Wednesday, July 18, 2012

San Mateo cities safety dispatch trend is toward consolidation

The Daily Journal (San Mateo County)/Bill Silverfarb, 7/18/12.  "Grand jury report:  police dispatch needs consolidation." 

"Small cities in San Mateo County that operate their own police dispatch services should consider consolidating with larger cities or the county to save taxpayer money, according to a report released by the San Mateo County Civil Grand Jury yesterday.

....  The report states that the cities of San Mateo, Redwood City, Menlo Park and South San Francisco can reduce their costs by bringing in one or more partners. The savings could reach up to 20 percent in overhead alone, according to the report.  Last year, the city of Pacifica started contracting with South San Francisco for police dispatch services and is expected to save nearly $300,000 annually, according to the report. Pacifica’s average per 911 call is now $21.
Consolidated services cost less
 And, although for cost savings trend is toward consolidation, comments from San Mateo Deputy Mayor David Lim and Belmont Councilmember Corlin Feierbach should also be  considered:  Lim said "
consolidation should not be done just for cost savings". ..His concern is making sure that first responders get to their calls in a timely manner."  And Feierbach added   “Dispatchers don’t know other cities,” she wrote the Daily Journal in an email. “I don’t agree with the grand jury — we do fine on our own.”

....  The county is currently planning to build a new facility at the Circle Star office building property in San Carlos that will include additional capacity for fire, law and ambulance dispatch.  Fire and medical dispatch for the county’s 15 different fire departments is handled all at the county’s communications center."  Read Article.

Related internet example-  Life feed Fire Department incident page.

Submitted by Jim Alex

Posted by Kathy Meeh

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