Local Counties, Cities Could Pool Buying Power on 9-1-1 System

By: Alex Goldsmith Email
By: Alex Goldsmith Email

Ingham, Eaton, Clinton and Livingston counties as well as Lansing and East Lansing are already teaming up on a new consolidated 9-1-1 call center.

It only makes sense that they'd use that same teamwork to save money on the new phone equipment for that call center.

All of the entities in the consortium are considering buying the same phone system at the same allowing them to save by buying in bulk.

Ingham County commissioner Andy Schor expects that the county could save more than a hundred thousand dollars with the move. It also would cut down on maintenance and physical storage costs that come from having a dispatch center.

"It's better for deputies because they can cross county lines and not have to worry," said Schor. "We don't have to get a patch or anything."

"We will not need to build, create, establish a backup 9-1-1 call center," said fellow Ingham County Commissioner Debbie DeLeon.

That's because the systems would be the same, but separate with separate dispatchers working for the counties, allowing them to serve as each others backups.

The move was approved by Ingham Co. in August but has not been approved by all of the other members in the consortium. East Lansing's City Council is scheduled to take up the issue on Tuesday.

The phone system is a small part of a larger consolidation effort years in the making. The ground-breaking for a new consolidated 9-1-1 call center on Jolly Road is scheduled for the spring without a specific date released yet. It's been a long process but Schor and DeLeon are happy to see it paying dividends.

"It's a lot of pieces to drop into this puzzle," said Schor. "But I think we're getting the last few pieces in and it's looking pretty good."

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