The last step of the Schools and Libraries (E-rate) Program application process is to invoice USAC for your discounted share of your bill. You can submit an invoice to the E-rate Program only after:
- You received a positive funding amount on your funding commitment decision letter (FCDL),
- Your services have started/been delivered,
- You’ve submitted FCC Form 486 and received a notification in response,
- You’ve paid for the services, and
- Your service provider has filed its annual certification form.
We mentioned in Post #58 that you should tell your service provider which invoicing method to use. The two options available are:
One of the certifications you make as part of FCC Form 486 is that you meet the requirements of the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) as a condition of receiving E-rate funding for Internet access and Internet-related services.
What is CIPA?
As mentioned in the last two posts, CIPA stands for the Children’s Internet Protection Act. This is a law that was established in 2000 and helps to protect minors from obscene content and abuse on the Internet, among other things. To receive E-rate funding for Category One Internet access and all Category Two services, you must certify that your institution is in compliance with this law.
As we said in the last post, FCC Form 486 is the “receipt for service confirmation and CIPA and technology plan certification form;” it notifies USAC that your services have started or been delivered, and that you agree to follow program rules.
Today, we’ll talk about how to file the form online, and the certifications you agree to by completing the form.
After you receive the funding commitment decision letter and start your E-rate Program supported services, use the FCC Form 486 to inform USAC that they’ve started.
Some applicants mistakenly think the application process is over once they get their Funding Commitment Decision Letter (FCDL). It’s not! You still have a few steps left before you receive your funding.
After you get your FCDL, you still have to:
- Make changes and corrections (if needed),
- Submit the FCC Form 486 to confirm that services started and to report your Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) compliance status (as applicable), and
- Invoice USAC to receive your funding.