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Summary of CIPA Regulations
Background
 
The Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA) is a federal law enacted by Congress in December 2000 to address concerns about access in schools and libraries to the Internet and other information. For any school or library that receives discounts for Internet access or for internal connections, CIPA imposes certain requirements. In early 2001, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued rules to ensure that CIPA is carried out.
 
What CIPA Requires
  1. Under CIPA, schools and libraries subject to CIPA do not receive the discounts offered by the "E-Rate" program (discounts that make access to the Internet affordable to schools and libraries) unless they certify that they have certain Internet safety measures in place. These include measures to block or filter pictures that: (a) are obscene, (b) contain child pornography, or (c) when computers with Internet access are used by minors, are harmful to minors;
     
  2. Schools subject to CIPA are required to adopt a policy to monitor online activities of minors; and
     
  3. Schools and libraries subject to CIPA are required to adopt a policy addressing: (a) access by minors to inappropriate matter on the Internet and World Wide Web; (b) the safety and security of minors when using electronic mail, chat rooms, and other forms of direct electronic communications; (c) unauthorized access, including so-called "hacking," and other unlawful activities by minors online; (d) unauthorized disclosure, use, and dissemination of personal information regarding minors; and (e) restricting minors' access to materials harmful to them. CIPA does not require the tracking of Internet use by minors or adults.
For the school year July 2001 through June 2002 and thereafter, schools and libraries were required to certify that they had their safety policies and technology in place, or that they were taking the necessary actions to put them in place before receiving E-rate funding for the following school year.
 
After a lower court found the application of CIPA to libraries unconstitutional, the United States Supreme Court upheld the statute in U.S. v. American Library Association.
 
For further information on CIPA or to apply for Universal Service, contact the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) Schools and Libraries Division (SLD) at www.sl.universalservice.org. SLD also operates a client service bureau to answer questions at 1-888-203-8100.
Full Text of the CIPA Law


HR 4600 IH, Children's Internet Protection Act.
Re: requiring schools and libraries that receive e-rate subsidies to use filtering software.
Date Introduced: June 8, 2000.
Sponsor: Rep. Chip Pickering (R-MS).
Source: Library of Congress.


106th CONGRESS
2d Session
H. R. 4600

To require schools and libraries to implement filtering or blocking technology for computers with Internet access as a condition of universal service discounts under the Communications Act of 1934.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

June 8, 2000

Mr. PICKERING (for himself, Mr. FRANKS of New Jersey, Mr. TAUZIN, Mr. LARGENT, Mr. CRAMER, Mr. PITTS, Mr. BAKER, Mr. JONES of North Carolina, Mr. DEMINT, Mr. HILLEARY, Mr. HUTCHINSON, Mr. WICKER, and Mr. ISTOOK) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Commerce


A BILL

To require schools and libraries to implement filtering or blocking technology for computers with Internet access as a condition of universal service discounts under the Communications Act of 1934.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the `Children's Internet Protection Act'.

SEC. 2. REQUIREMENT FOR SCHOOLS AND LIBRARIES TO IMPLEMENT FILTERING OR BLOCKING TECHNOLOGY FOR COMPUTERS WITH INTERNET ACCESS AS CONDITION OF UNIVERSAL SERVICE DISCOUNTS.

(a) SCHOOLS- Section 254(h) of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 254(h)) is amended--

    (1) by redesignating paragraph (5) as paragraph (7); and

    (2) by inserting after paragraph (4) the following new paragraph (5):

      `(5) REQUIREMENTS FOR CERTAIN SCHOOLS WITH COMPUTERS HAVING INTERNET ACCESS-

        `(A) INTERNET FILTERING-

          `(i) IN GENERAL- Except as provided in clause (ii), an elementary or secondary school having computers with Internet access may not receive services at discount rates under paragraph (1)(B) unless the school, school board, or other authority with responsibility for administration of the school--

            `(I) submits to the Commission a certification described in subparagraph (B); and

            `(II) ensures the use of such computers in accordance with the certification.

          `(ii) APPLICABILITY- The prohibition in paragraph (1) shall not apply with respect to a school that receives services at discount rates under paragraph (1)(B) only for purposes other than the provision of Internet access, Internet service, or internal connections.

        `(B) CERTIFICATION- A certification under this subparagraph is a certification that the school, school board, or other authority with responsibility for administration of the school--

          `(i) has selected a technology for its computers with Internet access in order to filter or block Internet access through such computers to--

            `(I) material that is obscene;

            `(II) child pornography; and

            `(III) material that is harmful to minors during the use of such computers by a minor; and

          `(ii) is enforcing a policy to ensure the operation of the technology during any use of such computers.

