Senate to hold E-rate hearing

On July 17th, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation will hold a hearing on E-rate. According to the District Dispatch, the hearing is on “…strengthening the E-rate program and expanding access to the latest digital technology and learning tools in our libraries and schools.” The hearing is scheduled to coincide with the Open Meeting of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) being held on July 19th. At this meeting, the Commissioners will consider an E-rate Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) that would modernize the E-rate program to support high-speed broadband. Maine State Librarian Linda Lord, who also serves as the Chair of the ALA E-Rate Task Force, will speak on behalf of libraries.

If interested, here’s how you can learn more:

  • Listen to the hearing – On Wednesday, July 17th at 2:30pm, the hearing, E-Rate 2.0: Connecting Every Child to the Transformative Power of Technology, will be broadcast live via webcast. Refresh the webpage at 2:20pm to begin automatically streaming the webcast. The webcast will also be archived.
  • Listen to the Open Meeting – On Friday, July 19th at 10:30am, listen to the live webcast of the Open Commission Meeting during which E-rate will be discussed. The archived webcast will also be available at the same site.
  • Share your E-rate and library broadband success stories – The ALA Office for Information Technology Policy is interested in hearing your success stories. Email Marijke Visser and/or Larra Clark at and
  • Read up on E-rate – For more information, including some background on the E-rate program and current efforts for improvement, see the District Dispatch post.

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