Getting courtrooms and judges' chambers hooked up with wireless networking looks to be an upgrade likely to happen in the very near future for the county courthouse in Pauls Valley.
A couple of county officials attended a weekly meeting Monday to address the issue directly with all three of Garvin County's commissioners.
Both District Judge Leah Edwards and Garvin County Court Clerk Laura Lee said this is the kind of upgrade that's been considered for some time for the third floor of the courthouse.
“We've had repeated requests from attorneys to get WiFi in the courtroom, especially in the civil cases,” Edwards said.
“It's becoming more common for courtrooms. It's something we do need to do.”
They were told by Garvin County Clerk Lori Fulks that it's really up to each county office to get its own Internet and WiFi service.
A big reason for that is the 100-year-old courthouse is not wired to provide for one service to cover the entire building.
As a result, each county officer sets the online plan that best meets the needs of their particular office.
“I have to have mine all the time,” Fulks said about the wireless online plan she has in place for the county clerk's office on the second floor.
“I can't give out a purchase order if I don't have it.”
Separate plans have apparently also been set up for such offices as the county election board, sheriff's office, assessor, district attorney and treasurer.
Edwards and Lee said what they were really looking for was some guidance on the proper way to move forward with this project.
They were told the first step is to get some quotes on adding WiFi to the courthouse's third floor, which includes the private offices of Edwards and Associate District Judge Steve Kendall, the two courtrooms they oversee and the court clerk's offices of Lee and her staff.
The hope is to also figure out a way to tie in the second floor office of Special District Judge Trisha Misak with the planned upgrade.
Assistant District Attorney Carol Dillingham suggested they look at adjusting any proposed court-related budgets for the new fiscal year to reflect the costs associated with the WiFi upgrade.
In another county item, District 2 Commissioner Gary Ayers has rotated in as the new chairman of Garvin County's commissioners. He takes over from Kenneth Holden of District 1.