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Rosenworcel Sends Emergency Broadband Benefit Proposal to Commissioners

Acting FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel circulated her proposal for rules for the $3.2 billion emergency broadband benefit program, a news release said Monday afternoon. The proposal would allow "all types of broadband providers" to participate and require them to "deliver the qualifying broadband service to eligible households" to be reimbursed from the program.

The FCC didn't immediately comment on whether an interested ISP must be designated as an eligible telecom carrier before it can participate.

Eligible households would receive a discount of up to $50 per month, $75 for those on tribal lands, for the cost of their broadband services. Rosenworcel proposed that eligibility be determined based on whether a household member qualifies for the FCC's Lifeline program, receives free or reduced-price school meals, experienced a "substantial loss of income" since Feb. 29, 2020, received a Pell Grant, or meets the eligibility for a participating provider's existing low-income or COVID-19 program.

“As we work our way through a pandemic that has upended so much in our day-to-day life, we have been asked to migrate so many of the things we do online," Rosenworcel said in a statement. "Today I’m proud to advance a proposal to my colleagues to implement this program so we can help as many eligible households as possible."