OACAC offering internet assistance to low income families

OACAC offering internet assistance to low income families

Some low income Stone county families may be eligible to receive assistance to get broadband internet now until the end of the month. 

The Stone County Ozarks Area Community Action Corporation, also known as OACAC, is currently signing Stone County families up for its Affordable Connectivity Program. The ACP is a Federal Communications Commission program that helps connect families and households struggling to afford internet service. This new benefit provides a discount of up to $30 per month toward broadband service for eligible households. Eligible households can also receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet from participating providers. This project ends Thursday, Aug 31.

According to Stone County OACAC Supervisor Debbie Dance Uhrig, the funds will be provided monthly for a year. 

The Stone County OACAC office has been hosting sign up events.

According to OACAC, the ACP helps ensure that households can afford the internet they need for work, school, and to have accessibility to healthcare. A household is eligible for the assistance if the household income is at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines or if a member of the household meets certain criteria including:

– Receiving WIC or SNAP

– Receiving Medicaid

– Be participants in the free and reduced price school lunch program

– Live in public housing

– Receiving veterans pension or survivor benefits

– Received a Federal Pell Grant for the current year

– Participates in specific Tribal programs

The program is made possible through a $250,000 Department of Economic Development grant which is earmarked to help people, no matter their financial situation, throughout the State of Missouri to gain access to the internet. The grant is funded through the Digital Demonstration Projects Grant Program. 

In order to apply to receive the assistance, participants must go to www.getinternet.gov to submit an application or print out a mail-in application. After they apply, participants must then contact their preferred participating internet provider to select a plan and have the discount applied to their bill. A list of internet service providers who offer the benefit in certain areas can be found online at www.getinternet.gov.

For more information contact the OACAC Stone County Neighborhood Center at 417-272- 0588. The offer is also available to Taney County families. For more information in Taney County call the OACAC Taney County Neighborhood Center at 417-239-1882.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *