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WASHINGTON. DC 205 10-0905


June 4, 2014


The Honorable Tom Wheeler


Federal Communications Commission

445 Twelfth Street, SW

Washington, DC 20554

Dear Chairman Wheeler:

Thank you for your efforts to strengthen and modernize theE-Rate program to

meet the modern digital connectivity needs of American schools and libraries. I share

your desire to rapidly expand high-speed broadband connections to all eligible providers.

As you move forward with these efforts, I encourage you to consider flexible

approaches that may allow enhanced broadband connectivity in traditionally underserved

areas. In Florida, for example, a number of schools and libraries in the Panhandle and

central part of the State currently have limited access to affordable, high-capacity

broadband connections to serve their increasing needs. It is my understanding that three

Florida rural educational consortia recently highlighted these challenges to Commission

staff at a May 6, 2014, E-Rate Modernization Workshop.

I urge you to consider the views of these three Florida rural educational consortia.

Specifically, the Commission may want to consider allowing these entities, when they are

unable to receive bids for competitively priced services, to useE-Rate funds for certain

connections between impacted rural schools and libraries in their communities.

Thank you in advance for your consideration of these concerns, and for your

continued support of a robust E-Rate program.

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