CTF Eligibility Restrictions for Community-Based Organizations

Under the proposed criteria, your organization must have/do one of the following:

  • Education that is like a traditional school (see further notes below)
  • Direct access to computers (computer lab or drop-in, like a library)
  • Direct delivery of health care services (state licensed, accepting MediCal and MediCare)
  • Job placement services
  • 2-1-1 referral

Also, your organization must meet these new requirements:

  • The program (above) must be more than 50% of your mission
  • Your service must be supplied directly to individuals at specific geographic locations
  • Your organization must have revenues of less than $5 million (exceptions for local chapter structure)
  • Your clients must use the computer with their own fingers (exceptions for disabled, language barrier and others)
  • Your board members must live in the community the organization serves

There are further increased restrictions for organizations qualifying with health service delivery and educational instruction.

The new criteria defines education very narrowly, even as the rest of the world changes how it learns. The proposal currently reads that education is eligible when it is a “regular, ongoing, pre-school or K-12 academic educational or instructional program, that can also include ESL and language education, literacy, job training, technology instruction, and information on public benefit and social services programs eligibility and access.” Religious organizations are specifically excluded (they might qualify under the Pre- and K-12 Schools category or they may provide one the other types of instruction listed above). Planning or promoting educational instruction are “administrative functions” and are specifically excluded.

Nonprofits may qualify in the category of Health Services if they are staffed by onsite licensed personnel AND take MediCare and MediCal (or provide low cost services) AND serve designated area needs and qualify for certain FCC programs (see Proposed Decision for details).

If you are confused, contact the PUC staff. If you feel that your CTF elegibility status may be threatened, contact a PUC commissioner and ask them to vote against the Proposed Decision on OIR R.13-01-010.