28 December 2022- Governor Tom Wolf is reminding low-income Pennsylvanians to enroll in the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) to help reduce the cost of internet service.
“The Affordable Connectivity Program is another opportunity to help us close the digital divide so that all Pennsylvanians can have internet service,” said Gov. Wolf “The need for reliable, at-home internet service is essential and this program aids more households in accessing the online resources they need for work, school and health care. I urge all eligible Pennsylvanians to apply for this program today.”
The ACP, administered through the Federal Communication Commission (FCC) and local internet providers, expands broadband access and helps economically vulnerable families save money. The program provides qualifying low-income households with a discount of up to $30 per month on internet bills as well as a one-time $100 discount towards the purchase of a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet from participating providers.
“More than two million households in Pennsylvania are eligible but only 24 percent, approximately 490,000, are currently enrolled in the program,” said Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Acting Secretary Neil Weaver. “DCED joins Gov. Wolf in working to ensure that every eligible Pennsylvanian participates in the ACP and knows how to apply.”
In order to qualify, a household must meet at least one of the following:
- Income at or below 200 percent of federal poverty guidelines. Examples: for single member households this amount is $27,180 and for a family of four this amount is $55,500.
- Participation in one of several federal assistance programs such as SNAP, Medicaid, or SSI.
- Recipient of a Pell grant in the current calendar year.
- Meets the eligibility criteria for a participating provider’s existing low-income program.
Interested individuals must complete the following two steps to receive ACP benefits:
- Visit AffordableConnectivity.gov to apply or print out and mail-in a completed application.
- Once an application is approved, individuals must contact their preferred participating internet provider to select a plan and have the discount applied to their bill. Note: some internet providers might also require individuals to complete an application as well.
The ACP is limited to one monthly service discount and one device discount per household.
Various internet providers are participating in the ACP. To find out which internet service providers are offering benefits in Pennsylvania, visit the FCC’s website and click on “Pennsylvania”.
The federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Law included a total of $65 billion for broadband build-out and affordability measures. The ACP is funded with a total of $14.2 billion, and Pennsylvania is allotted approximately $71.6 million for the program.
To learn more about eligibility and how to apply for the ACP, more information can be found on the DCED website along with a fact sheet about the program.