Emergency Broadband Benefit ProgramInformation and Resources
NDIA offers this page of EBB resources to digital inclusion practitioners and advocates intent on helping the unconnected sign up for this federal broadband subsidy. These resources are provided for digital inclusion practitioners and others supporting the outreach of EBB. Feel free to remix, adapt, and build upon this work non-commercially. Please acknowledge the work that went into your new materials by noting the source.
Please note many aspects of the EBB Program are still in the works. These resources are not meant to be exhaustive and NDIA will continue to update as new information becomes available.
Decoding the Emergency Broadband Benefit – Episode 8 of Connect This!
NDIA Hosts EBB Webinar:
The Emergency Broadband Benefit is the first significant acknowledgment by our federal government that affordability is a barrier to internet service in the home. This is an incredible first step. Next up – a permanent broadband benefit, support for digital literacy training, digital navigators and devices. Technology is woven into every aspect of our lives and our society. Digital access and use is a tool that, when used successfully by more of us, collectively strengthens our economy, health, education, social and civic participation.
The Emergency Broadband Benefit program is a provision of the Consolidated Appropriations Act slated for $3.2 billion to reimburse internet service providers (ISPs) $10 to $50 a month for providing broadband service and up to $100 for providing devices to eligible households.
The Federal Communications Commission will administer the benefit through the Universal Service Administrative Company or USAC. FCC payments will be direct to the ISP, not the household.
A household must meet one of the following criteria for eligibility:
- Be Lifeline eligible
- Eligible for an existing ISP discount broadband program
- Have children eligible for free and reduced school lunches
- Have a household member who is a Pell Grant recipient
- Have a household member who is unemployed.
- ISP participation is voluntary. Eligible households may choose among services offered by participating providers.
- Participating providers may be:
- Already-designated USAC eligible telecommunications carriers, or
- Other broadband providers meeting the requirements established by the FCC (yet to be determined).
Participating providers must certify that eligible households are not required to pay an early termination fee (if the household agrees to enter into a service contract), and will not be subject to a mandatory waiting period.
A participating ISP can also receive up to $100 reimbursement for a laptop, desktop, computer or tablet provided to an eligible household. Only one device may be reimbursed per household. The providers must certify that the household is charged not less than $10 and not more than $50 for internet service.
Emergency broadband benefit means “a monthly discount for an eligible household applied to the actual amount charged to such household, which shall be no more than the standard rate for an internet service offering and associated equipment, in an amount equal to such amount charged, but not more than $50.”
Standard rate means “the monthly retail rate for the applicable tier of broadband internet access service as of December 1, 2020, excluding any taxes or other governmental fees.”
Internet service offering means “broadband internet access service provided by such provider to a household, offered in the same manner, and on the same terms, as described in any of such provider’s offerings for broadband internet access service to such household, as on December 1, 2020.’