The E-rate Program and Libraries and Library Consortia, 2000-2004: Trends and Issues
The E-rate program has provided tremendous benefits to libraries, allowing many libraries and library systems to acquire technological equipment and services that would otherwise be too expensive, increasing the availability of public Internet access through libraries. This article analyzes the data related to the E-rate program and the discounts that it has provided to libraries and library systems between 2000 and 2004. By examining the E-rate data in a longitudinal manner, this article explores the trends in the application for and the provision of E-rate discounts to libraries and library consortia at national and state levels. The data suggest that, despite a number of controversies over the years, the program has provided a significant level of support for libraries and library consortia.