SafetyNet Wireless

Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) Wind-Down Fact Sheet

In 2021, Congress established the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, appropriating $14.2 billion. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) was tasked to develop and implement the ACP as well as ACP outreach and awareness activities.

As of January 2024, over 22 million households are enrolled and receiving the ACP monthly benefit. For more general information about the ACP, visit GetInternet.gov.

What’s happening?

Without additional funding from Congress, the allotted $14.2 billion to fund the ACP is projected to run out in April 2024 (this date is an estimate and may change). As a result, the FCC has begun taking steps to wind down the ACP, which means:

•    ACP applications and enrollments will not be processed after February 7, 2024, at 11:59 PM ET.

•    Households who have applied, been approved, and are receiving the monthly internet discount before February 8, 2024, will continue to receive their ACP benefit until ACP funds run out, as long as the household remains enrolled in the program.

•    After the ACP funds run out (projected in April 2024), households participating in the ACP will no longer receive the ACP discounts.

Important Information for Existing SafetyNet Wireless Customers

If you are an existing SafetyNet Wireless Customer receiving both Lifeline and ACP benefits you will be automatically switched to a Lifeline-only service plan by May 2024 and continue to receive Lifeline benefits. You have the option to remain on your current plan and pay the amount of the lost ACP subsidy ($30 for non-Tribal, $75 for Tribal).

If you are are an existing Safetynet Wireless customer receiving the ACP benefit only, your plan price will increase by $30 per month ($75 for those on Tribal land) beginning the month after the ACP funds run out.

All customers have the option to choose from any of our prepaid wireless plans. Please call customer service at 1-888-224-3213 to make changes to your service before May 2024.

If Congress votes to add funds to the ACP prior to the current funds running out, your service should continue without changes. You can help by emailing your local representative to stress how important this program is to you. To look up the contact information for your local representative and send an email, go to nalalifeline.org/support-acp.

What does this mean for low-income households not in the ACP?

•    Because of the wind-down of the program, the ACP will need to stop new enrollments. Starting February 8, 2024, no new enrollments will be accepted.

•    Eligible households that are not already enrolled and who wish to receive the ACP benefit should complete an application at GetInternet.gov as soon as possible to allow time for the processing of your application. Once your application is qualified, you must sign up with an internet company by February 7, 2024 at 11:59 PM ET to start receiving your ACP benefit.

•    If you qualified for the ACP but you did not sign up with an internet company before February 7, 2024 at 11:59 PM ET, then you can no longer enroll in the ACP.

How does wind-down impact enrolled ACP households?

•    Households that are enrolled in ACP will continue to receive monthly discounted internet service through the end of the ACP.

•    During the ACP wind-down period, ACP households will receive notices from their internet company about the impact of the end of the benefit on how the household’s bill and service. The notices will tell households:

(1)    that the ACP is ending,
(2)    the impact on their bill,
(3)    the date of the last bill they will receive that includes the ACP benefit, and
(4)    that they may change their service or opt-out of continuing service after the end of the ACP

•    ACP households may also switch their internet plans without penalty.

ACP households should:

•    Consistently check their emails for more information and for further updates regarding the ACP benefit. Also visit http://www.AffordableConnectivity.gov and www.fcc.gov/acp. Be sure your email address on file with Safetynet Wireless is up to date.

•    Contact your internet company for questions about how the end of the ACP will affect your monthly bill and to ask about available options.

•    Visit www.fcc.gov/acp to access answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) and other guidance about the ACP wind-down process, including what households need to know about retaining internet service after the end of the ACP.

•    Contact USAC directly for any other questions about the ACP wind-down. Households can call the ACP Support Center at 877-384-2575 for information about their benefit.

What are the important dates I should be aware of regarding the ACP wind-down?

•    February 7, 2024: This is the last day that the ACP will accept new applications and enrollments. Eligible households must be approved and enrolled with an internet company by 11:59 PM ET on February 7th to receive the ACP benefit. Starting February 8, 2024, there will be no more
enrollments into the ACP.

•    Starting late January 2024: Households that are currently receiving a monthly ACP benefit will start to receive notices from their internet providers with information about the end of the ACP benefit. This information will include the timing of the end of the program and the impact of the loss of the benefit on the household’s bill and service.

•    April 2024: The FCC anticipates existing ACP funding to run out in April 2024 if Congress does not provide additional funding. Consumers who are enrolled in the ACP will continue to receive their benefits on their internet service through April 2024. This date is an estimate and may change.