FCC Adds Broadband to Free Government Cell Phone Program

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CheapInternet.com applauds FCC's decision to offer Lifeline internet, a low-cost, high-speed broadband service for low income Americans.

Broadband has gone from being a luxury to being a necessity. This program is exactly what low income Americans need to succeed.

They’ve been looking into it, studying it, and debating it for years. But now the Federal Communications Commission has finally approved a cheap internet-for-the-poor program similar to Lifeline, its existing free government cell phone program.

“Millions of low income Americans have been waiting for this,” Mark Henry, editor of CheapInternet.com said. “Lifeline internet is going to make it a lot easier for low-income adults to get jobs and a lot easier for poor children to succeed in school.”

Participants in the program, officially named Connect America, will be required to pay just $10 per month for high-speed broadband service. But the program is so closely allied with the Lifeline free government cell phone program that Henry expects the monthly fee to be eliminated in the future.

According to FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, they intend to fund a $25 million pilot program by cracking down on fraud in the Lifeline phone program and using the savings to pay for the new benefits. Genachowski says they have already begun auditing Lifeline phone vendors to ferret out fraud and the effort has so far uncovered almost 270,000 fraudulent subscriptions in 12 states.

The FCC Chairman predicts that the changes will save as much as $2 billion over the next few years, far more than is needed to fund the beginnings of the cheap internet program.

“Broadband has gone from being a luxury to being a necessity,” Henry added. “This program is exactly what low income Americans need to succeed.”

To qualify for Lifeline’s free government cell phone or the new cheap internet program, you must already participate in any one of a number of other government aid programs, such as the National School Lunch Program, food stamps (SNAP), public housing assistance, Medicaid, Section 8 housing, Supplemental Security Income, various Home Energy Assistance Programs, and other programs. You can also qualify if your household income is no more than 135% of federal poverty guidelines (and as much as 150% in some states).

“Cheap internet today. Free internet tomorrow,” Henry enthused. “It will pay for itself a thousand times over.”

CHEAPlNTERNET.COM is dedicated to providing the general public with information about all the new affordable or free broadband internet programs for low-income Americans.

FREEGOVERNMENTCELLPHONES.NET is the leading authority on the FCC's Lifeline subsidized phone service program as it applies to free cell phones.

For inquiries or further information on the Lifeline internet and cell phone programs, contact:

Mark Henry


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