FCC Offering Emergency Broadband Benefits

Eligible households can apply for temporary broadband access benefits and money toward a computer or tablet.

Starting today, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is accepting applications for its Emergency Broadband Internet Program. The program is part of the American Rescue Plan Act passed earlier this year and will offer a credit of up to $50 a month for residential Internet connections and $100 toward the purchase of a computer or tablet. Only one monthly discount and one device discount is allowed per household.

The program is temporary. It will continue until funds are exhausted or until six months after the federal Department of Health and Human Services declares an end to the COVID-19 pandemic emergency, whichever is sooner. 

Any one of the following qualifies you for the program:

  • Income at or below 135% of Federal Poverty Guidelines
  • Enrolled in SNAP, Medicaid, Supplemental Security Income, Federal Public Housing Assistance, or Veterans and Survivors Pension Benefit
  • Substantial loss of income since February 29, 2020 (income cap: $99,000 for individuals, $198,000 for joint filers)
  • Received a federal Pell Grant this year
  • Approved for free or reduced-price school lunch/breakfast program
  • Qualified for an existing low-income or COVID-19 related program with your cable provider

You can check eligibility and apply for emergency broadband relief at https://getemergencybroadband.org. Written applications also may be submitted to the Emergency Broadband Support Center, P.O. Box 7081,  London, KY 40742. You can also apply via your current or desired broadband provider. You can look up participating providers in your area at https://getemergencybroadband.org/companies-near-me. . Both Comcast and RCN are taking part in the program. If you need assistance applying for the Emergency Broadband Benefit program, including language assistance, please contact 311 (617-666-3311).

 


For more information and regular COVID-19 updates, visit www.somervillema.gov/coronavirus and sign up for City alerts at www.somervillema.gov/Alerts. We urge you to sign up for every alert method you are able to receive: phone call, text, email. Also follow FB.com/SomervilleCity and @SomervilleCity.