Important - Please Read if Using PEPPM for FY2013 Priority 2 E-rate Requests:
If you are unfamiliar with the State PEPPM Contract, please begin reading below where it says 'PEPPM Background.' If you are familiar with the PEPPM contract, please read the next five items are they are very important in terms of using the PEPPM Contract for FY 2013 Priority 2 E-rate funding requests.
1) The FCC's Queen of Peace decision requires that, beginning with FY 2013, applicants must list "or equivalent" language on the Form 470s for Priority 2 services and equipment. For example, you cannot say, "HP 2510 Switch," but you are permitted to say, "HP 2510 Switch or equivalent." Because the PEPPM contracts are bid by manufacturer, the FCC has said that they likely would not meet the Queen of Peace requirement moving forward. However, because the current PEPPM contract was competitively bid prior to FY 2013, we believe it is grandfathered and is therefore eligible for E-rate funding for FY 2013.
2) The current PEPPM contract was due to expire December 31, 2013, but in order to allow PA schools and libraries to file a single funding request for the full FY 2013 E-rate funding year and to be compliant with the new Queen of Peace decision, PEPPM contacted all of the vendors that were cited on any Form 471 for funding years 2011 or 2012 and asked if they wished to exercise the contract extension provision included in their contract. Of those, 38 product lines responded affirmatively and have had their contracts extended through December 31, 2014.
This spreadsheet shows those 38 product lines, the awarded vendors, the Form 470 #, the contract signing date and the contract expiration date. This is the information that you should include on your Form 471 for FY 2013. All other product lines expire December 31, 2013 and thus if you decide to select a product line that is not on the attached spreadsheet, E-rate purchases for those products must be made by December 31, 2013. Please note: the awarded vendor's SPIN number is listed; however, some vendors allow products to be purchased via their resellers which will have their own SPINs.
3) Availability of P2 funding for FY 2013: Because of the rapid rise in demand for Priority 1 funding, each year there has been less and less funding available for Priority 2 requests. In FY 2011, funding was only available for 88-90% requests; in FY 2012, funding was only available for 90% requests -- and this funding was only available due to the rollover of significant unused funding from prior years. If Priority 1 requests rise again, I would be surprised if funding was available at much below 90% for FY 2013 (if any is available at all). BUT... sometimes E-rate is impossible to predict and for this reason, I encourage you to continue to request funding for Priority 2 needs. It's like the lottery... you can't win it if you don't have a ticket. So apply, but please do so with small expectations.
4) If you choose to use the PEPPM contract, you must have a written vendor quote in place before you file the Form 471 (you can't just take pricing from the PEPPM list). Vendor ordering instructions and price lists are available at: http://www.peppm.org/pa/Product.htm.
5) As with any year, you are not required to use the PEPPM contract and may post your own Form 470. If you do, please remember that: 1) you should post your Form 470 ASAP, 2) you must use the term "or equivalent" if you list a certain manufacturer's name in the description, 2) you must have your own signed contract with the vendor prior to submitting the Form 471, and 3) you will use your own 470# and contract signing/expiration dates on the Form 471.
Below is general information about PEPPM for those who may not be familiar with this contract. The attached spreadsheet is what you should use for your FY 2013 Form 471, Block 5. If you have any questions about these changes, please don't hesitate to contact me at email@example.com.
The only way an E-rate applicant can submit a Form 471 without first competitively bidding the E-rate eligible service/item using a Form 470 is when another entity submits the 470 on the applicant’s behalf. Such is the situation with the state's PEPPM contract for internal connections and maintenance (www.peppm.org/pa/default.htm). The PA Department of Education files Form 470s to align the E-rate competitive bidding process with the official procurement process for the PEPPM contracts.
Schools (both public and nonpublic) and libraries that would like to purchase and take receipt of an E-rate eligible item from PEPPM on or after July 1, 2013 may simply file one form, the Form 471. The Form 471 filing window is currently open and Form 471 applications may be submitted now. The final day that applications can be postmarked or submitted and certified online and Item 21 attachments submitted for Funding Year 2013 is March 14, 2013.
In the cases where PEPPM is being used, the SLD does not require a separate contract to be issued before the 471 is filed because the PEPPM contract IS the contract. However, E-rate rules do you require you to obtain a quote on vendor letterhead prior to submitting the Form 471.
Purchase Orders for PEPPM Purchases
If your purchase is contingent on E-rate funding, a purchase order should be faxed AFTER your funding commitment decision has been made by the SLD, or after July 1, 2013, whichever is later. If you would like to purchase equipment regardless of E-rate approval, you should submit your purchase order to PEPPM any time after July 1, 2013. When your E-rate approval is received later, you can then simply seek reimbursement using a BEAR form.
The purchase order should be for the full amount of the equipment, not for the E-rate non-discounted amount. Further, the P.O. should clearly state that this is an E-rate item, and include the Funding Request Number (FRN) pertaining to that piece of equipment. In addition, if the P.O. is issued after a funding commitment decision is issued by the SLD, the P.O. should specifically state whether you would like to receive a discounted invoice (where you would just pay the non-discounted portion and the vendor would seek reimbursement from the SLD).
Using PEPPM After Posting Your Own 470:
If you posted your own 470 for equipment and are purchasing that equipment from PEPPM, you must have a binding contract before submitting the 471 (this can be a PO signed by the District and the vendor, listing that it will not be effective until at least July 1, 2013) or it can be a memo signed by both parties, listing the equipment, quantities, prices, and effective dates. Essentially, the SLD believes that if you post your own 470, you are taking the PEPPM contract price as one of the bids, which is different than relying on the PEPPM contract entirely. Please note: Although the DGS Co-Stars Contract is not E-rate eligible, if you post your own 470, you can consider the Co-Stars contract as a bid response and if selected, you must then have a contract signed before the Form 471 is submitted.
Applicants should complete the Form 471 online (www.sl.universalservice.org/menu.asp) using the “Create Form 471” option. Assistance with filing the Form 471 for PEPPM 2013 items will be provided by Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit staff by calling (570) 523-1155 ext. 2144.