The Chamber joins nationwide effort for extension of Affordable Connectivity Program

April 2024

The Portland Metro Chamber has joined a coalition of chambers of commerce and business organizations across the United States in backing the “Affordable Connectivity Program Extension Act.” This bipartisan initiative aims to extend the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), which provides essential support for lower-income Americans to access the internet.

In a letter addressed to the Members of the United States Congress, the signatories emphasize the critical role of internet affordability in fostering economic growth and maintaining competitiveness. The internet serves as a powerful tool for businesses, enabling them to reach new customers, deliver crucial services such as banking and healthcare, enhance productivity, and expand export opportunities. Moreover, broadband access is directly linked to economic prosperity, with studies showing its positive impact on GDP growth, job creation, and community development.

The ACP, established under the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, has already proven its effectiveness by assisting over 22.5 million American households, particularly benefiting seniors, veterans, and both rural and urban communities. However, with funding projected to be depleted by April, there is an urgent need for congressional action to ensure the continuity of this vital program.

A survey conducted in February 2024 revealed that 77% of ACP recipients fear a disruption in their internet service if funding lapses. This underscores the importance of promptly enacting the Affordable Connectivity Program Extension Act to provide certainty for program recipients and enable the private sector to leverage the benefits of increased internet adoption.

The Portland Metro Chamber stands alongside numerous other chambers of commerce and business organizations from Alabama to Wyoming in urging Congress to support the Affordable Connectivity Program Extension Act. By doing so, millions of Americans will be able to remain connected, contributing to economic prosperity and national competitiveness.

Read the full coalition letter to Congress in support of the ACP Extension Act.