The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) and MTA Alaska

Connecting with other people and resources is more important than ever in today's world. Internet access allows these connections to happen easier and faster than ever before, but only for individuals or businesses that can afford it. To help make the internet more affordable, and therefore more accessible, to lower-income households, the federal government launched the Affordable Connectivity Program, of which MTA Alaska has been a proud partner for many years.

What is The Affordable Connectivity Program?

Website: https://www.fcc.gov/acp

In today's ever-connected world, access to the internet is less of a privilege and more of a necessity. With inflation, broadband affordability is a major concern for American households on limited budgets. In order to improve access to broadband services, the federal government rolled out an internet program for low-income, eligible households in 2021.

This low-income program is known as the Affordable Connectivity Program, or ACP, and it formally replaced the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program, or EBBP.

How Did the ACP Work?

This assistance program is run by the Universal Service Administrative Company, or USAC, with further regulatory oversight from the Federal Communications Commission, or FCC. Working with partnered internet service providers, this program offers significant discounts, or ACP benefits, on internet services to qualifying individuals or households.

According to the official White House website for the program, eligibility criteria is based on household incomes who:

  • Are "at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines",
  • Qualify for other low-income programs, like Medicaid, Pell Grants, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), or Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations, or
  • Met the guidelines for a specific provider's low-income program.

Is ACP Shutting Down?

Due to lack of additional funding from Congress, this program will officially wind down on May 31st of 2024. Existing ACP recipients can expect the last fully funded month to occur in April and partial coverage applied to their bill in May.

While the ACP is going away, the federal government still offers the Lifeline Program, which offers financial assistance for phone services (as well as internet and bundled services) to low-income consumers. For more information on this program, please visit the FCC website.

Does MTA Alaska Support the ACP?

Since its inception, MTA Alaska has been a proud participating provider with the ACP. As such, we helped provide internet and phone services to rural, low-income Alaskans and helped connect them with ACP benefits. Customers who are enrolled into this program receive a monthly discount of up to $75 on their internet service plans in Alaska.

While this assistance may no longer be available, MTA Alaska is still dedicated to bringing high-speed internet and phone services to Alaskan homes and businesses. That is why we continually offer flexible plans to work with most budgets, including home internet that starts at $69.99/month and home phone that starts at $13.99/month.

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help households previously enrolled in the Affordable Connectivity Program.