Frequently Asked Questions
Q. What is a larger project? What items are allowable under a larger project?
A. The definition of a larger project is multiple types of items grouped together on one invoice from one vendor for the purpose of a larger upgrade or replacement project that is for multiple branches or system-wide. Certain items are only allowable if they are a part of a larger project, such as computer accessories and network hardware.
Q. Can I buy copiers and/or coin ops for copiers with Lib Tech funding?
A. Lib Tech will pay for a copier, copier/coin op combo, or the coin op by itself. However, the program will not pay for a lease to own copier and/or coin op.
Q. Can I buy mobile hotspots with Lib Tech funding?
A. Lib Tech will pay for the device itself but not the data plan.
Q. Can you buy RFID tags, receipt paper, games, books, cables, software, etc. with an equipment purchase?
A. These items are considered supplies and are not allowed. Be careful of bundles that include these items. The items would need to be listed separately on the invoice and crossed out when submitted for reimbursement.
Q. What if my invoice bundles items together and includes unallowable items?
A. If hardware is bundled with unallowable items (such as computer accessories, installation, and support), you must ask the vendor to split the charges.
They can be on the same invoice but different line items or you can get two different invoices (one for hardware and one for other services) and only submit the invoice with the hardware. If a computer accessory is included as a free part of buying hardware (such as a keyboard/mouse with a Dell computer), as long as the invoice says free, it will not be a problem.
Q. After the pandemic, how do we deploy devices purchased under Lib Tech when we re-open (including those for the 2020 Census)?
A. Please see the Best Practices document for more information on deployment, storage, and, most importantly, documentation. Document, document, document!
Q. How do I ensure that part of my technology funding for FY2020 goes towards facilitating the completion of the 2020 Census?
A. The funds are provided specifically for public access technology procurement - from public access computers to loaner technology to accessibility technology - that aids in the facilitation of census completion.
Libraries should ensure that there are adequate numbers of machines and available technology to meet the needs of all patrons who would like to use the library in order to complete the census.
Q. What are some ideas for allowable items that can be used for Census?
A. Allowable items for the Census can include public access machines and/or tablets, copier/print stations for mail applications, mobile census taking stations, and assistive technology upgrades to existing equipment. If you have any other ideas, please don't hesitate to email the GPLS Help Desk.
Q. What are the technology requirements for filling out the Census online?
A. More information can be found on the Census Technology FAQs webpage. The webpage includes information on cybersecurity, data security, and operations (such as best browsers and devices).
E-rate cat 2
Q. Can Lib Tech funding be used to pay for the library's portion of E-Rate Category 2?
A. Lib Tech funding can be used for equipment and cabling as a larger project only. Installation and maintenance or service plans are not allowable and will not be reimbursed.
If you are apply for Category 2 funding this year, here is a timeline for both E-Rate and Lib Tech:
- Go out to bid for E-Rate services by December 2019.
- File Category 2 application sometime between January and March 2020.
- Wait to hear if funded as early as April 2020 or as late as October 2020.
- E-Rate doesn't cover 100% of the cost for Category 2 services. Libraries are responsible for the non-discounted portion, usually around 20% (discount rate can be found in the library's EPC profile).
- Submit FY2020 Lib Tech purchasing plan based on funding decision by [TBD].
- Review plan with Shannan Furlow before submitting for approval.
- Please send quote for installation along with purchasing plan.
- Once funding is committed, install Category 2 equipment and services.
- For Lib Tech, libraries must wait until at least July 1, 2020 to be invoiced for installation or, preferably, until after Lib Tech purchasing plan approval. The latest that equipment can be installed is by January 2021. Extension of deadline is possible in special cases.
- For E-rate, install equipment at the very latest by September 30, 2021.
- Apply for reimbursement of installation of Category 2 services.
- For Lib Tech, libraries must submit for reimbursement by [TBD]. Extension of deadline is possible in special cases.
- For E-rate, the library or vendor must submit invoices by January 28, 2022.
Q. I am interested in purchasing Chromebooks and/or other Chrome devices. What should I do before purchasing these types of items?
A. Chrome devices receive automatic updates for specific length of time. Before purchasing any Chrome device, it is recommended that you check the Auto Update Expiration (AUE) date to ensure the device you are purchasing has auto updates enabled for a longer period of time.
Q. What do we do if the pricing of an item changes from the time of the purchasing plan to the time of purchasing (i.e. raised in price)?
A. For items that have changes in pricing, you may adjust the quantity purchased as needed. You may also keep the quantity as is and instead adjust the "Amount Requested" column on the invoice list to get to your allocated amount.
For example, the invoice amount is $2,600 but you only have $2,500 left in your allocated amount. You can put the “Invoice Amount” as $2,600 and the “Amount Requested” as $2,500. The library would then cover the remaining $100 from their own funds.
Remember the grand totals on the payment request invoices list must match your allocation exactly!
Q. Can I change vendor and/or item after submitting the purchasing plan?
A. Due to the restrictions this year, you cannot change vendor or item after they are approved. If a serious issue occurs with the vendor after the purchasing plan is approved, please email the GPLS Help Desk.
Q. My equipment is on back order and/or delayed. What should I do?
A. Please wait to submit your reimbursement until all items are received. If a delay will affect your ability to submit your reimbursement on time, please email the GPLS Help Desk.
Q. When will I receive payment? OR What is the status of my reimbursement?
A. GSFIC sends payment within 30 days of receipt of the reimbursement packet.
Q. There was a problem with my reimbursement and my amount was adjusted. OR I need to revise my reimbursement due to an adjustment.
A. ACH adjustments require further review. Please email the GPLS Help Desk for additional assistance.
Q. I have money left over. Can I spend it?
A. After the reimbursement packet has been submitted, money can no longer be spent. Funding does not roll over to the next funding year.
Q. My auditors need confirmation of how much I received in Lib Tech funding? OR Can you verify payment for FYXX?
Payment verification requires a review of transaction history. Please email the form and/or request to the GPLS Help Desk for additional assistance.
Q. Can we use grant funded items in areas other than public access, such as circulation?
A. Not until the bond has expired: items purchased FY2015 and earlier.
Q. What is the policy for the surplus of grant funded items and use after a five-year shelf-life?
A. Any items purchased in FY2015 or earlier, the bonds for these funding years are no longer active. As a result, the equipment purchased during these years can be used as the libraries see fit.
Any items purchased in FY2017 forward are still considered a part of active bonds. They must remain in public access areas/used in public programming.
More information on the last five funding years can be found on the Previous Funding Years webpage. Information includes legislative intent, bond commitment letter, and resources.