Full costs incurred by applicant E-rate funds disbursed in a check (check issued by SP) HOW will I get it? (Contd)

122 After FCDL issued by SLD After Applicant has submitted Form 486 After Applicant has submitted Service Provider required paperwork After Service provider has processed paperwork THEN: If E-rate discounts are credits on the bill, it may take 2-3 bill cycles for those credits to actually be realized If BEAR is filed, applicants will receive a check from Service Provider approximately four – six weeks from the time it is submitted. WHEN will I get it? (Contd)

123 DID I get it???!!! BEAR Method Check received by district = full closure Make sure to retain documentation on how BEAR calculations were made SPI Method Requires alert and methodical accounting Reconciliation of bills required in order to verify if discounts are received Discounts often overlap funding years – its a TRUE challenge! Do not assume that SP calculations are correct!

124 Deadlines/Extensions Invoice Deadline Extension Must be filed in order to collect funds after invoice deadline has passed (October 28) Implementation Deadline Extension (a.k.a. Service Delivery Deadline) Must be filed if non-recurring services will be installed after September 30 deadline If a service delivery extension occurs, your contract may need to be extended (HINT: Set contracts for non-recurring services to expire September 30) Applicants must extend the contract AND file a Form 500 to extend the contract expiration date in USACs records before an invoice dated after that date can be paid

125 Deadlines/Extensions Due to Super Storm Sandy, the invoice deadlines for ALL 2011/2012 recurring services has been extended until January 28, If you havent submitted your BEARs or if youre not sure that you have received everything youre entitled to, you now have a special extra window of time to check and double check.

126 An Invoice Deadline Extension request must be submitted to USAC There is no official form, but there is a format & criteria for request(s) Typically, request is submitted by applicant to USAC. See your binder for specific instructions or consult USACs website OR call the TennSEC office with questions What if the Invoice deadline was missed? Invoice Deadline

127 Questions?

128 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation Form 500

129 To request one or more of the following changes to a Funding Request Number (FRN) to: Change service start date on the FRN; Change contract expiration date on the FRN; Reduce funding amount on the FRN; Cancel the FRN NOTE: Once you submit a Form 500 to reduce or cancel the funding amount, it is irreversible. Form 500

130 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation Service Substitutions

131 Substitution of a service or product must meet the following conditions: Substituted services or products have same functionality as services or products contained in original proposal. Substitution does not violate any contract provisions or state or local procurement laws. Substitution does not result in an increase in percentage of ineligible services or functions. Requested change is within the scope of controlling FCC Form 470, including any Requests for Proposal, for the original service. For details: corrections/service-substitutions/ corrections/service-substitutions/ To request change in products and/or services specified in Form 471 Service Substitutions

132 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation SPIN Changes

133 Pre-commitment SPIN changes: Corrective SPIN changes only (i.e., data entry errors). Post-commitment SPIN changes: ( as referenced previously in this presentation) 6 th Report & Order restricted Operational SPIN changes as follows: Operational SPIN changes must have legitimate reason to change, such as breach of contract or provider unable to perform, and must select provider with the next highest point value in evaluation. For more details: corrections/spin-change-guidance.aspx corrections/spin-change-guidance.aspx SPIN changes: Operational vs. Corrective SPIN Changes

134 Intermediate/Advanced Presentation Audits

135 Primary purposes of audits: to ensure compliance with FCC rules and program requirements and to assist in prevention and detection of waste, fraud, & abuse If you cannot prove that you followed the rules, then it will be assumed that you DID NOT follow the rules. The consequences of negative findings by an auditor can mean payback by the School/District/Library of E-rate monies… or something else. Purpose of E-rate audits Audits

136 E-rate audits will vary, e.g., BCAP, PQA, etc. The best way to prepare for an audit is to: Know and follow the program rules DOCUMENT EVERYTHING and SAVE DOCUMENTATION IN ORGANIZED WAY You cant prove that the School, District, and/or Library abided by the rules if you dont document your processes and retain supporting documents. Organize your supporting documentation so that ….auditors and/or your successor(s)… can trace what you did to demonstrate that you followed all E-rate program rules. EXPECT TO BE AUDITED…at some point Audits

137 1.Plan ahead for an audit or review by documenting every step of the process as the work is done. e.g., document how you conducted competitive bidding; save copies of any RFPs issued in conjunction with any Form 470s, save copies of your bid evaluation matrix and scoring of bidders, etc. 2.Create and maintain ORGANIZED E-Rate binders for EACH funding year Retain – Retain – Retain – Lessen your pain!! Retain ALL E-rate related documents Contact service providers for assistance when appropriate PREPARING FOR AUDITS Audits

138 H.A.T.S Visits Helping Applicants To Succeed Primarily for applicants that have had funding issues in the past Welcome the help…do not be afraid Special Compliance Reviews Typically during PIA Item 25 Selective Review Cost Effectiveness Review CIPA Compliance and Competitive Bidding Selective Reviews Other Levels of Scrutiny Audits

139 Keep for 5 years after last date of service Be aware of contract dates and extensions All USAC correspondence, including Quarterly Disbursement Reports Make sure all departments understand document retention requirements for E-Rate E.g., food services data, surveys, etc., in support of NSLP participation Align Board policies with E-rate requirements Per 5 th Report and Order: if applicant cant prove compliance with rules through documentation, they must assume that you didnt follow the rules No documentation = Recovery of Funds (Applicant may have to pay back USAC for E-rate monies they already received) Document Retention Requirements Always Be Prepared for Audits

140 Contact Information SLD Client Service Bureau (CSB) E-rate Help Desk where applicant & service providers can get answers to questions Call Submit a Question on SLD website TN E-rate Coordinators Office or (855) 45-ERATE ( )

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