July 12, 2013 

In the world of high-speed Internet – and name recognition, for that matter – there are none better than Google.

And this monster of a tech company just might be looking at landing in Cass County.


This week, it was revealed a not-so-secret meeting took place with some of our area mayors, a rep from Google and county economic development director Melissa Freeman.

While the details of that meeting may be akin to getting details of a closed meeting, we do know that by simply even having Google in our vicinity could certainly be a positive step for this area and for finally grabbing the long-awaited high speed Internet.

The stories of Cass County broadband initiatives are long, painful and sordid.

Lawsuits still linger. Bad blood is still apparent. And ill-advised past decisions almost force a snail-like pace to future development.

In the communities around Kansas City where Google has landed, including neighboring Lee’s Summit, the provider has promised lightning-quick download speeds.

It’s probably safe to assume that the early stages, hopeful ask and eventual approval and launch of Google in this area wouldn’t be nearly as speedy.

Still, it says something that they are here.

That Commissioner Jimmy Odom and Freeman were present is a feather in each of their respective caps.

Although I am not quite sure why each commissioner wasn’t informed of the meeting, perhaps that’s not even an issue at this point.

The fact of the matter is, Google was here. And we were at least able to get in front of them.

In my understanding of our broadband needs in Cass County, it appears as though we still have much to do from an infrastructure and planning standpoint before we could ever entertain Google Fiber in our backyard.

But at least we’ve navigated an early hurdle in this distance race toward bettering our county.

A broadband system is sorely needed here. We all know that. And for just so many reasons.

We have goals and aspirations from an economic development standpoint, an educational viewpoint and a growth perspective.

If we need to beg, borrow and steal to get Google, well, then we know what to do.

Well, all except for the steal.

Let’s try to keep this round of “bring broadband to Cass County” above board and clean.

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