Without the internet, many of today’s tasks couldn’t be accomplished or completed without jumping through hoops. Various essential living routines require internet services such as work, school, entertainment, banking, and so much more. The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) is a government-funded program that aims to provide those who struggle to acquire access to the internet to carry out daily activities that relate to basic living with free or reduced cost internet services. Select internet service providers to offer service for participants of the ACP at a discounted rate or for absolutely no charge at all.
The ACP was created through the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and is administered by the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC). There are two ways in which the ACP can benefit a family or individual. While some individuals qualify for a discount of up to $30 a month of service, some will have the pleasure of receiving free service each month until the program is completed or until they become ineligible for it. Those who are interested in seeing if they qualify can visit a participating internet service provider’s website and follow the instructions provided. The internet provider can assist you if you need help with anything.
There are an increasing number of internet providers picking up the ACP as part of their offering. A simple Google search can help you find participating providers in your area! If you are located in the panhandle of Texas, AW Broadband is one of these participating providers. Candidates that qualify for free internet might also receive the one-time $100 benefit that is dedicated toward the purchasing of a computer. Full households with an eligible participant can expect to receive up to $30 off their internet service package. If participants are located on qualified tribal land, they can receive up to a $75 discount.
Discounts vary depending on the services chosen. The discount will never exceed your complete bill of services. Any remaining costs will need to be paid out of pocket by the participant. This could include installation fees, technology support, or other things. If more than one person in a household is eligible for the ACP, that does NOT mean the discount is doubled and so on. Only one discount is allowed per household when using the ACP’s benefit. There are a total of between 40 million to 50 million eligible households eligible to receive the ACP discount, yet most don’t even know.
To qualify for the ACP, you must be a participant in one of the following programs:
Federal Public Housing Assistance (FPHA)
SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)
WIC (Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children)
Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
Veterans Pension or Survivor Benefits
The National School Lunch Program/The School Breakfast Program
Qualifying tribal participants must be enrolled in one of the following programs:
Tribal TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families)
Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance
Tribal Head Start
Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations
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