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County residents may qualify for internet discount | News, Sports, Jobs

County residents may qualify for internet discount | News, Sports, Jobs
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Households in Warren County may qualify for some relief on their internet bills through the Affordable Connectivity Program.

“The Affordable Connectivity Program is an Federal Communications Commission benefit program that helps ensure that households can afford the broadband they need for work, school, healthcare and more,” according to FCC. “The benefit provides a discount of up to $30 per month toward internet service for eligible households and up to $75 per month for households on qualifying Tribal lands.”

Internet services, including wireless plans, can be eligible. “The Affordable Connectivity Program is limited to one monthly service discount and one device discount per household,” according to FCC.

A list of providers is available through the FCC website.

Atlantic Broadband published a release Wednesday.

“I’m pleased to share the news that Atlantic Broadband, the eight-largest cable operating in the US, will provide broadband connectivity at discounted prices for financially struggling households through the Federal Communications Commission’s Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP),” Danny Ziolkowski said on behalf of Atlantic Broadband. “Through the ACP, Atlantic Broadband will broadband service by up to $30 a month for eligible households (and up to $75 per month for households on qualifying Tribal lands) so they can stay connected to daily essentials such as telehealth, distance learning, and work from home.”

“All customers that meet financial eligibility requirements may choose the Atlantic Broadband internet package that best fits their household needs,” according to the release. “Atlantic Broadband will apply the Affordable Connectivity Program discount as a monthly credit against the cost of the broadband service.”

“As coronavirus continues to surge, connectivity is more critical than ever,” Atlantic Broadband Vice President Products and Programming Heather McCallion said. “Our support of the Affordable Connectivity Program will ensure households facing financial hardships will have access to a reliable internet connection now and in the future.”

The ACP was created in November when Congress passed the Infrastructure Act, providing $14 billion to modify and extend the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program (EBB). Households fully enrolled in EBB as of December 31, 2021, will continue to receive their current monthly benefit until March 1, 2022.

ACP enrollment is open.

According to the FCC, “A household is eligible if a member of the household meets at least one of the criteria below:

¯ Has an income that is at or below 200% of the federal poverty guidelines; or

¯ Participates in certain assistance programs, such as SNAP, Medicaid, Federal Public Housing Assistance, SSI, WIC, or Lifeline;

¯ Participates in Tribal specific programs, such as Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance, Tribal TANF, or Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations;

¯ Is approved to receive benefits under the free and reduced-price school lunch program or the school breakfast program, including through the USDA Community Eligibility Provision in the 2019-2020, 2020-2021, or 2021-2022 school year;

¯ Received a Federal Pell Grant during the current award year; or

¯ Meets the eligibility criteria for a participating provider’s existing low-income program.

There are two steps to an application. A household representative must submit an application – available to download or fill out at ACPBenefit.org and contact their service provider to sign up for an eligible plan, according to the FCC.

For qualifying Atlantic Broadband customers, the second step can be handled by visiting atlanticbb.com/acp.

“Eligible households can also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet from participating providers if they contribute more than $10 and less than $50 toward the purchase price, according to the FCC.

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