VIDEO: Making a Connection

OKTIBBEHA COUNTY, Miss. (WCBI News) – If you live out in the country and you have internet service, you know sometimes your service can be slow.

Other times it can be non-existent.

In Oktibbeha County, the Board of Supervisors wants to connect homeowners and technology.

The supervisors submitted a request this week to the Mississippi Public Service Commission.

They’re asking for fiber-optic cables to be installed throughout the county so that people living in the county can have the same speed of internet as those living within city limits.

Lately, the internet service in the rural communities of Oktibbeha county has not seemed to be keeping up with the times.

“If you have a storm or any hindrance to the service, it does not allow you to work, so we’re wanting something that’s faster and full-speed,” said District 4 Supervisor, Bricklee Miller.

Some may see this installment as unnecessary.

To make this more relevant Northern District Public Service Commissioner, Brandon Presley, puts it like this.

“Rural Mississippi is suffering without high-speed internet service. It’s the electricity of the 21st century. To say that people don’t need it is like to say, when electricity came through, ‘well, why do you need electricity if you got candles?’,” said Presley.

For Miller’s district, that’s at least 466 homes.

Reaching residents in other parts of the county could increase service to thousands of home owners.

“There’s over ten-thousand homes outside the city limits, and we’re definitely looking for any opportunity to grow that service, because consumers want that,” said Miller. “We have the statistics; we have the maps. We have the consolidation of numbers; we have the areas of growth. We’re just wanting those providers to come in and seriously consider Oktibbeha County as an option.”

Presley says high-speed internet is the baseline of modern society, and we as a state need to keep up with the rest of the nation.

“The digital economy is not getting slower; it’s getting faster. Bringing internet service to the rural parts of Mississippi, it’s not just about Facebook; it’s about education. It’s about economic development. It’s about making sure that rural children on the dirt and dusty roads of our state have the same opportunity as children living in our big cities. That’s why it’s a top priority for me,” said Presley.

This is not a done deal, because all the supervisors can do is ask for help.

Then its up to the Public Service Commission to help work out a plan for connecting people and information.

Categories: Local News

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