State Rep. Harry Arora: Federal assistance for broadband access ($50/month)

Posted on May 14, 2021

The American Rescue Plan of 2021, signed March 11, 2021, included $3.2 Billion in assistance for broadband access for individuals and families in need. The program went live today, Wednesday, May 12th. Details of this program, Emergency Broadband Benefit, are as below.
Eligibility criteria:
A household is eligible for this program if a member of the household meets any one of the criteria below:
– Approved to receive benefits under the free and reduced-price school lunch program or the school breakfast program

– Received a Federal Pell Grant during the current award year
– Experienced a substantial loss of income due to job loss or furlough since February 29, 2020 and the household had a total income in 2020 at or below $99,000 for single filers and $198,000 for joint filers
– Has an income that is at or below 135% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines or participates in certain assistance programs, such as SNAP, Medicaid, or Lifeline
– Meets the eligibility criteria for a participating provider’s existing low-income or COVID-19
Program Assistance amount:    
– Up to a $50/month discount on your broadband service and associated equipment rentals.
– A one-time discount of up to $100 for a laptop, tablet, or desktop computer
Application process:
To apply for this program, please click HERE. You will be asked to check eligibility and will be required to submit necessary supporting documentation.  Thereafter, you would select your current broadband provider to ensure they are participating in this program. Verizon, Optimum, and Frontier are all currently participating. For more details on the program, click HERE.
Program schedule:
Enrollment in the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program starts today, May 12th. The program will end when the fund runs out of money, or six months after the Department of Health and Human Services declares an end to the COVID-19 health emergency, whichever is sooner. Since this is a Federal program, the $3.2 BN. funding could run out soon.