        `(C) USE OF TECHNOLOGY-

          `(i) ADDITIONAL USE- A school, school board, or other authority may also use a technology covered by a certification under subparagraph (B) to filter or block Internet access through the computers concerned to any material in addition to the material specified in that subparagraph that the school, school board, or other authority determines to be inappropriate.

          `(ii) DISABLING DURING ADULT USE- An administrator, supervisor, or other authority may disable the technology, during use by an adult, to enable unfiltered access for bona fide research or other lawful purpose.

        `(D) TIMING OF IMPLEMENTATION-

          `(i) IN GENERAL- Subject to clause (ii) in the case of any school covered by this paragraph as of the effective date of this paragraph under section 2(h) of the Children's Internet Protection Act, the certification under subparagraph (B) shall be made as part of the application process for the next program funding year [Struck out->][ (?) ][<-Struck out] following enactment, and for each subsequent year thereafter.

          `(ii) PROCESS-

            `(I) SCHOOLS WITH FILTERING INTERNET TECHNOLOGY INSTALLED- A school covered by clause (i) which has already purchased and installed Internet filtering technology shall certify to its compliance with subparagraph (B) during each annual program application cycle.

            `(II) SCHOOLS WITHOUT INTERNET FILTERING TECHNOLOGY INSTALLED- A school covered by clause (i) which has not purchased and installed Internet filtering technology--

              `(aa) for the first program year in which they are applying for funds, shall certify that it is undertaking procurement to purchase and install filtering technology; and

              `(bb) for the second program year, shall certify that they are in compliance with subparagraph (B).

            Any school that is unable to certify compliance in the second program year shall be ineligible for all funding for the second year and all subsequent years under this program, until such time as the school comes into compliance.

            `(III) WAIVERS- Any school subject to subclause (II) that cannot come into compliance with subparagraph (B) in the second year may seek a waiver of subclause (II)(bb) if State or local procurement rules or regulations or competitive bidding requirements prevent the making of the certification otherwise required by such subclause. A school, school board, or other authority with responsibility for administration of the school shall notify the Commission of the applicability of such subclause to the school. Such notice shall certify that the school in question will be brought into compliance prior to the start of the third program year in which the school is applying for funds.

        `(E) NONCOMPLIANCE-

          `(i) FAILURE TO SUBMIT CERTIFICATION- Any school that knowingly fails to comply with the application guidelines regarding the annual submission of certification required by this paragraph shall not be eligible for funding under this program.

          `(ii) FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH CERTIFICATION- Any school that knowingly fails to ensure the use of its computers in accordance with a certification under subparagraph (B) shall be subject to enforcement action by the Commission, up to and including full reimbursement of funds received in violation.'.

(b) LIBRARIES- Such section 254(h) is further amended by inserting after paragraph (5), as amended by subsection (a) of this section, the following new paragraph:

    `(6) REQUIREMENTS FOR CERTAIN LIBRARIES WITH COMPUTERS HAVING INTERNET ACCESS-

      `(A) INTERNET FILTERING-

        `(i) IN GENERAL- A library having one or more computers with Internet access may not receive services at discount rates under paragraph (1)(B) unless the library--

          `(I) submits to the Commission a certification described in subparagraph (B); and

          `(II) ensures the use of such computers in accordance with the certification.

        `(ii) APPLICABILITY- The prohibition in paragraph (1) shall not apply with respect to a library that receives services at discount rates under paragraph (1)(B) only for purposes other than the provision of Internet access, Internet service, or internal connections.

      `(B) CERTIFICATION- A certification under this subparagraph is a certification that the library--

        `(i) has selected a technology for its computer or computers with Internet access in order to filter or block Internet access through such computer or computers to--

          `(I) material that is obscene;

          `(II) child pornography; and

          `(III) material that is harmful to minors during any use of such computer or computers by a minor; and

        `(ii) is enforcing a policy to ensure the operation of the technology during the use of such computer or computers.

      `(C) USE OF TECHNOLOGY-

        `(i) ADDITIONAL USE- A library may also use a technology covered by a certification under subparagraph (B) to filter or block Internet access through the computers concerned to any material in addition to the material specified in that subparagraph that the library determines to be inappropriate.

        `(ii) DISABLING DURING ADULT USE- An administrator, supervisor, or other authority may disable the technology, during use by an adult, to enable unfiltered access for bona fide research or other lawful purpose.

      `(D) TIMING OF IMPLEMENTATION-

        `(i) IN GENERAL- Subject to clause (ii) in the case of any library covered by this paragraph as of the effective date of this paragraph under section 2(h) of the Children's Internet Protection Act, the certification under subparagraph (B) shall be made as part of the application process for the next program funding year [Struck out->][ (?) ][<-Struck out] following enactment, and for each subsequent year thereafter.

