The Federal Communications Commission intends to harness the federal E-rate program to restore telecommunications services to schools and libraries affected by Hurricane Katrina, commission Chairman Kevin J. Martin has announced.
Mr. Martin said in a Sept. 22 statement to the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee that the FCC can authorize $96 million in E-rate funds for the approximately 600 schools and libraries in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama hit by the hurricane late last month.
He said the application period would be reopened for the 2005 funding year, which runs through June 2006, to allow schools and libraries to amend their requests for E-rate aid.
According to Mr. Martin, millions more from the $2.25 billion program will be available for schools and libraries that serve evacuees; they will be allowed to amend their applications to account for unexpected increases in enrollment and population.
A version of this article appeared in the September 28, 2005 edition of Education Week