What is the Emergency Broadband Benefit program?
Bluewave Communications has announced it will be participating in the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program (EBB), a federal government program aimed at helping households struggling to pay for internet service during the coronavirus pandemic. The EBB program will provide a temporary discount of up to $50 on internet bills for households that meet income eligibility requirements.
Am I eligible for the Emergency Broadband Benefit program?
A household is eligible if one member of the household:
- Qualifies for the Lifeline program;
- Receives benefits under the free and reduced-price school lunch program or the school breakfast program, including through the USDA Community Eligibility Provision, or did so in the 2019-2020 school year;
- Received a Federal Pell Grant during the current award year; or
- Experienced a substantial loss of income since February 29, 2020 and the household had a total income in 2020 below $99,000 for single filers and $198,000 for joint filers.
There is a limit of one benefit per household per month. Eligible households may apply this discount to any of the internet tiers. Once the temporary funding program ends, participating households will be subject to the undiscounted rates and general terms and conditions at the end of the program to continue to receive service.
When can I sign up for the Emergency Broadband Benefit program?
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has not yet opened the enrollment process for eligible households, but Bluewave anticipates the program will launch no later than April 26.
How long will the Emergency Broadband Benefit program last?
This $3.2 billion program is a temporary fund established by Congress, and will be available until the funding runs out or until six months after the federal coronavirus “Emergency Period” as defined by Congress, whichever comes first.