Friday, April 03, 2009

Does anybody know the number for 911?...

I have a couple of friends that are having a disagreement with the local post office concerning their mail delivery. I wish them luck in getting their disagreement settled quickly and amicably. I always figured if you upset the postmaster, you could be setting yourself up for some real heartaches.

Some people you just don't want to upset. That's why I'd never make a scene and send a meal back to the kitchen in a restaurant. After insulting the chef, you might be considerably better off with the first offering instead of the second.

That being said, I think 911 dispatch is an important service, even though I've never used it. I needed to call them one time, but I couldn't remember the number.

The system is funded in part by a surcharge on land-line telephones and cell phones. Land line users currently pay 99 cents a month for the service, while cell phone users pay 50 cents a month. If you've got both, you pay twice. The cost of affluence, I guess.

As the trend moves away from land-line phones, the surcharge totals the 911 system receives has dropped, down a little over $50,000.00 last year, according to reports. And as it should, the Wayne County Council is looking at ways to replace those funds. My personal feelings would have them lean a little more toward user fees to make up any shortfalls, but that's just me, and besides, they've already decided on another route.

The Council voted at their last meeting to increase the surcharge on land-line phones to $1.53 per month. They have to vote again at their next meeting before it takes effect. That doesn't sound to bad if you say it real fast, but it means they are replacing $50,000.00 of lost revenue with a little over $200,000.00 of new revenue.

I'm sure an influx of this much money makes it easier to manage the system, but we aren't experiencing the best financial situation right now. A lot of people have lost their jobs, or had their hours reduced. While most county employees received a 2% raise, some 911 employees received a 16% raise:

Dispatch – Wireline 911 #009 - Salary Ordinance Amendment
From: To: Effective
#1164 Supervisor @ $34,923.00 #1164 Supervisor @ $35,269.00 1/1/09
Mr. Barry Ritter, Director of E911, asked Council to approve the above salary ordinance
amendment. Gary Saunders motioned approval of the request, seconded by Jeff Plasterer
and the motion passed unanimously.

Part Time Range @ Part Time Range @ 1/1/09
$11.00 to $13.69/hr $11.00 to $15.87/hr
Next, Mr. Ritter requested approval for the above change in the salary ordinance. Mr.
Saunders said this was discussed a personnel committee, and the group agreed the level of
training and experience for a part time dispatchers warrants this increase. Gary Saunders
motioned approval, seconded by Al Dillon and the motion passed unanimously.

#1350 Part Time Comm. #1350 Part Time Comm 1/1/09
Specialist @ $13.69/hr Specialist @ $15.87/hr
#1351 Part Time Comm. #1351 Part Time Comm 1/1/09
Specialist @ $13.69/hr Specialist @ $15.87/hr
#1352 Part Time Comm. #1352 Part Time Comm 1/1/09
Specialist @ $13.69/hr Specialist @ $15.87/hr
Mr. Ritter then requested approval to increase the part time range. Gary Saunders motioned
approval, seconded by Monica Burns, motioned passed unanimously.

I hope the council decides that in these trying times they need to keep our emergency services operating effectively and efficiently. I also hope they decide not to take more from the citizens than is necessary to accomplish those goals.

I also hope I don't have to call 911 for a while.



Blogger said...

We called 911 a few months ago to report a disabled vehicle on US 31 in Louisville. The operator insisted that US 31 didn't exist in Kentucky.

8:54 PM  

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