By Pacific Island Times News Staff
The Office of the Governor on Tuesday announced the release of its Guam Five-Year Action Plan for the future of high-speed internet. This groundbreaking effort represents a significant step forward in our island's efforts to bridge the digital divide and ensure equitable access for all Guam residents.
Informed by months of talks with community stakeholders, carriers, and telecommunication experts, the Guam Five-Year Action Plan is a living document that outlines a comprehensive strategy to improve latency and expand broadband access and affordability across the island.
With the ever-evolving nature of technology and connectivity needs, this dynamic report will serve as a roadmap for the coming years, addressing the critical issues of free wireless internet, middle-mile infrastructure improvement, affordability, and the construction of a Tier 4 Data Center to reduce latency for real-time applications.
In June, the U.S. Department of Commerce awarded Guam $156 million in Broadband, Equity, Access and Deployment (BEAD) funding to improve latency to real-time applications and increase accessibility and affordability to reliable high-speed internet for the island.
The $156 million award will be administered under the purview of the Office of Infrastructure Policy and Development, which was established in April 2022 by Executive Order 2022-11 and oversees broadband funding and reporting progress and spending to the federal government.
The Office of Infrastructure Policy and Development remains committed to partnerships with local internet service providers, community anchor institutions, private industry, and local community organizations to ensure the successful implementation of the BEAD initiatives.
"This report underscores our commitment to ensuring universal internet access for all who call Guam home as well as to our valued visitors," Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero said.
"We view it as a fundamental right, akin to access to clean water and a secure home. Through the Guam Five-Year Action Plan, we are actively working to ensure that every resident of our island can enjoy the benefits of the internet, ultimately leading to an improved quality of life for all."
"Internet connectivity is the lifeline that Guam needs for the progress of telemedicine, education, public safety, business, and tourism,” Lt. Gov. Josh Tenorio said.
“It bridges the geographic gaps, transforms data into life-saving insights, and propels commerce forward, all while safeguarding our community. In this digital age, connectivity isn't just a luxury for those who can afford it; it's a necessity that will empower us to heal, protect, and thrive," he added.