By John Eggerton, Multichannel News, 1-4-21

The FCC’s Wireline Competition Bureau is seeking input on how to hand out over $3 billion in new broadband benefits created by Congress in the recently passed package of appropriations and COVID-19 aid funds.

The $3.2-billion Emergency Broadband Benefit Program was created to help low-income households access the internet, and fund equipment and service for students forced to study from home during the pandemic. The latter was impart because the FCC under Chairman Ajit Pai interpreted the E-rate subsidy statute language as excluding home service and equipment because the statute directed the subsidy to be used for classrooms not homes. Democrats argued that was too narrow a reading.

Companies participating in the new program will be reimbursed for providing discounted service and equipment (up to $50 per month and up to $75 on tribal lands) during the pandemic. » Read More