Edina, Minn., March 11, 2022 – The City of Edina is sponsoring free high-speed internet for income-qualified residents through Comcast’s Internet Essentials program until the end of December 2022. This benefit is made possible using up to $500,000 of the City’s allocated federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding, a total of more than $4.9 million designated for providing pandemic relief and boosting the local economy.
The City has been accepting applicants for the program since late December 2021, and well over 100 residents have been enrolled in the first couple of months. However, Affordable Housing Development Manager Stephanie Hawkinson wants the community to know there is still space available for more residents to apply.
“The program currently has participants from every area of Edina, but we have the capacity for more applications. Whether a resident is seeking ways to reduce household expenses or doesn’t currently have internet service, we encourage them to apply and start taking advantage of this benefit while it is available.”
All residents who live in one of the City’s affordable housing units are eligible to apply. In addition, other residents are encouraged to apply if they meet all the following requirements:
- Live in Edina
- 18 years of age or older
- Have a household income that does not exceed 80 percent of the area median income for Hennepin County (For example, for a family of four, this is $83,920 in household income for the year; limits will change based on household size)
“It is an easy two-step process to enroll,” said Annie Coyle, a consultant working with the City of Edina to help implement ARPA programs. “The first step is to complete a quick application online at BetterTogetherEdina.org or at City Hall. Then, once your application is approved by City staff -- which usually takes one to two business days -- the second step is to call Comcast and activate your service using a unique access code provided to you by the City.”
Comcast will mail the necessary equipment to the resident’s home, typically providing internet in about one week from the point of contact. The funding is expected to support approximately 2,100 households (at a cost of $9.95 per month), and applications will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis until capacity is reached.
For more information, visit BetterTogetherEdina.org/arpa-free-internet or contact Affordable Housing Development Manager Stephanie Hawkinson at 952-833-9578 or shawkinson@EdinaMN.gov.