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Emergency Broadband Benefit

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About the Emergency Broadband Benefit

The Emergency Broadband Benefit will provide a discount of up to $50 per month towards broadband service for eligible households and up to $75 per month for households on qualifying Tribal lands. Eligible households can also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet from participating providers if they contribute more than $10 and less than $50 toward the purchase price. The Emergency Broadband Benefit is limited to one monthly service discount and one device discount per household.

The program ends 6 months after the pandemic ends, which will be determined by the Department of Health and Human Services, or when funds run out. More information about the program is on the FCC website.

Who Is Eligible for the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program?

This program was designed for individual households who sustained substantial loss due to the pandemic, who need broadband access. A household is eligible if a member of the household meets one of the criteria below:

  • Has an income that is at or below 135% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines or participates in certain assistance programs, such as SNAP, Medicaid, or Lifeline;
  • Approved to receive benefits under the free and reduced-price school lunch program or the school breakfast program, including through the USDA Community Eligibility Provision in the 2019-2020 or 2020-2021 school year;
  • Received a Federal Pell Grant during the current award year;
  • Experienced a substantial loss of income due to job loss or furlough since February 29, 2020 and the household had a total income in 2020 at or below $99,000 for single filers and $198,000 for joint filers;
  • Meets the eligibility criteria for a participating provider's existing low-income or COVID-19 program.

How to apply:

  • If patrons already are an ISP (internet service provider) customer, they should apply directly for the program with their provider. For many Santa Barbara County residents, the provider will be Cox or Frontier. A comprehensive list of providers is available on the FCC website.  
  • Or, if not an existing customer, apply online.
  • If unable to apply online, call 833-511-0311 for a mail-in application or print a copy, and return it along with copies of documents showing proof of eligibility to:

Emergency Broadband Support Center

P.O. Box 7081

London, KY 40742

Applications are in English or Spanish (instructions also available in 9 additional languages).

Last Updated: Sep 2, 2021
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