Mound Bayou Telephone & Communications (MBTC), through the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) Lifeline Assistance Program, provides a cost reduction benefit on residential broadband and telephone services. You may qualify for the Lifeline Program if you or a member of your household participates in any of the following federal programs:
· Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (Food Stamps/SNAP)
· Federal Public Housing Assistance (Section 8 FPHA)
· Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
· Veterans Pension or Survivors Pension
· OR you may qualify if your total household income is at or below 135% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines (see table below). [47 C.F.R. §54.409 (b)]
The current telephone service benefit is $5.25 for qualifying customers. On December 1, 2021, the telephone service benefit will disappear. Participants who subscribe to a broadband service that meets the minimum broadband standards will receive a $9.25 benefit each month. For this higher level of assistance, the FCC requires the Lifeline recipient to have broadband speeds of at least 25 Mbps downstream and 3 Mbps upstream. Exceptions to this minimum standard exist depending on the carrier’s service offerings and the broadband speeds available at the residence.
MBTC customers may apply for Lifeline Assistance online using the Consumer Portal. Begin this process by visiting https://nationalverifier.servicenowservices.com/lifeline. Applicants may come by the MBTC office to receive help in completing a paper application which must be mailed to the Universal Service Administration Company. A Lifeline Assistance application is available at the below link. If someone you live with is already receiving a Lifeline benefit, you will be required to complete the Household Worksheet as well.
*Lifeline is a federal benefit; only one Lifeline service is available per household economic unit; a household cannot receive benefits from multiple providers such as a wireline and wireless services; a household is defined for Lifeline eligibility as any individual or group of individuals who live together at the same address and share their income and expenses (economic unit); and Lifeline is a non-transferable benefit. Violation of the one per household rule requirement would constitute a violation of the FCC's rules and would result in the consumer's de-enrollment from the program, and potentially, prosecution by the United States government.