News Story

FCC approves FY2021 Eligible Services List

Monday, November 30, 2020 12:00 AM

The FCC approved the FY2021 Eligible Services List (ESL) on 11/30/2020.

The FCC waived the requirement that the ESL be released at least 60 days prior to the opening of the application filing window "to ensure that the application filing window opens with enough time to allow USAC to process and applicants to submit applications for funding year 2021."

There are only 2 changes made between FY2020 and FY2021 ESL's as detailed in the FCC release as follows:

1. First, we add a note under the “Eligibility Explanations for Certain Category One and Category Two Services” section to reflect the Commission’s prohibition on the use of E-Rate funds to purchase or obtain any equipment or services produced or provided by a covered company posing a national security threat to the integrity of communications networks or the communications supply chain.

2. Second, we add language to the eligible services list to reflect the Commission’s decision in the 2019 Category Two Report and Order to move from entity-level budgets to school district-wide and library system-wide budgets, effective in funding year 2021.

The FCC also explained that they declined several requests to make off-campus use of E-Rate funded services and equipment eligible. "Consistent with section 254 of the Telecommunications Act directive that E-Rate support may only be used to 'enhance... access to advanced telecommunications and information services for... school classrooms,' we remind applicants that off-campus use of eligible services, even if used for an educational purpose, is generally ineligible for support. Further, the eligible services list process 'is limited to determining what services are eligible under the Commission’s current rules and is generally not intended to be a vehicle for changing any eligibility rules'. Accordingly, we decline to address comments requesting that we add new services to the eligible services list."

For details see: https://ecfsapi.fcc.gov/file/113056785587/DA-20-1418A1.pdf