WTA Comments on Proposals to Facilitate Tribal Library Participation in the E-Rate Program

Today, WTA responded to the FCC’s NPRM on making it easier for Tribal libraries to participate in the FCC’s E-Rate program.  WTA recommends: (1) the simplification of E-Rate applications and processes to include only absolutely necessary information; (2) an increase in the dollar amount of category two equipment that can be purchased by Tribal and other rural E-Rate recipients without going through a competitive bidding process, or the elimination of the competitive bidding requirements altogether in such areas; (3) the reduction and simplification of requirements for the allocation of E-Rate-related costs in Tribal multiple-use buildings; (4) the increase of the maximum category two discount rate to 90 percent in Tribal and other high-cost rural areas, and; (5) the eligibility for E-Rate support of Tribal college libraries that also serve the local Tribal community as a public library. WTA also supports the proposal to add a Tribal community representative to the USAC Board of Directors.