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Thursday, July 14, 2005

Extended Outreach site visit - what is it?

Well, it's happened. One of my clients has been selected for a "site visit" by USAC. So I'm taking the opportunity to let everyone see what it's like. But first, let's talk about what these visits are.

If you ask USAC, they'll tell you that the site visits are part of a new outreach campaigns, to facilitate the transfer of information between applicants and USAC. The visits do present an opportunity for feedback, and one of the items in the first report from the auditors was their surprise at the high level of fear among applicants.

But the word in the applicant community is that it's a "mini-audit." In addition to observing the funded equipment or service in action, the auditors will want to see tech plan approvals, proof of payment, etc. I'll talk more about how serious an audit it is as we go through the process together. At first glance, it looks like a Selective Review plus physical inspection.

The reason it's called "mini" is that the audit focuses on one FRN, not all your funding. Only records which relate to that FRN will be requested. Only equipment or services funded by that FRN will be inspected.

Tomorrow we'll talk about how you get selected for a site visit.

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