01.18.23 News Release - DOC Broadband iNEI Grants
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HISTORIC INVESTMENTS TO HELP CLOSE THE DIGITAL DIVIDE
The American Samoa Department of Commerce has awarded a total of $9,500,000 in ARPA funds to
local internet service providers in support of the territory’s efforts to respond to and prepare for
future public health emergencies like the COVID-19 pandemic.
The COVID-19 public health emergency has underscored the importance of universally available,
high-speed, reliable, and affordable broadband coverage as millions of Americans rely on internet for
work, education, healthcare, and many other essential services.
“We saw first-hand how critical broadband and internet service was, and has been, as the territory
went into lockdown as a result of the COVID-19 public health emergency.” said DOC Director Petti
Matila. “Businesses, schools, government agencies, and families across the territory relied heavily on
the internet to maintain continuity and some semblance of normalcy as we worked through the
pandemic. The staggering increase in usage brought to light the urgent need to support
improvements across the territory’s telecommunications infrastructure, and thanks to the American
Rescue Plan Act, or ARPA, we were able to secure grant funds to develop the DOC Broadband iNEI
program.” said Director Matila. The Broadband iNEI (information Network for Expansion & Inclusion)
Initiative is an island wide initiative aimed at encouraging the immediate transition to all things
The following projects were awarded Broadband iNEI Grants:
Manu’a Broadband Continuity
The American Samoa Telecommunications Authority, or ASTCA, has been awarded $2,800,000 to
support the immediate repairs and upgrades to the interisland submarine fiberoptic cable. The
project will restore services to the outer islands and add armoring and protection to the undersea
5G Network Upgrade
The American Samoa Telecommunications Authority, or ASTCA, has been awarded $3,350,000 to
support the deployment of a 5G network to achieve the goal of providing internets speeds of 100/100
Mbps to all residents.
5G Network Upgrade
BlueSky American Samoa has been awarded $3,350,000 to support the deployment of a 5G network
to achieve the goal of providing internets speeds of 100/100 Mbps to all residents.
For more information on the ARPA DOC BROADBAND iNEI PROGRAM, please contact the Department
of Commerce – Broadband Coordination Office at BCORD@doc.as.gov or follow us on Facebook at