Aiken, S.C. (WJBF)- A new federal program will help low-income families afford broadband. Wednesday evening, representatives from the Federal Communications Commission will be on hand to help these families sign up.

It’s called the Affordable Connectivity Program. It’s something the city of Aiken is helping the FCC with by hosting an information and sign up session.

The program provides up to $30 a month towards broadband service for eligible households.
It can also provide up to $100 per household off of the purchase of a computer, laptop, or tablet.

Lyle Ishida is the Chief, Consumer Affairs and Outreach Division with the FCC. He said the program makes a big impact on low income families.

“The internet is ubiquitous now. Our Chairwoman, Jessica Rosenworcel, has a saying. Broadband is no longer nice to have. It is need to have.”

Ishida explained that to be eligible for the ACP, you must meet one of two criteria.

“Any household that earns 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Rate or below- or- not and- or has a member participating in any number of public assistance programs. I’m talking free or reduced school lunch or breakfast, Pell grant recipients, SNAP, federal housing recipients. A whole plethora of things.”

In-person sign-ups are tonight from 4 to 6 p.m. at the municipal building in Aiken. They are open to anyone who wants to learn more about the program and sign up.

Photojournalist: Will Baker.