A popular rural internet subsidy could expire in April

The FCC stopped taking requests for the $14 billion program earlier this month. Lawmakers warn an end to this program could be detrimental.

Rural Americans could lose an important internet subsidy in April if lawmakers do not take action soon.

More than 20 million households take advantage of the affordable connectivity program. It gives qualifying families $30 discounts on their internet bills.

The Land of Sky Regional Council says these discounts are key because the internet is a critical component of ag operations. The FCC stopped taking requests for the $14 billion program earlier this month. Lawmakers warn an end to this program could be detrimental.

“For many, this will mean connectivity ends. So, we would hope that providers would help us step up to the plate and offer affordability options, but our optimism is low given the cost of deployment,” said Rep. Doris Matsui

A bill had been proposed to keep funding for the program through the end of the year for $7 billion but no votes on that have been scheduled.

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