WOOMELANG residents are concerned their community will lag behind other centres before a National Broadband Network upgrade is delivered .
Their fears come after residents in other Wimmera towns including Haven, Minyip and Rainbow expressed concerns over issues with their internet access and connection speeds.
Yarriambiack Shire Council infrastructure and planning director James Magee said NBN Co initially intended a fixed wireless connection for Woomelang.
"Since that time, a company acting for NBN Co applied for planning permits for all the various sites throughout the shire," he said.
Internet tower sites had been approved for Hopetoun, Beulah, Brim, Warracknabeal, Minyip, Murtoa and Rupanyup.
"Then council realised the company had not applied for Woomelang," Mr Magee said.
He said council promptly asked about NBN Co's fixed wireless plans for the town.
"We got an answer fairly quickly," Mr Magee said.
"They said it was not going to be a wireless location any more because of the additional cost to connect Woomelang as a wireless service."
He said council was told there were 'additional constraints' which made Woomelang wireless connection 'unviable'. Instead, the town will be connected using satellite technology.
But Mr Magee said Woomelang residents were reluctant to accept satellite as a substitute.
"Wireless is better, and similar communities have wireless," he said.
"We want to make sure the Woomelang township doesn't miss out."
He said about 200 people in Woomelang would be affected by NBN Co's decision.
Woomelang resident Melissa Mitchell said slow internet would widen the gap between what the nation offered young families like hers, living and growing up in a regional Australian town, and those in large cities. "You can just see the community lagging further and further behind," she said.
Ms Mitchell fears satellite technology will be harder to upgrade, compared with fibre and fixed wireless services.
NBN Co did not respond to Mail-Times' calls in time to confirm or allay residents' fears.
"In some ways, it is more important for us here to have high-speed, reliable internet access because we are more remote," Ms Mitchell said.
"Having reliable internet access and high-speed internet access affects everyone, whether it's the seven-year-old on Moshi Monsters or the 90-year-old who wants to pay her bills and keep in touch with the family.
"If regional Victoria is looking more regional and remote than ever, the internet is going to be an issue. It's just further disadvantaging the
Yarriambiack Shire councillor Ray Kingston said he wanted to know why fixed wireless internet was not viable for Woomelang.
"The NBN is a really big deal for the Wimmera," he said.
"It's supposed to be the great equaliser, but situations like this make me feel like not everybody's going to be the same equal."
The NBN rollout is a big election issue and is likely to be a hot topic at tonight's Mallee Rally with election candidates in Horsham.