October 1, 2009

TO:         Directors of Public Library Systems Directors of Reference and Research Library Resources Systems

FROM:  Maribeth Krupczak, State E-Rate Coordinator for Libraries

SUBJECT: New 2010-2013 E-Rate Technology Plans Due March 30, 2010

The current library system E-Rate Technology Plans cover the three-year period, July 1, 2007 - June 30, 2010. Based upon the requirement of the Schools and Libraries Division (SLD), the New York State Library is requesting new E-Rate Technology Plans to cover the period July 1, 2010 - June 30, 2013. The deadline for receipt of the library system plans in the New York State Library's Division of Library Development is March 30, 2010. Please send one paper and one electronic copy of your plan to the attention of Maribeth Krupczak, E-Rate Coordinator.

We suggest that member library plans should also be submitted to their library systems by March 30, 2010. Library systems will review the member libraries' plans and send a certified list to Maribeth Krupczak’s attention by May 31, 2010. The member libraries' plans should be retained by the library system. Please do not send member plans to the State Library. A copy of the certification form for member library plans is available on the DLD website at http://www.nysl.nysed.gov/libdev/univsvc/. The submitted copy of the certification must have an original signature.

Both the library systems' and the member libraries' plans are covered by the same SLD criteria and the same level of specificity for technology plans. The criteria are described in the text below. Library systems should require member plans to have the same level of detail as their own.

Who Needs a Plan?

Public libraries and library systems that seek discounts only for basic local and/or long distance telephone services (wireline or wireless) need not prepare technology plans. If a library system decides that it is not necessary to file a technology plan, then the system needs to file a certification informing the State Library of that decision. A copy of the certification form is available on the DLD website. Please send one copy with original signature to Maribeth Krupczak by March 30, 2010 if your library system determines that it is not necessary to file a technology plan.

For all other purposes, such as Internet service and internal connections, before discounts are provided to applicants their technology plans must be approved by an SLD-certified technology plan approver. In New York State, the State Library provides this certification. Assisting the State Library in this effort is E-Rate Central, a company that holds a contract with the State Education Department to provide E-Rate information services for all New York State schools and libraries.

[NOTE: The Sixth Report and Order made changes to technology plan rules. LIbraries requesting only Priority 1 services in FundingYear 2011 and forward do not need to file a plan.]

Technology Plan

Required Components

The SLD states that the technology plan required for the E-Rate discount should guide planning and investment--both for E-Rate funds and for the other resources needed to take advantage of technology. The plan must contain the following five components:

1. Clear goals and a realistic strategy for using telecommunications and information technology to improve education or library services

2. A professional development strategy to ensure that staff know how to use these new technologies to improve education or library services

3. An assessment of the telecommunication services, hardware, software, and other services that will be needed to improve education or library services

4. A sufficient budget to acquire and support the non-discounted elements of the plan: the hardware, software, professional development, and other services that will be needed to implement the strategy [NOTE: From Funding Year 2011 forward, this element is no longer required.]

5. An evaluation process that enables the school or library to monitor progress toward the specified goals.

Under item 4, the plan must provide specific budget details for each of the three years if the system wishes to receive approval for a three-year plan. Technology plans must be written before filing a Form 470 for the part of the year covered in the application.

Important Information

The following information was taken from the E-Rate News for October 2, 2006 from E-Rate Central.

“From a program compliance viewpoint, there are two other important 470 issues that the SLD has been stressing in their 2006 training sessions and in other recent reviews.

Technology Planning:
The SLD is stressing the requirement that an applicant must have "created" a "written" (but not necessarily an "approved") technology plan covering the prospective funding year before filing its Form 470. The underlying premise is that an applicant should have decided what services are needed, and how they are to be financed, before requesting bids on those services.

Until recently, the only time the SLD might actually check on a plan's pre-Form 470 status was during a Selective Review, site visit, or audit. In July, the SLD began to randomly (or selectively) check Form 486 technology plan certifications. Applicants are being asked to provide copies of their technology plans and their associated approval letters. The following request, however, is also included:

• Please specify in writing the creation date(s) (month/year) of each Technology Plan submitted. [The technology plan creation date is the month and year the technology plan was written, not the date when you began to develop or draft it. The technology plan must be created in sufficient detail to support the services requested on your Form 470, and the creation date must be prior to the date your Form 470 is posted.]

It is important to keep in mind that the SLD is expecting that the technology plans provide a sufficient level of detail to support all the services requested in the 470 and 471 forms and confirmed in the 486 form. In the event of an audit, the examiners will ask for a copy of the technology plan.

Attached to this memo are an SLD document called "Technology Planning: Questions to Consider," relating specifically to components 1, 2 and 5 and a chart outlining the process for approval of library and library system technology plans.

Impact of Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA)

Effective June 23, 2003, the Supreme Court ruled that the filtering requirement in CIPA was constitutional for public libraries. The Court's decision means that any public library using E-Rate for Internet provider costs or for internal connection costs must comply with the law's filtering requirement. The filtering provision does not apply to discounts on telecommunication costs, including voice or data circuits.

For more detailed information about CIPA and E-Rate, you can go to the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction website: http://dpi.wi.gov/pld/cipafaq.html or the website at E-Rate Central at http://www.e-ratecentral.com/CIPA/default.asp.

If you have questions about this memo, the plan requirements or about the review process, please contact Maribeth Krupczak at 518-486-5250 or at mkrupcza@mail.nysed.gov . This memo and all related documents, including certification forms, are available on the State Library's website at: http://www.nysl.nysed.gov/libdev/univsvc/ . Forms are available in both Word and PDF format.

CC:   Bernard Margolis
        Maribeth Krupczak
        Winston Himsworth, E-Rate Central


The information on this page, in .PDF format