Welcome to the E-Rate page!

NCLS E-rate Contacts:   Jerry Schell

USAC Client Service Bureau: 1-888-203-8100 (M-F, 8:00 AM - 8:00 PM Eastern Time)


E-rate - What Should I Be Doing? - added 4/4/2016, updated 4/24/2017

Filing Form 472 (BEAR) for FY2015 - added 9/27/16

Filing Form 486 - added 9/1/2016

Filing Form 471 - added 3/25/2016

Filing Form 470 - revised 1/20/16

471 Acknowledgement/Inquiry/Modification - added 5/2/2016

Adding NCLS as a Consultant - added 3/30/2016

Preparing the Phone Bill - added 3/25/2016

Updating Organization and Connectivity Profile- added 3/3/2016

Library Latitude/Longitude/Locale Code Info - added 3/4/2016


1.  All forms must be filed in the new E-Rate Productivity Center portal, known as EPC.  The portal web address is https://portal.usac.org/suite/

EPC accounts have been created for libraries that have previously filed for discounts.   To activate your account, follow the instructions for "Accessing the System for the First Time" on pages 1-2 of this document:  http://www.usac.org/_res/documents/sl/pdf/e-rate-productivity-center/EPC-Applicant-Guide-Getting-Started.pdf

The username for EPC is the email address used on the last Form 471 that was filed - it should be the library's generic email address.

If you are planning to file for E-rate discounts for the first time, please contact Jerry for assistance with getting the EPC account created for your library.

2.  Starting 7/1/16, all BEAR Form 472's must be filed online, and all payments will be made directly to applicants, not service providers.   This means that each applicant must provide banking and contact information to the FCC.    I have created a checklist of items that must be completed before a BEAR Form 472 can be filed - I recommend reviewing this checklist as soon as possible, and completing it well ahead of 7/1/16.   Please contact Jerry with any questions.

BEAR Form Pre-Requisite Checklist


EPC Training Videos   http://www.usac.org/sl/about/outreach/online-learning.aspx

USAC Schools and Libraries Web Site:   http://www.usac.org/sl

NY's E-rate consultant Web Site    http://www.e-ratecentral.com

E-rate Timeline

Letter of Agency Template

CIPA Policy Primer

CIPA Policy Checklist

Sample CIPA Policy

Form 479



         Your Library should not consider changing service providers without talking to NCLS first so that you are aware of its ramifications. There is paperwork involved in any change, and there are also service providers out there who do not participate in E-RATE.  It will be disappointing if the change nets a 20% savings but a loss of 70% in E-RATE reimbursements.

·         You certify that you will retain required documents for a period of at least ten years, which includes copies of all phone bills.  Do not just assume that the treasurer is keeping these.  You are acknowledging that you may be audited and you are certifying that in the event of an audit, you will make these records available to the Administrator.

·         Keep copies of all correspondence including emails from the PIA (Program Integrity Assurance) Do not ignore any bids from other Service Providers received during the bidding process between the filing of your 470 in November or December and the filing of your 471 in January and February.  Every bid must be addressed. Call NCLS for assistance.

·         Just because some of you pay the town or village for your phone service, under no circumstances does the reimbursement check go to them. This must be deposited into your account and you may be called upon to show how you used it. The library must be paying for phone service.