Low-income

Commerce Chair Cantwell Releases Spectrum and National Security Act

Senate Commerce Committee Chair Maria Cantwell (D-WA) released the Spectrum and National Security Act, comprehensive legislation that will modernize the nation’s spectrum policy to protect our communications networks against foreign adversaries, restore Federal Communications Commission auction authority, secure critical broadband funding to keep Americans connected, and invest in CHIPS and Science innovation initiatives that will boost U.S. technological competitiveness. The Spectrum and National Security Act:

Second Circuit revives New York affordable broadband plan for low-income families

Overturning a federal judge’s injunction, the Second Circuit on April 26, 2024 revived a New York state law that sought to provide discounted broadband internet to low-income families.

Benton Institute Cheers Broadband Affordability Win in New York

This decision upholds an important tool for broadband deployment as well as an important principle. Low-income Americans need broadband just as much as all other consumers. Broadband gives all of us access to education, healthcare, government services, employment opportunities, and the information necessary to participate in civic discourse and to vote wisely. Today’s decision holds that FCC regulations do not interfere with the states’ ability to ensure that their residents have affordable access.

UScellular Extending Support for ACP Customers

UScellular is supporting its customers who have the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) benefit with a monthly credit to help ensure they can stay connected. ACP is a Federal Communications Commission benefit program that helps households afford the broadband they need to connect to education, careers, family, and friends. Unfortunately for millions of well-deserving Americans, Congress has not approved a budget to continue the program, and April 2024 is expected to be the last fully funded month. Starting in May 2024, UScellular is providing a $12 credit every month for 12 months on curr

Over 900,000 North Carolina households to lose affordable internet if federal funding is not renewed

Over 900,000 households in North Carolina will lose access to affordable internet at the end of April if Congress does not give more funding to the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). The program provides eligible low-income households with a discount of up to $30 per month on internet service.

Affordability, Adoption, Availability, and Equitable Access Impact FCC's Broadband Deployment Report

On March 14, 2024, the Federal Communications Commission concluded that broadband is not being deployed in a reasonable and timely fashion. Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Congress has allocated tens of billions of dollars to support broadband deployment so it may not come as a huge surprise that the FCC came to this conclusion. Approximately 24 million Americans (7% of the total U.S.

Can Smartphones Bridge the Digital Divide? The Answer Is Complicated

Aldo Soledad relies on his phone's data plan to take care of his internet needs. When it comes to living without home internet, he isn't alone. Millions of Americans are without broadband, either because of a lack of access or because they can't afford it.

National Lifeline Association Seeks $30/Month Lifeline Benefit

The National Lifeline Association (NaLA) submitted a petition to the Federal Communications Commission requesting that the FCC temporarily waive the Lifeline reimbursement amounts in the Commission’s rules until Congress allocates additional funding for the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) or passes broader legislation to reform the Universal Service Fund (USF) and pay for the ACP in an alternative manner.

Federal internet benefits at risk in Connecticut. Could a state bill fill in gaps?

Connecticut has been building its digital infrastructure to get more households online. Those efforts rely on federal funding to help the state address these gaps, particularly in places with limited access to affordable high-speed internet. But a federal program reducing monthly internet bills and providing device subsidies for lower-income households will sunset at the end of April if Congress does not renew funding.

Cox Continues Commitment to Digital Equity with Low-Cost Internet as Federal Government ACP Closes

The projected end of the federal government's ACP (Affordable Connectivity Program) will leave many low–income households looking for affordable internet options. Nearly 23 million people nationwide rely on the $30 subsidy ($75 for tribal land) to defray the cost of internet service or secure internet service for free.