November 15, 2010 13:20 by Nina
We talk a lot about e-Rate on this blog. We discuss the changes they recently made to expand the eligible services for funding and how hundreds and thousands of schools benefit from this program. However, recently e-Rate has been in the news for a different reason.
The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has reached a civil settlement with Hewlett-Packard Co. (HP) for alleged e-Rate fraud, following an extensive investigation by the DOJ and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the two agencies said Nov. 10.
Acting on tips from whistleblowers, the FCC and the DOJ investigated allegations that contractors working with HP and other companies lavished gifts on Dallas Independent School District and Houston Independent School District personnel in order to get e-Rate contracts that included some $17 million in HP equipment.According to the allegations, contractors working with HP provided meals and entertainment—including trips on a yacht and tickets to the 2004 Super Bowl—to school district officials to get inside information and win e-Rate contracts that were supposed to be awarded through a competitive-bidding process.
What do you think about this? Do you feel any differently about HP because of these allegations? Let us know on the School Announcement Blog.