Published Online: July 11, 2006
Published in Print: July 12, 2006, as Senate Measure Aims To Bolster E-Rate Funds

News in Brief: A Washington Roundup

Senate Measure Aims To Bolster E-Rate Funds

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A Senate committee has approved a bill addressing financial and administrative issues in the $2.25 billion federal E-Rate program, which supports telecommunications services in schools.

The Senate Science and Transportation Committee on June 28 approved by a 15-7 vote a comprehensive telecommunications bill that includes the E-rate provision. The bill would shore up funding for the E-rate program by allowing the Federal Communication Commission to assess fees on a broader range of telecommunications services than it currently can. The measure would also make permanent the program’s temporary exemption from the federal Anti-Deficiency Act, which bars the FCC from promising to distribute E-rate money to schools before the revenues have been collected.

The House has passed its own telecommunications bill that makes no change to the E-rate program.

Vol. 25, Issue 42, Page 35

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