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North Carolina Dems Fighting To Save Affordable Internet Program

Source: North Carolina Health News

There’s a sharp and strange partisan divide over a popular program that has made high-speed internet affordable for over 900,000 North Carolina households.

While Democrats are fighting to save the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), Republicans have remained quiet and noncommittal as to whether they would support extending it. This is especially noteworthy, as 53% of ACP beneficiaries in North Carolina live in Republican districts.

The ACP, which ran out of funding this month, saw wide adoption in North Carolina, which had the nation’s ninth-largest percentage of ACP enrollees. According to the FCC, one in five households across the state were enrolled. High-speed internet has become increasingly important in healthcare and education, as rural communities can gain access to services that may otherwise be absent from their community.

All seven of North Carolina’s Congressional Democrats co-sponsored a bill to extend the program through the end of the year, and several reaffirmed their stance in statements to various media outlets.  

Their seven Republican counterparts in the House have been noncommittal. None of them signed the extension bill — which is backed by two dozen Republicans from other states — and none of them responded to multiple messages from media outlets asking where they stand on the program’s fate.If you’re in search of financial resources, you may be eligible for Lifeline, a federal benefit that can reduce consumers’ internet bills by about $9 a month. Spectrum also offers discounted plans for some subscribers who are already Social Security beneficiaries. While neither alternative compares to the support of the ACP, they are temporary options while Congress determines the future of the impactful program.


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