On this page of the MiCTA Web Site both Schools and Libraries (E-Rate) and Health Care Connect Fund (HCF) eligible members will be provided current information on the two MiCTA National programs via links listed below. MiCTA has supported its Universal Service Fund (USF) E-Rate members for many years by providing competitive “best practices” conducted RFP Telecommunications programs, on-going information, and training related to the USF E-Rate funding process. In 2013 the FCC released a new “Notice of Proposed Rulemaking” (NPRM) for the E-Rate program and it is expected that more positive changes to the program will be instituted by the Commission over the coming years.
After many “change in rules/eligible services” filing requests with the FCC, MiCTA was pleased with the Commission’s passage of Order 12-150 on December 12, 2012, creating the Healthcare Connect Fund under the existing RHC Telecommunications Program. This new “Broadband” driven program seeks to enhance the capability of Rural HCPs to deliver a higher level of quality health care through the funding of “Advanced Broadband” services and stimulation of “HCP Consortiums” allowing “Non-Rural” HCPs to participate for the first time adding expertise to the diagnostic and treatment process.
MiCTA continues to support the 470 bid process (E-Rate) and now, the new 461 bid process (Health Care Connect Fund) allowing you, our eligible members, more time to concentrate on filing you “Request for Service” form 471 (E-Rate) or “Request for Service” form 462 (Healthcare Connect Fund). by taking advantage of the results of the new MSA’s (Master Service Agreements) MiCTA is providing to our membership that impact both programs. In working closely with FCC and USAC officials, MiCTA is attempting to both create uniformity wherever possible in process and procedural rules, as well as technically advance “Eligible Services” for both programs.
Healthcare Connect Fund
On March 1, 2014 the initial 462 “Funding Request” application process opened. One of the positive outcomes of this new program is the FCC form 462 and supporting documentation may be filed through the end of the funding year which will end on June 30, 2015. This extended 462 filing process provides the opportunity for qualified applicants to still receive funding within the annual July 1 to June 30 funding cycle on a “first come first severed” basis as long as annual funding is still available.
Gary Green - MiCTA Consultant for USF E-Rate/Healthcare Connect Fund