Excerpt from thegardenisland.com
Residents of Hawaiian homelands may soon have more options for connecting to the internet.
That’s because the state Department of Hawaiian Home Lands is lifting a decades-old exclusivity clause allowed only one internet service provider option for Hawaiian homesteaders.
Hawaii Public Radio reported the clause made Sandwich Isles Communications the only telecom provider for Hawaiian homelands since 1995.
It’s a step toward increasing digital equity for Native Hawaiians, said department Deputy Director Tyler Iokepa Gomes.
Homesteaders have had no other internet options, even after Sandwich Isles ran into legal and financial trouble in 2015 and wasn’t able to provide needed upgrades in service.
The department will receive at least $90 million in federal funds to provide high-speed internet access to homesteaders.
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