Hillsboro officials meet about options for internet

A meeting was held on Tuesday, Aug. 28 at 9:30 a.m. at Hillsboro City Hall in the council room. The meeting was required to be open, since at least two members of the Hillsboro City Council were in attendance.

Many were unaware of the meeting due to it being advertised only once on Aug. 23 on the City of Hillsboro Facebook page. The meeting was held to discuss high-speed Internet.

“We met with three people,” Hillsboro Economic Development Director Anthony Roy said. “One was from Star Point, and they manage fiber optics and operate them. He was there over the phone. And we had a gentleman from Graybar, which distributes and sells fiber optic equipment. And then the other guy was a representative of potential investors that invest in fiber networks. We knew the guy out of Graybar because he is from Wichita, but the other two we just talked about next steps. So they are just now going to put together a proposal or plan for a fiber build. Definitely nothing concrete by any means.”

Hillsboro only has a few options for Internet providers. A common complaint of Hillsboro residents is the lack of reliability and speed when it comes to the Internet.

“One of the things we would like is better options for Internet service,” Roy said. “Our biggest problem now is that we have areas in town that have fairly good Internet service. Like where I live gets very good, reliable service, but three blocks away someone may not be getting good service. So it is very spotty as to who is getting reliable service. We want everybody to have good service.”

This applies to both residential and business locations.

“As far as downtown, there is a need to have better service. I have spoken personally to several business owners downtown about their frustrations,” Roy said. “We just want to have good service [for Hillsboro] and see what our options are.”

For now, the plan is to find out what exactly the community is looking for while the three different companies design their proposals.

“We, in the near future, are probably going to be sending out a survey with the utility bills to get some information on what people want and what they expect,” Roy said. “Then we will see what the companies have to offer to meet those needs.”

For more information, please contact Hillsboro City Hall at 620-947-3162.

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