Hawaiian Home Lands Residents May Be Out Of Luck When It Comes To Help With Broadband Bills … A federal pandemic subsidy program offers discounts to homesteaders. But the company that provides the service says it won’t participate.

The federal government is offering broadband subsidies to hundreds of thousands of low-income Hawaii residents to help keep them connected during the pandemic, but the founder of the company that provides broadband service on Hawaiian Home Lands says he won’t participate in the program.

Albert Hee, the founder of Sandwich Isles Communications Inc., told an online audience on March 10 he cannot offer subsidies to homesteaders through the Emergency Broadband Benefit program. The program is supposed to provide broadband subsidies of $75 per month to qualifying broadband subscribers on Hawaiian Home Lands.

A spokesman for the Hawaiian Homes Commission said it is still unclear whether homesteaders served by Sandwich Isles can tap the subsidy offered by the Federal Communications Commission, and the FCC did not respond to repeated inquiries about the issue.

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