Library Internet system set for upgrade

by W. Winston Skinner


Janetta Jones of Newnan uses one of the computers at the Powell Library on Hospital Road. The library system is preparing for an overhaul of its Internet services. 

People who rely on the public library’s computers are soon going to have much faster Internet service.

The Coweta County Public Library System is looking to get a new vendor for Internet service. Jimmy Bass, library system director, said the system is looking to county experts to find the best one.

Bass said he wants the new Internet service provider to be one “that the county will help vet.”

Erate, a federal program, will pay 60 percent of the cost for the new system, with the remaining 40 percent coming from the Georgia Public Library System.

The current system operates on six megabytes, and the new system will have 50 megabytes. “Our Internet service will be almost 10 times faster than now,” Bass said.

The six megabyte level was considered fast when it was installed, but technology has raced ahead. This will be “a much needed update,” Bass said. “It’s going to make a lot of people happy,” he added.

Bass said he is by no means a computer expert, which is why he turned to county officials for advice and help.

“I’m using the county IT folks to vet it, because they do this all day long. That’s their area of expertise,” he said.

“The goal is to be up and running by the middle of June,” he said.

He said there will be “a big splash when that happens” — with CPLS making sure the community knows of the better service that will be available.

Continued economic struggles for people have kept the level of usage for computers at the libraries high.

Many people use the library computers to prepare resumes or complete online job applications.

“We have people who come in who have turned off their cable and Internet service to save money,” Bass said.

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