Nearly 400,000 households in Missouri could be at risk of losing affordable internet access

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Missouri – FCC leader Jessica Rosenworcel told Congress that the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) will stop taking new enrollments in a week.

No new applications are going to be accepted

She explained how serious it would be if Congress doesn’t keep funding this program. She showed numbers for every state, territory, and district, pointing out that around 390,938 homes in Missouri might lose cheap internet.

“The Affordable Connectivity Program is connecting millions and millions of households across the country. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law created this program, our largest-ever effort to make broadband affordable nationwide, but we now are on the brink of letting that success slip away,” said FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel. “Disconnecting millions of families from their jobs, schools, markets, and information is not the solution. We have come too far with the ACP to turn back.”

Read also: The first piece of legislation passed by the Missouri House is about education

Affordable Connectivity Program is the largest ever program of its type

The ACP is the biggest and most effective program for making the internet more affordable in the US. Almost 23 million families in different areas depend on it to help pay for the fast internet they use for education, jobs, health care, and more. It’s especially for families with low incomes who find it hard to cover their monthly internet costs.

The program will not take new members after February 8, 2024, as per its planned shutdown steps. Efforts to inform people currently using ACP about this change have started. Last week, internet companies had to start telling their ACP customers that the program might end and how it could affect their internet bills once the support stops.

After the FCC declared the last month of funding for ACP, the companies have to send at least two more warnings to users. They need to explain that the ACP is ending, the effects on their bills, and the options to either stop their service or change it once ACP support ends.

Read also: Missouri Senators propose historic bill to raise marriage age to 18

In January, it was announced that ACP funds would likely only last until April, with limited funds in May 2024. Without extra money, nearly 23 million families across the US could lose their internet connection. A group of lawmakers from both parties has proposed a law to extend the ACP with an additional $7 billion funding.

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