Affordable Connectivity Program#

The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) subsidizes broadband plans for low-income households. On behalf of the Federal Communications Commission, the ACP is administered by the Universal Service Administrative Company, a nonprofit, through the Universal Service Fund.


The FCC allows households to enroll if their income is below 200% of the federal poverty guideline, or if they participate in SNAP, Medicaid, Federal Public Housing Assistance, SSI, WIC, Lifeline, Federal Housing Assistance, free or reduced school meals, Pell Grants, or Tribal-specific programs.


The ACP provides up to $30 per month, or $75 per month for households on Tribal lands. It also includes a benefit for purchasing a device, which OpenFisca US does not currently model.


How earnings affect a two-adult household’s ACP benefit#

Consider a two-adult household in California with $2,000 monthly earned income and $40 monthly broadband costs. They would be eligible for Lifeline as their income is below 200% of the poverty line.

from openfisca_us import IndividualSim
import pandas as pd
import as px

sim = IndividualSim(year=2022)
sim.add_person(name="person", employment_income=2000 * 12)
sim.add_spm_unit(members=["person", "spouse"], broadband_cost=40 * 12)

print("ACP: ", sim.calc("acp")[0] / 12)
ACP:  30.0

What if their earnings change? They remain eligible based on their income until their income reaches 200% of the poverty line. This is also the maximum income share for SNAP in California; US states cannot increase it beyond 200%.

sim.vary("employment_income", max=4000 * 12, step=120)

import as px

LABELS = dict(
    employment_income="Monthly employment income",
    acp="Monthly Affordable Connectivity Program benefit",

df = (
    / 12
)  # Per month.
fig = px.line(
    title="Affordable Connectivity Program benefit for a two-adult household in California",
fig.update_layout(xaxis_tickformat="$,", yaxis_tickformat="$,")