Low-Income Telephone & Internet Support

Lifeline - Low Income Support

What is Lifeline?

Lifeline is a government program that offers qualified low-income households a discount on basic local telephone service and internet. Through this government program you could save up to $11.75 a month. The federal discount on internet
service is $9.25. The federal discount on voice only service is $5.25. The state discount on internet or voice only service is $2.50. This program can cover basic local telephone/internet service charges, plus the subscriber line charge.

Eligibility / Restrictions
Lifeline can only be used for the primary telephone line and internet in a household. You may purchase additional services available to a non-Lifeline customer. You must establish phone or internet service prior to applying for the Lifeline discount. The name on the phone bill must match the name of the household member participating on the eligible program.
How do I apply?

To apply for Lifeline, please visit www.checklifeline.org and follow the application instructions. You can also download the application form here, or you can pick up an application at the Farmers Mutual Telephone Company office.

More Information

You can find further information about Lifeline at the Universal Service Administrative Company website. Any additional questions can be answered by calling FMTC at (208) 452-2000.

What is the Affordable Connectivity Program?

The Affordable Connectivity Program is an FCC benefit program that helps ensure that households can afford the broadband they need for work, school, healthcare and more.

The Affordable Connectivity Program provides:

  • Up to $30/mo discount for broadband service; and 
  • A one-time discount of up to $100 for a laptop, desktop computer, or tablet purchased through a participating provider if the household contributes more than $10 but less than $50 toward the purchase price.

The Affordable Connectivity Program is limited to one monthly service discount and one device discount per household.

Who is Eligible?

A household is eligible if a member of the household meets one of the criteria below:

  • Has an income that is at or below 200% of the federal poverty guidelines; or
  • Participates in certain assistance programs, such as SNAP, Medicaid, Federal Public Housing Assistance, SSI, WIC, or Lifeline;
  • Participates in Tribal specific programs, such as Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance, Tribal TANF, or Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations;
  • Is approved to receive benefits under the free and reduced-price school lunch program or the school breakfast program, including through the USDA Community Eligibility Provision in the 2019-2020, 2020-2021, or 2021-2022 school year;
  • Received a Federal Pell Grant during the current award year; or
  • Meets the eligibility criteria for a participating provider’s existing low-income program.

Check out the Affordable Connectivity Program Consumer FAQ for more information about the benefit.

Two Steps to Enroll

  1. Go to https://www.affordableconnectivity.gov/  to submit an application or print out a mail-in application.
  2. Contact your preferred participating provider to select a plan and have the discount applied to your bill.

Some providers may have an alternative application that they will ask you to complete.

Eligible households must both apply for the program and contact a participating provider to select a service plan.  Available to qualified FMTC customers in Idaho and Oregon.  

Please call us at 208-452-2000 with any questions you might have.

What is the Empowering Parents Program?

The Empowering Parents Program is a State of Idaho Program funded by Federal Coronavirus Relief Funds, providing funds to pay for Internet access.

What is the purpose of Empowering Parents?

Empowering Parents provides eligible families with grant funds for use towards eligible educational services and devices to help students recover from the learning loss caused by Covid-19 pandemic. Eligible purchases include computers and technology, internet access, instructional materials, tutoring services, and therapies through approved vendors in the Empowering Parents online marketplace. 

Who’s Eligible For Funds?

All Idaho students kindergarten through grade 12 are eligible regardless of whether they attend a public school, private school or are homeschooled. 

Find out more at https://empoweringparents.idaho.gov/ and how your internet access with Farmers Mutual Telephone Company may be covered.