Business Matters

The Role of the Affordable Connectivity Program

Internet access is crucial for a modern economy, but tens of millions of households need help to afford broadband service costs. Community Tech Network (CTN) helps families like Wilma enroll in the Affordable Connectivity Program, which offers free or discounted high-speed Internet service.

Communities are making great progress in getting qualifying households to participate, but many still need help to overcome barriers. Subscriber-level data could help us better understand those barriers.

Access to Information

As we approach the first anniversary of the Affordable Connectivity Program, it’s clear that the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to expanding internet access is working. The ACP subsidy helps eligible households pay for internet service and devices like laptops or tablets. And it is incredibly popular: households across America are enrolling at a record pace. This is true in cities and rural areas, across partisan lines, and among Democrats and Republicans.

This new Federal Communications Commission (FCC) program replaces the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program and aims to help low-income households with monthly service discounts and one-time device discounts.

Eligible households can receive a $30 monthly discount toward their internet bill ($75 on Tribal lands) and a one-time discount up to $100 for purchasing a device from participating providers. The ACP program Oklahoma benefits are limited to one monthly service discount per household and are non-transferable.

Governor Kathy Hochul is committed to closing the digital divide and ensuring all New Yorkers can afford the essential services that the Internet provides. That’s why she launched a multi-agency outreach effort to raise awareness of the ACP and encourage New York families to sign up. This is a critical step toward ensuring that everyone in the state can access broadband and the tools they need to succeed in our connected world.


As schools across the country gear up for the new school year, students should be focused on learning and homework, not worrying about whether they’ll have access to the Internet at home. However, for many households that earn too little to afford high-speed internet service plans, it is a worry they may live with every day.

The federal Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) is an important complement to investments made by states and local governments to bring new, high-speed internet networks to unserved areas of the country.

ACP provides eligible households with a monthly credit of $30 (or $75 for households on Tribal Lands) toward their internet bill and a one-time discount to purchase connected devices like a laptop or tablet. Households automatically gain eligibility if they participate in a government assistance program, including SNAP, WIC, SSI, Medicaid, TANF, and Head Start.

In addition, households participating in the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program or enrolled at a school participating in the USDA’s Community Eligibility Provision program are also eligible.

Schools are uniquely positioned to increase awareness of the ACP and support enrollment by supplying documentation of participation in these programs. EducationSuperHighway’s Affordable Connectivity Program Toolkit for Schools includes a step-by-step action plan, information on our enrollment assistance tool, templates, and customizable resources designed to help districts of all sizes promote the ACP through their communication channels and launch outreach campaigns.

Job Opportunities

In today’s world, a stable internet connection isn’t just a luxury – it’s an essential tool connecting people to jobs, schools, healthcare, and much more. However, millions of Americans struggle to afford internet service.

That’s why Optimum is proud to participate in the federal Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), which provides low-income households that qualify based on Federal Government rules a monthly discount of up to $30 per month (up to $75 for those living on Tribal Lands) towards their home broadband service.

In addition to providing free yearly data services, the Affordable Connectivity Program also helps eligible households purchase a laptop or desktop computer that will enable them to take advantage of online educational opportunities, apply for jobs, and access medical information. This is especially important in rural areas where reliable, high-speed Internet is often limited or unavailable.

As a Digital Navigator, you help residents enroll in the Affordable Connectivity Program. You will engage with families and community members through door-to-door outreach, at events, and over the phone to explain the program’s benefits.

You will work with KCHA to support activities that increase awareness and enrollment in the program and develop contacts to continue supporting families after completing their ACP application. You will also be responsible for providing culturally appropriate and relevant information.

Health Care

In the healthcare industry, internet access is now indispensable. Patients need it to fill out paper forms, complete online-only benefits applications, and make telehealth appointments with doctors who may be away for several hours (and a tank of gas). In many cases, these connections can save lives, especially for marginalized populations and those with chronic conditions.

Unfortunately, many households can’t afford the internet services they need to stay healthy. Fortunately, the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) can help these households get online, with up to $30 per month for service and up to $75 on Tribal Lands. But, the ACP needs help from healthcare institutions to spread the word and enroll patients. 

The Biden-Harris administration has secured commitments from several leading internet providers to offer ACP-eligible families a monthly high-speed internet plan for no more than $30. But this progress could be undone if the ACP’s allocated funds are depleted, as is expected by mid-2024.

Extending this vital program and ensuring more households benefit from its health-related capabilities is crucial for reducing digital divides in America. To do that, Congress should craft and pass legislation that secures funding for the ACP and establishes a long-term legal framework for broadband providers.