Vice President Kamala Harris will be announcing today that Affordable Connectivity Program enrollment has reached 10 million.
In a fact sheet released today, the Biden administration outlined the program and offered information about how to participate and how to help spread the word about the program, which pays up to $30 a month toward the cost of broadband for low-income households ($75 monthly on tribal lands).
The program also pays up to $100 per low-income household toward the cost of a tablet, laptop or desktop computer, provided that the household contributes between $10 and $50 toward the cost of the device.
Harris is scheduled to speak at the White House at 2:30 p.m. ET today, a White House spokesperson told Telecompetitor in an email. Harris’ address will be streamed on the White House YouTube page at that time.
Affordable Connectivity Program Enrollment
The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) was established in the infrastructure bill that was signed into law late last year. The program has a budget of $14.2 billion.
The program got underway at the beginning of this year, essentially replacing the previous Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) program, which was established during the COVID-19 pandemic to help cover the cost of broadband for low-income households and households that experienced a loss of income resulting from the pandemic.
The ACP is only available to low-income households – those with income at or below 200% of federal poverty guidelines. Nevertheless, it appears that many households that participated in the EBB are now enrolled in the ACP, helping to fuel the 10 million-household Affordable Connectivity Program enrollment milestone.
As for spreading the word about the ACP, the White House ACP fact sheet released today encourages people and organizations to sign up to help their communities enroll via a White House web page about the ACP.
The web page includes a toolkit with flyers about the program that interested parties can print out for distribution at school packet pickups and food drives. A range of other resources such as sample social media posts and videos are also part of the toolkit.
The fact sheet also recommends:
- Ensuring that local schools, libraries and community centers know about the ACP and have the information needed to help eligible households enroll
- Sharing information about ACP on social media (ready-to-post graphics, videos and public service announcements are also part of the toolkit)
- Requesting a speaker for an event via an email on the ACP web page or training members to serve as local ambassadors for the program
The fact sheet also reiterates how low-income households can demonstrate their eligibility for the ACP. Those enrolled in any of a range of programs are eligible, including SNAP, Medicaid, Federal Public Housing Assistance, SSI, WIC or Lifeline. Those enrolled in the national school lunch program also are eligible, as are those who received a Pell grant during the current award year and those participating in tribal programs such as Tribal TANF, the food distribution program for reservations, and Bureau of Indian Affairs general assistance.