23 Million American Families Rely on Critical High-Speed Internet Program

Washington, D.C.— Today, a letter signed by a bipartisan group of 174 mayors was sent to congressional leaders urging them to quickly pass legislation to extend the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). Created as part of the 2021 Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the ACP provides a subsidy for internet access for low-income Americans, and it has become a vital lifeline to millions of households. Without urgent action by Congress, the program will soon come to an end, threatening access to the internet for the 23 million lower-income households that currently rely on the ACP. Promoting affordable access to high-speed internet has been a policy priority of the United States Conference of Mayors, and mayors will be using their shared voice to see the program extended.

The letter reads, in part:

“The Affordable Connectivity Program has been a key tool in our efforts to eliminate the digital divide in America since it was created by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law in 2021. This program itself served as a long-term replacement for the Emergency Broadband Benefit, which connected families during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Emergency Broadband Benefit crystallized for many the stark reality of the challenges presented to Americans who lack access to quality and affordable broadband and revealed a need for a long-term solution.”

The mayors go one to write:

“At this crucial time, we urge Congress to renew and extend the Affordable Connectivity Program funding in 2024 to ensure currently enrolled low-income households continue to have access to affordable high-speed internet. Extending the Affordable Connectivity Program will help close the digital divide, allow Americans to access the resources they need, and strengthen the U.S. economy to compete in the 21st Century.”

Read the full letter here.