Warren County Fiscal Court working to get high-speed broadband to all residents

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – The Warren County Fiscal Court is working toward preparing the county to make high-speed fiber internet connections accessible to all citizens.

Internet access, something you might be taking advantage of right now.

But many in the area do not have that luxury.

“We just want it. We need it. We need it. The children need it,” said Rita Runner, a local grandmother without any internet access.

That was the pleading of a Warren County woman with no internet access.

Right now, around one third of Warren County residents are without internet accessibility in their area, according to Warren County Judge-Executive Mike Buchanon.

This is an issue the court has been working on for over 10 years, but Buchanon says the pandemic has brought the issue to the forefront of their minds.

Buchanon calling it an essential utility for every household.

Locals without internet access say the pandemic was extremely hard on children in their households trying to complete schoolwork.

“I’m sure it was frustrating to them. It was certainly frustrating for us because I really didn’t see any reason why the county could not have a better deal because there is so many children in the county that needs it,” said Runner.

Warren County Magistrate Mark Young says internet service providers can place their bid on the project and explain how they plan to do it.

Then, once the government allows the application process to begin, the county can apply for federal funds to begin work on the project.

“We need to be ready to apply for that funding, so you have to have people willing to do the work and that is what we are trying to get ready to do,” said Young.

In fact, Young does not have high-speed internet in his home.

“We don’t have service. We can’t stream movies or do anything like that so even when you say, ‘Yes I have internet.’ It is not the type of internet that is the most desirable,” said Young.

Buchanon believes the internet access project, once a bid is chosen, will be completed within two years.