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Minnesota Legislature

Office of the Revisor of Statutes

125B.26 TELECOMMUNICATIONS/INTERNET ACCESS EQUITY AID.
    Subdivision 1. Costs to be submitted. (a) A district or charter school shall submit its actual
telecommunications/Internet access costs for the previous fiscal year, adjusted for any e-rate
revenue received, to the department by August 15 of each year as prescribed by the commissioner.
Costs eligible for reimbursement under this program are limited to the following:
(1) ongoing or recurring telecommunications/Internet access costs associated with Internet
access, data lines, and video links providing:
(i) the equivalent of one data line, video link, or integrated data/video link that relies on a
transport medium that operates at a minimum speed of 1.544 megabytes per second (T1) for
each elementary school, middle school, or high school under section 120A.05, subdivisions 9,
11, and 13
, including the recurring telecommunications line lease costs and ongoing Internet
access service fees; or
(ii) the equivalent of one data line or video circuit, or integrated data/video link that relies
on a transport medium that operates at a minimum speed of 1.544 megabytes per second (T1)
for each district, including recurring telecommunications line lease costs and ongoing Internet
access service fees;
(2) recurring costs of contractual or vendor-provided maintenance on the school district's
wide area network to the point of presence at the school building up to the router, codec, or
other service delivery equipment located at the point of presence termination at the school or
school district;
(3) recurring costs of cooperative, shared arrangements for regional delivery of
telecommunications/Internet access between school districts, postsecondary institutions, and
public libraries including network gateways, peering points, regional network infrastructure,
Internet2 access, and network support, maintenance, and coordination; and
(4) service provider installation fees for installation of new telecommunications lines or
increased bandwidth.
(b) Costs not eligible for reimbursement under this program include:
(1) recurring costs of school district staff providing network infrastructure support;
(2) recurring costs associated with voice and standard telephone service;
(3) costs associated with purchase of network hardware, telephones, computers, or other
peripheral equipment needed to deliver telecommunications access to the school or school district;
(4) costs associated with laying fiber for telecommunications access;
(5) costs associated with wiring school or school district buildings;
(6) costs associated with purchase, installation, or purchase and installation of Internet
filtering; and
(7) costs associated with digital content, including online learning or distance learning
programming, and information databases.
    Subd. 2. E-rates. To be eligible for aid under this section, a district or charter school is
required to file an e-rate application either separately or through its telecommunications access
cluster and have a current technology plan on file with the department. Discounts received on
telecommunications expenditures shall be reflected in the costs submitted to the department
for aid under this section.
    Subd. 3. Reimbursement criteria. The commissioner shall develop criteria for approving
costs submitted by organized school districts and charter schools under subdivision 1.
    Subd. 4. District aid. For fiscal year 2006 and later, a district or charter school's Internet
access equity aid equals the district or charter school's approved cost for the previous fiscal year
according to subdivision 1 exceeding $15 times the district's adjusted marginal cost pupil units for
the previous fiscal year or no reduction if the district is part of an organized telecommunications
access cluster. Equity aid must be distributed to the telecommunications access cluster for
districts that are members of the cluster or to individual districts and charter schools not part of a
telecommunications access cluster.
    Subd. 5. Telecommunications/Internet access services for nonpublic schools. (a) Districts
shall provide each year upon formal request by or on behalf of a nonpublic school, not including
home schools, located in that district or area, ongoing or recurring telecommunications access
services to the nonpublic school either through existing district providers or through separate
providers.
(b) The amount of district aid for telecommunications access services for each nonpublic
school under this subdivision equals the lesser of:
(1) 90 percent of the nonpublic school's approved cost for the previous fiscal year according
to subdivision 1 exceeding $10 for fiscal year 2006 and later times the number of weighted pupils
enrolled at the nonpublic school as of October 1 of the previous school year; or
(2) the product of the district's aid per pupil unit according to subdivision 4 times the number
of weighted pupils enrolled at the nonpublic school as of October 1 of the previous school year.
(c) For purposes of this subdivision, nonpublic school pupils shall be weighted by grade
level using the weighting factors defined in section 126C.05, subdivision 1.
(d) Each year, a district providing services under paragraph (a) may claim up to five percent
of the aid determined in paragraph (b) for costs of administering this subdivision. No district may
expend an amount for these telecommunications access services which exceeds the amount
allocated under this subdivision. The nonpublic school is responsible for the Internet access
costs not covered by this section.
(e) At the request of a nonpublic school, districts may allocate the amount determined in
paragraph (b) directly to the nonpublic school to pay for or offset the nonpublic school's costs
for telecommunications access services; however, the amount allocated directly to the nonpublic
school may not exceed the actual amount of the school's ongoing or recurring telecommunications
access costs.
    Subd. 6. Severability. If any portion of this section is found by a court to be unconstitutional,
the remaining portions of the section shall remain in effect.
History: 1Sp2005 c 5 art 4 s 15