Lansing, MI - Eligible Michiganders may qualify for monthly assistance toward paying their monthly home internet bill under the federal Affordable Connectivity Program, and the Michigan Public Service Commission is sharing information to make it easy to determine your eligibility and sign up for the benefit.
The Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) is a $14.2 billion program that succeeds the previous Emergency Broadband Benefit program. Through the ACP, eligible households can receive up to $30 off their monthly broadband bill — $75 for those living on qualifying tribal lands.
The transition period between the EBB and the new ACP ends March 1, so it’s important for existing beneficiaries to take steps to ensure that they’ll continue to receive the benefit. And it’s important to note that under the new ACP, the monthly amount of the benefit drops from $50 to $30 but remains at $75 for those on qualifying Tribal lands. Participating broadband providers also may offer discounts on internet-enabled devices such as tablet computers; see your provider for details.
Here's how to determine your eligibility and, if you qualify, apply for the benefit:
Am I eligible?
One ACP discount is available per eligible household. A household is eligible if one member of the households meets one or more of the following criteria:
- An income at or below 200% of the federal poverty guidelines ($36,620 for two people, $55,500 for a four-person household, for example).
- Participates in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Medicaid, Federal Public Housing Assistance, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), or the Lifeline phone or broadband benefit.
- Participates in Tribal programs such as Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance, Tribal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), or a Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations.
- Received a Federal Pell Grant during the current award year.
- Meets eligibility requirements for a participating broadband provider’s existing low-income program.
How do I sign up?
Most Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) participants who were enrolled by Dec. 31, 2021, will automatically be enrolled in the new Affordable Connectivity Program and will not have to take additional steps to receive the ACP benefit.
That does not apply to participants who received the EBB because of a temporary loss of income related to the COVID-19 pandemic or who were participating in a COVID-19 program. Participants in this category were notified by their broadband provider or the Universal Service Administrative Co. in January of the steps they’ll need to take to recertify their eligibility before March 1.
If you’re unsure of your status, contact your broadband provider to verify whether you’ll continue to receive the ACP benefit after March 1 or need to reapply.
If you’re new to the Affordable Connectivity Program, there are three ways to apply:
- Go to the Affordable Connectivity Plan website and apply online.
- Print an application from that site, along with a household worksheet. Fill out both and mail them to ACP Support Center, PO Box 7081, London, KY 40742.
- Contact your internet company to see if they participate in the ACP, or find a participating provider using the ACP online search tool or the FCC’s list of Michigan ACP providers.
If you are currently a Lifeline phone or broadband benefit subscriber, you may not need to reapply. Contact your provider for more information.