By SUE SUCHYTA
Sunday Times Newspapers
ALLEN PARK – The city will join other communities in the region as part of shared system for answering emergency calls.
Officials at Tuesday’s City Council meeting unanimously supported a recommendation from Police Chief Dean Tamsen to join the Southeastern Michigan 911 Alliance.
Tamsen said the current stand-alone 911 system is outdated and antique and has reached the point where repair parts no longer are available. Positron Lifeline, with service through AT&T, is the current provider.
Taylor, Southgate, Wyandotte and Redford and Huron townships currently are seeking a partnership, with the intention of adding other communities. The concept of alliance equipment sharing is to save money for each municipality within the system, organizers say.
The alliance would purchase two main servers, which will make it unnecessary for members to have their own servers. Allen Park still would receive its own 911 calls.
Tamsen said sharing technology will keep costs down and improve the quality of public safety.
Plans call for the alliance to be established for 10 years, unless extended or dissolved by its directors. Each member community would have a representative and an alternate on the board, which will decide procedural changes and how expenses will be shared.
Southeastern Michigan 911 Alliance equipment will be purchased through Plant CML and supported through Advanced Wireless Telecom. The city would need to supply three call takers and the necessary equipment to join.
Equipment cost is estimated at $115,000. The city’s Police Department has received a state grant for $116,000, with a matching requirement of $31,000, which will be used to purchase additional support equipment.
An additional $1,000 will be deposited into a reserve account for equipment maintenance. Federal forfeiture money will be used for the city’s matching money requirements and maintenance costs.
During the second year of membership, Allen Park will pay a prorated maintenance fee on the main site and an answering station maintenance cost based on the number of stations. It also will cover another $1,000 deposit into a reserve fund for equipment maintenance.
Second-year costs are estimated at $20,000.