Washington County Commissioners Discuss Broadband Ordinance

Washington County Commissioners discussed a broadband ordinance at their Thursday, February 11 meeting.

County Administrator Dustin Peebles explained during the meeting that the ordinance sets up the process for companies to request permits regarding broadband service.

“It will streamline it,” said Peebles.

County Administrator Peebles also reported that this ordinance is part of the Broadband Ready Community certification through the Georgia Department of Community Affairs.

“You have to have the ordinance in place before you can apply for the certification,” said Peebles.

According to the Georgia Department of Community Affairs, Oglethorpe County was the first in the state to earn the Broadband Ready Community Certification from the Georgia Department of Community Affairs in July 2019. The purpose of the Broadband Ready Community Designation is for a community to demonstrate that a local unit of government has taken steps to reduce obstacles to broadband infrastructure investment. The designation also encourages economic development and attracts technology.

A local government that has amended their comprehensive plan to include the promotion of the deployment broadband services and has adopted a model ordinance is eligible to apply for a Broadband Ready Community Designation

County Administrator Peebles explained that no vote was needed at the February meeting; notice of the ordinance would need to run in the legal organ, and Commissioners will consider the ordinance at their March meeting.