White House Announces Reduced Internet Costs for Low-Income Households
The White House and HUD recently announced an expansion of the FCC’s Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). As part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the legislators created the ACP, which allows tens of millions of American households to reduce their internet service costs by up to $30/month (or $75/month on Tribal lands). ACP-eligible households can access a new website, https://www.whitehouse.gov/getinternet/, with details on how to sign up for the ACP and find participating internet providers in their area.
To ensure the most efficient use of those public dollars and to deliver maximum cost savings to families, the Biden administration has secured commitments from 20 leading internet providers—covering more than 80 percent of the U.S. population across urban, suburban, and rural areas—to either increase speeds or cut prices, making sure they all offer ACP-eligible households high-speed, high-quality internet plans for no more than $30 per month, which after the ACP program’s $30 discount, would make these programs free for ACP participants.
In a separate announcement, HUD has stated that ACP benefits don’t count as income for determining family rent or impact eligibility for HUD assistance. “We are deeply committed to ensuring that communities have the necessary resources to thrive, especially when it comes to accessing reliable and affordable broadband coverage. With today’s action, we are making it clear that eligible HUD households can get the financial help they need to equitably access broadband without losing access to critical HUD programs,” said Secretary Marcia L. Fudge. Households receiving HUD rental assistance qualify for ACP subsidies, but families need to enroll in the program in order to receive the benefit.
HUD is supporting the administration’s outreach efforts by providing more than 3,000 Public Housing Authorities with information about the Affordable Connectivity Program to share with their more than 3 million families; providing over 547 Tribes and Tribally Designated Housing Entities; and providing information about the ACP to Project-Based Rental Assistance owners who house more than 1 million families.