ACA Connects President and CEO Matthew M. Polka lauded the $3.2 billion of funding for broadband access extension contained in the COVID-19 stimulus package passed this week in Congress.
“The COVID emergency has highlighted both the value and importance of broadband connectivity and that all Americans must have access to such service during the emergency and beyond. It is for that reason that ACA Connects urged Congress in the COVID emergency legislation to direct support to help in-need individuals obtain such connectivity, and we commend Congress for adopting this approach,” Polka said in a statement.
“By providing $3.2 billion in direct support for broadband connectivity for low-income families, as well new stimulus checks and additional unemployment assistance, Congress will help Americans stay connected for the months ahead to the reliable, robust broadband connectivity that ACA Connects members and others provide,” the statement continued. “This new funding can make a significant contribution to the ongoing efforts of our members since the start of the emergency to connect, and keep connected, everyone in their communities. But it is critical that the FCC implements the law by adopting rules that facilitate participation by these smaller broadband providers, who today provide service to some 10 million households in more rural areas, many of which have been severely impacted by the COVID emergency.
“ACA Connects looks forward to working with the FCC to achieve this goal,” Polka concluded.