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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Holiday cheer

Today a holiday tradition brought a smile to my lips. That's nice, except the tradition I'm talking about is on the USAC home page: the countdown to the end of the filing window. It just strikes my funny bone that the countdown includes the number of seconds until the window closes.

Once upon a time, seconds mattered. I can't find the appeal, but I remember back in the bad old days, an applicant drove a long way to a post office open until midnight (I seem to remember a snow storm involved). The courier arrived at 11:59, but didn't get to the front of the line until 12:01 (a line at the post office at midnight?). The FCC said, "Sorry, denied. You should have applied earlier." (OK, that's not a real quote. Here's a real one: "We find that the above-captioned Petitioners have not demonstrated special circumstances to warrant waiver. The Commission has strictly and consistently enforced filing deadlines, allowing waivers of deadlines only in very limited and compelling situations. In light of the large number of applications that the Schools and Libraries Division (SLD) of USAC reviews and processes each year, it is administratively necessary to place on the applicant the responsibility of complying with all relevant rules and procedures, including filing deadlines. Hence, employee illness, staff failure to perform a job properly, inclement weather, or misunderstanding of the rules does not relieve applicants of their responsibility to comply with the Commission’s rules and procedures. Further, the assertion that denial of an application may have a detrimental impact on an applicant does not create special circumstances or suggest particular facts that warrant a waiver of the Commission’s rules.")

Bishop Perry hasn't been around as long, but he sure spreads as much joy in the E-Rate community as that bishop from Izmir.

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