~ Members advocate $6 billion be allocated to ACP, as requested by President Biden’s emergency supplemental funding proposal ~
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Mazie K. Hirono joined the Chairs of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC), Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC), and 100 of her colleagues in writing a letter to Senate and House of Representatives leadership, urging them to include $6 billion needed to replenish the highly popular and effective Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) in any government funding package, as requested by President Biden’s Fiscal Year 2024 emergency supplemental funding proposal.
“At current enrollment rates, ACP is expected to run out of funds as soon as Spring of 2024, cutting off this critical support for millions of students, rural families, low-income households, elderly citizens, and other users,” wrote the Members. “Given today’s economy with so many jobs, services, resources, and cultural opportunities only available online, that should be unthinkable.”
Created in the 2021 Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, ACP has helped millions of American households obtain access to high speed internet. The $6 billion request would allow the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to provide free and discounted high speed internet for tens of millions of low-income households through December 2024. Without this funding, ACP will end and enrolled households will see the cost of internet service rise.
“The impact of ACP exhaustion would be especially severe in communities of color where internet access and adoption still lag. Access to affordable and reliable internet is essential for full participation in today’s 21st century economy,” continued the Members. “Therefore, lack of affordable high-speed internet will put these communities further behind.”
The full text of the letter is available here.