BY JEFF CHUDZINSKI
Northland this week
CANTON – The St. Lawrence County Emergency Services Department has received further funding from the New York State Division of Homeland Security, this time to upgrade critical software for the department.
County lawmakers unanimously approved a $9,149 budget amendment to cover annual maintenance costs for the Spillman CAD software used by the department.
With the change, officials agreed to reduce appropriations for a technical equipment account while increasing appropriations for a computer software account for the department.
Officials say the funds are part of Homeland Security’s SHSP/SLETPP grant, which was passed by provincial lawmakers on August 1, 2022.
As part of the grant, the Department of Emergency Services received a grant totaling $157,910, officials say.
In other actions, lawmakers also approved a budget amendment to cover overtime and electricity costs for the Emergency Services Department.
Officials say the department has exceeded budgeted totals for overtime and electricity costs for 2023, although funds have been found in existing accounts to cover the overages.
A total of $38,000 will come from Direct Service Workers, Administration Clerical and an emergency bill, while appropriations will be increased by $28,000 to cover overtime and $10,000 to cover electricity costs.
Lawmakers also approved signing a contract with Intrado Life & Safety Solutions Corporation for system equipment and software for the backup 911 center.
Officials say the contract will allow the county to create and maintain a redundancy system for the 911 call center as emergency services undergo a planned renovation of the dispatch center in 2024.
These upgrades include technology and service upgrades at both the primary center in Canton and the backup center in Massena.
Officials say during the renovation, coordinators will have to dispatch from the backup center in Massena while the primary location in Canton is taken offline for renovations.
That temporary switch could result in no backup 911 center during the renovation period, creating the need for a redundant system to ensure “adequate and continued services to answer and dispatch 911 calls in the case of a system failure,” provincial officials said.
According to county officials, Intrado Life & Safety Solutions Corporation offers equipment and software that enables remote answering of 911 calls and remote answering of administrative lines in the event of a system failure.
The cost for the equipment is $35,981 for one year, including equipment, installation and first-year maintenance.
Maintenance for years two through seven costs $1,090, $1,101, $1,1113, $1,126, $1,138 and $1,151. The first year could be paid for with grants from the New York State Public Safety Answering Points (PSAP), officials say.
Lawmakers also approved a contract with Intrado Life & Safety Solutions Corporation for professional services to relocate, install and program telephone services at the new exchange.
That contract will cost the county $15,802, officials say.