On December 31, 2021, the $14.2 billion Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) replaced the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program (EBBP), which helped almost 9 million households afford internet access during the pandemic.
Households that were enrolled in the EBBP automatically continued to receive their monthly benefit during a 60-day transition period starting on January 1 of this year. That transition period ended on March 1. If you have not yet moved over to the ACP program, here are the steps you need to take to stay enrolled.
What changes under the ACP and what do the former EBBP enrollees need to do to receive services under the new ACP?
The basic changes in policy between the two programs are:
- Instead of your maximum monthly benefit being $50, it will now be $30 under the ACP. Households located on Tribal lands will continue to receive up to $75/month.
- Changes in household eligibility, including participation in more federal assistance programs and having a household income at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines (it was 135% for the EBBP).
- Most EBBP households will not have to take any action to continue receiving the new $30 monthly benefit under the ACP. Those that were enrolled in the EBBP until March 1 should have been contacted by the program administrator USAC or their internet provider if any additional info or steps were required to retain benefits and given 30 days to respond. Some households will need to requalify for the ACP.
If you are looking for more information or are looking to apply to the Affordable Connectivity Program, you will need to do the following:
1. Go to ACPBenefit.org to submit an application or print out a mail-in application.
2. Contact your preferred participating provider to select a plan and have the discount applied to your bill.
More From GOBankingRates