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INFORMATIONAL LETTER NO.:   79

POLICY CODE: IJNDB

  

TO:                   Superintendents of Schools and Technology Coordinators

FROM:             Susan A. Gendron, Commissioner

DATE:               January 14, 2005

RE:                   ATM Service and E-Rate, School Year 2005-2006

The following is TIME SENSITIVE material that must be immediately forwarded to the individual responsible for filing for Federal E-Rate services.

School systems initially purchasing, continuing to purchase or that are interested in pursuing distance learning (ATM) service during school year 2005-2006 must apply for Federal E-Rate discounts during the current application cycle if they wish to receive E-Rate discounts for the 2005-2006 school year.   Those doing the actual filing of ATM E-Rate applications should be aware of the following required steps:

Procedure for obtaining E-Rate discount for monthly ATM line fees:

  A.   Form 470, to be sent to the Schools and Libraries Division, Universal Service Administrative Company (formally SLC).

The Maine Department of Education has already submitted an E-Rate form 470 on behalf of ALL eligible schools, libraries, vocational centers and regions.

B.   Verizon Contract, Each individual site must have signed service contract with Verizon before Form 471 (see below) is submitted.

 The State has a master contract with Verizon to provide ATM service to any eligible school, library, vocational center or region in Maine, BUT each site must have an individual contract for service.   To obtain an individual contract with Verizon, call Bill Staszko at (878-4226) or toll free at (800-244-3250).   Remember that your site will be the billed entity for this service, NOT the Department of Education.   This means that you must use you own entity number when you file the 471.

C.   Form 471, to be sent to the Schools and Libraries Division, Universal Service Administrative Company at SLD-Form 471, P.O. Box 7026, Lawrence, Kansas 66044-7026 and be postmarked by midnight on February 17 th, 2005.

Once each site has a signed a contract for ATM service with Verizon, they must then submit a Form 471.   A template for Form 471 can be found at:   http://www.mainedistancelearningproject.org

Form 471, and all associated materials, must be sent to the Schools and Libraries Division, Universal Administrative Company, and be postmarked by midnight on February 17 th, 2005.

Follow the instructions for Block 4-A of the 471 carefully to determine which discount applies to your application.   If the ATM lines service applies to only one site(i.e., it is not used to transport data to other buildings within a school system) use the school’s specific discount rate.   If the ATM line service applies to more than one site (i.e., it provides data to more than one building) the aggregate discount arrived at in Block 4-A will be the discount used.   Sample applications can be found at:   http://www.mainedistancelearningproject.org

How to submit form 471 to the Schools and Libraries Division, Universal Service Administrative Company - Forms may be either printed and completed manually for mailing (address on the forms) or filed electronically through the following URL: http://www.maine.gov/msl/erate/erate.htm.   The forms are also available via mail by calling the Client Service Bureau at (1-888-203-8100).   For additional E-Rate support, please contact Lev Sherman, Sylvia Norton or Edna Comstock (1-800-322-8899) at the Maine State Library.

Procedure for obtaining PUC reimbursement to offset ATM line fees:

A.   Distance Learning (ATM) sites should be aware that they are entitled to additional monies as part of the State E-Rate program.   To receive these funds, please complete the template found below and return to phil.lindley@maine.gov.   For additional information concerning this reimbursement please contact Phil Lindley at the Maine Public Utilities Commission at 287-1598.

Sites looking for further information concerning the status of the Distance Learning (ATM) Network are encouraged to log-on to the project web site located at: http://www.mainedistancelearningproject.org or to contact Steve Vose at the Department of Education at 624-6779, or via e-mail at steve.vose@maine.gov