        `(ii) PROCESS-

          `(I) LIBRARIES WITH FILTERING INTERNET TECHNOLOGY INSTALLED- A library covered by clause (i) which has already purchased and installed Internet filtering technology shall certify to its compliance with subparagraph (B) during each annual program application cycle.

          `(II) LIBRARIES WITHOUT INTERNET FILTERING TECHNOLOGY INSTALLED- A library covered by clause (i) which has not purchased and installed Internet filtering technology--

            `(aa) for the first program year in which they are applying for funds, shall certify that it is undertaking procurement to purchase and install filtering technology; and

            `(bb) for the second program year, shall certify that they are in compliance with subparagraph (B).

            Any library that is unable to certify compliance in the second program year shall be ineligible for all funding for the second year and all subsequent years under this program, until such time as the library comes into compliance.

          `(III) WAIVERS- Any library subject to subclause (II) that cannot come into compliance with subparagraph (B) in the second year may seek a waiver of subclause (II)(bb) if State or local procurement rules or regulations or competitive bidding requirements prevent the making of the certification otherwise required by such subclause. A library, library board, or other authority with responsibility for administration of the library shall notify the Commission of the applicability of such subclause to the library. Such notice shall certify that the library in question will be brought into compliance prior to the start of the third program year in which the library is applying for funds.

      `(E) NONCOMPLIANCE-

        `(i) FAILURE TO SUBMIT CERTIFICATION- Any library that knowingly fails to comply with the application guidelines regarding the annual submission of certification required by this paragraph shall not be eligible for funding under this program.

        `(ii) FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH CERTIFICATION- Any library that knowingly fails to ensure the use of its computers in accordance with a certification under subparagraph (B) shall be subject to enforcement action by the Commission, up to and including full reimbursement of funds received in violation.'.

(c) DEFINITIONS- Paragraph (7) of such section, as redesignated by subsection (a)(1) of this section, is amended by adding at the end the following:

    `(D) MINOR- The term `minor' means any individual who has not attained the age of 17 years.

    `(E) OBSCENE- The term `obscene' has the meaning given such term in section 1460 of title 18, United States Code.

    `(F) CHILD PORNOGRAPHY- The term `child pornography' has the meaning given such term in section 2256 of title 18, United States Code.

    `(G) MATERIAL THAT IS HARMFUL TO MINORS- The term `material that is harmful to minors' means any communication, picture, image, graphic image file, article, recording, writing, or other matter of any kind that--

      `(i) taken as a whole and with respect to minors, appeals to a prurient interest in nudity, sex, or excretion;

      `(ii) depicts, describes, or represents, in a patently offensive way with respect to what is suitable for minors, an actual or simulated sexual act or sexual contact, actual or simulated normal or perverted sexual acts, or a lewd exhibition of the genitals; and

      `(iii) taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value.

    `(H) SEXUAL ACT; SEXUAL CONTACT- The terms `sexual act' and `sexual contact' have the meanings given such terms in section 2246 of title 18, United States Code.'.

(d) CONFORMING AMENDMENT- Paragraph (4) of such section is amended by striking `paragraph (5)(A)' and inserting `paragraph (7)(A)'.

(e) SEPARABILITY- If any provision of paragraph (5) or (6) of section 254(h) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended by this section, or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of such paragraph and the application of such paragraph to other persons or circumstances shall not be affected thereby.

(f) REGULATIONS-

    (1) REQUIREMENT- The Federal Communications Commission shall prescribe regulations for purposes of administering the provisions of paragraphs (5) and (6) of section 254(h) of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended by this section.

    (2) DEADLINE- Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Commission shall prescribe regulations under paragraph (1) so as to ensure that such regulations take effect 120 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.

(g) AVAILABILITY OF RATES- Discounted rates under section 254(h)(1)(B) of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 254(h)(1)(B))--

    (1) shall be available in amounts up to the annual cap on Federal universal service support for schools and libraries only for services covered by Federal Communications Commission regulations on priorities for funding telecommunications services, Internet access, Internet services, and Internet connections that assign priority for available funds for the poorest schools; and

    (2) to the extent made available under paragraph (1), may be used for the purchase or acquisition of filtering or blocking products necessary to meet the requirements of section 254(h) (5) and (6) of that Act, but not for the purchase of software or other technology other than what is required to meet those requirements.

(h) EFFECTIVE DATE- The amendments made by this section shall take effect 120 days after the date of the enactment of this Act.

 


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