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Josephine County libraries help improve Internet infrastructure

Riche Garza

Josephine County rural areas, including Illinois Valley and Wolf Creek, will now have improved high-speed Internet thanks to the Josephine Community Library District.

The district is submitted an application to the Federal Communications Commission and is seeking proposals from vendors to carry out this project.

In their “Internet Infrastructure Project,” the district is working with Sunny Wolf Charter School to ensure libraries and schools can access high-speed Internet at affordable rates.

"Last year, we passed the library district and now we have stable funding," said Josephine Community Library Director Kate Lasky. "We are not as concerned about fundraising, so we can focus more on service."

According to Lasky, this is a huge benefit to local residents and tax payers funding their library, because the Federal Communications Commission will reimburse 90% of the cost for the Internet Infrastructure Project to the Josephine Community Library. They do so as a way to ensure public libraries and schools have access to high speed internet.

"Having high-speed Internet available is a big deal for our residents who use computers and the Internet at the library," said Lasky. "It’s all about equitable access to information, regardless of whether you live in town or out in the country.”

The project is expected to start in June 2019 and Lasky said the Illinois Valley and Wolf Creek will have reliable high speed broadband internet by June 2020.

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