County to buy new 911 system from Motorola

By BRENT MAZE,

The Newton County Board of Supervisors has agreed to spend about $428,000 to purchase and install a new 911 dispatching system.

The county approved a $346,733.16 bid from Jackson Communications to purchase a Motorola Solutions system. They will also purchase an emergency medical dispatch system from Priority Dispatch for $41,210, including software and hardware maintenance and training, and a $25,000 mapping system from Tri-State Mapping with a $2,500-year maintenance agreement for software and training.

Construction of cabinets is expected to cost about $1,500 with the work done by Scott Engle.

Newton County Emergency Management and 911 director Brian Taylor said they would also be purchasing chairs for the dispatchers at a cost of $279 each.

Taylor said he went over each line item with each company to make sure that any unnecessary equipment or maintenance agreements were eliminated.

“I think we have a really good system here,” Taylor said. “We started at around three quarters of a million dollars, but we’ve cut it down about as much as we can to what we need.”

Taylor said the system is expected to last at least five years, but he hopes that after five years the 911 office wouldn’t have to be completely revamped like it this time. The system would take about three months for Motorola to build and at least another month for shipping and installation.

Taylor said realistically, it will take between five to six months for the system to be build and installed. Because the board took action at Monday’s meeting, he said the new system should be in place before the current system’s support runs out in October 2018.

The board didn’t approve financing at this time. Taylor presented financing options from Motorola, ranging from 4.7 to 4.97 annual percentage rates. The board recommended getting quotes from other banks and financial institutions to seek better interest rates.

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