Fulshear's economic development corporations, in collaboration with Fulshear City Council, approved a broadband study in an effort to enhance internet options so as to recruit and retain businesses.
Fulshear EDCs brought forth and are funding the study, Fulshear Economic Development Director Angela Fritz said. The funding amount was not provided.
In a Jan. 30 presentation at the Irene Stern Community Center, Fulshear officials said they realized the importance of broadband and 5G for residents and businesses.
The presentation was given by Ken Demlow, a project manager in the fiber and broadband services practice at HR Green Inc.
A slide stated the city is taking several steps in broadband to not only gain and maintain a competitive advantage but also to do all that it can to ensure the community's needs are met.
In the first phase of what could be a multiphase broadband study, officials are fact-finding to see where the gaps and opportunities are, which will determine the next steps, according to the presentation.
"We know that broadband is a key piece of infrastructure nowadays," Fritz said. "However, it's not a utility that cities control in total like we do [with] water and wastewater."
Other phases to the broadband study could include a market assessment and community engagement as well as a policy review and recommendation, per the presentation.
At the meeting, council members came to the consensus that the goal of the study is to position city staff with the capability of negotiating with broadband providers.
For the next 90 days, city leaders will ask the community what they have and if they are happy with it, according to the presentation. Additionally, they will ask community members—individuals, businesses, schools and city departments—to test their internet speeds to understand more about their needs and wants as well as areas they are not happy with.