Press Release

Washington, DC – October 20, 2022 – Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman
Rosenworcel today announced the formal launch of a new pilot program to make it easier for
Tribal libraries to apply for broadband funding through the E-Rate program, which supports
eligible schools and libraries.

“For too long, some Tribal libraries were shut off from E-Rate support because they didn’t
meet the technical definition of a library in the Commission’s rules. We fixed this problem,
and now we are working to make the sign-up process easier,” said Chairwoman Rosenworcel. “Our pilot will provide one-on-one help to Tribal libraries throughout the sign-up and benefit process. We want to do everything possible to make sure Tribal communities have full access to the digital age.”

The E-Rate program provides support to ensure that schools and libraries can obtain affordable, high-speed broadband services and internal connections. The FCC’s pilot will initially target 20 Tribal libraries that are new to the program or have had challenges applying in the past. The program will provide one-on-one assistance in all aspects of planning and applying for ERate support, and help participants once they successfully apply to ensure they are supported during the invoicing and other post-commitment processes. Based on lessons learned, the program could be expanded to include more Tribal libraries and targeted, in-person training opportunities. Applications to participate in the pilot program will be due on November 18.

To apply to join the E-Rate inaugural pilot or to learn more about the E-Rate program please visit: https://www.fcc.gov/tribal-libraries.

Press Release

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