On May 9, 2022, HUD’s Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary requested owners/agents and Public Housing Agencies to advise assisted residents to sign up for the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP).
Over 11.7 million low-income households have already benefitted from the ACP and its predecessor, the Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) program. The Biden administration is actively promoting the ACP and is working with HUD to encourage enrollment.
All households participating in federal housing assistance programs automatically qualify for a discount of up to $30 per month for internet service, as well as a one-time discount of up to $100 for the purchase of a device to access the internet. Households residing on qualifying Tribal Lands can receive up to $75 per month toward their monthly internet costs.
The COVID-19 pandemic made it acutely clear how much our country depends on the internet as a critical piece of infrastructure – and how many barriers lower-income folks tend to face when attempting to acquire access. Residents of HUD-assisted housing, in particular, encounter a large number of obstacles when it comes to accessing the internet, such as lower credit scores and previously unpaid utility bills that prevent enrollment altogether. Without access to the internet, residents encounter delays in processing benefits, limited access to helpful emergency aid programs, and even difficulty in applying for other assisted housing properties.
HUD encourages owners/agents of multifamily housing projects and Public Housing Agencies to share resources with their residents to help them take advantage of the ACP. A relatively simple process can lead to expanded access to important resources. Residents can apply online at acpbenefit.org or print and mail an application. Then, they contact a participating internet service provider to select an internet plan of their choice and have the discount applied.
For more information, please browse the links below:
Mini-Guide to the ACP for HUD-Assisted Communities: https://content.govdelivery.com/attachments/USHUDFHA/2022/05/06/file_attachments/2151980/3.30%20ACP%20Mini%20Guide%20-%20Formatted%20Version.pdf
Outreach Toolkit: https://www.fcc.gov/acp-consumer-outreach-toolkit
Frequently Asked Questions: https://www.fcc.gov/affordable-connectivity-program-consumer-faq
Please share these resources with your sites and your team, and remind your compliance departments and personnel that contributions from the ACP do not count as a source of income for your residents.