broadband

Charles Rondeau, publicdomainpictures.net

Kentucky is moving forward with an effort to bring broadband internet closer to communities throughout the state. Governor Steve Beshear signed an executive order creating the Kentucky Communications Network Authority, which will manage the open-access network Kentucky Wired. Over the next 3 years, the state plans to build 3,000 miles of fiber infrastructure at a cost of $324 million, $30 million of which will come from the state, $23.5 million from federal funds, and the remaining $270.9 million from private investment.

Kaylan Thompson, WKMS

The so-called 'AT&T bill' passed this year by the Kentucky legislature will give the company more freedom from regulations when placing lines for home phone service, which can now include broadband, says Michael Ramage, director of Murray State's Center for Telecommunications Systems Management. Kate Lochte speaks with Ramage on Sounds Good about how this may mean greater broadband connectivity for rural Kentuckians.

Matt Markgraf, WKMS

Net neutrality is back in the headlines after FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler announced his plans to present a 300-page document at a meeting later this month, which would reclassify 'broadband.' Under the current Telecommunications Act, there are multiple areas: telephone, broadcast, information. If the proposal passes, broadband would be reclassified from an information service to a telecom service. Michael Ramage, Associate Director for the Center for Telecommunications Systems Management at Murray State University, discusses the latest news, explains regulating web access as a public utility and what this might mean for consumers and communications companies on Sounds Good.

Murray State University's Office of Regional Outreach, Facebook

Murray State University, the Kentucky Council on Post-secondary Education and the Commonwealth Office of Broadband Outreach and Development are collaborating to bring free, public access, broadband internet service to counties in west Kentucky. The four river counties in westernmost Kentucky are among the most in-need of service: Ballard, Carlisle, Hickman and Fulton. On Sounds Good, MSU Regional Outreach Director Gina Winchester and Regional Outreach Coordinator Jonathan Baskin describe the effort.

Advocates for more wireless and broadband options in Kentucky will once again push a bill reforming the state's telecommunications laws—specifically, removing language that requires old-school land-line service throughout the state.

Citizens for a Digital Future unveiled the legislation today, which is sponsored by state Sen. Paul Hornback, a Republican from Shelbyville.

Wikimedia Commons

A major project to install fiber optic broadband service in western Kentucky and northwestern Tennessee is nearing its midpoint. West Kentucky and Tennessee Telecom crews have finished installation in the Graves County towns of Fancy Farm, Wingo, and Farmington, reaching more than 2,000 rural customers.

Wikimedia Commons

A national group that has pushed expanding broadband access in other southern states is now focusing on Kentucky. Citizens for a Digital Future is opening a Kentucky chapter to help advocate for these issues with lawmakers and private businesses. The group’s Kentucky director, Gary Gerdemann, says a lack of wireless options is affecting businesses and education.