Monett, Law. Co. Emergency Services Board sign contract for extended services

Steve Chapman

The Lawrence County Emergency Services Board signed a contract with the City of Monett on Tuesday, Aug. 20, in which the City of Monett will provide emergency and general dispatching services for the board for at least three years with an option to renew the agreement for up to two years.
Under the contract, Monett will provide the services from their 911 emergency communications dispatch facility. They will be responsible for all administrative and supervisory duties, and they will also train all personnel and ensure that there are sufficient personnel at the facility to provide adequate service. Monett is also responsible for maintaining, obtaining, repairing and replacing all equipment, with the exception of radio equipment.
The contract calls for Monett to only provide services to municipalities currently receiving emergency dispatch services from their 911 emergency communications facility, which means Aurora and Marionville are excluded.
The contract calls for the board to pay Monett $705,194 during the first year of service, $726,349.82 during the second and $748,140.31.
 Should the contract be renewed, the board will pay Monett $770,584.52 in the fourth year and $793,702.06 in the fifth year. The payments will be divided into 12 monthly installments each year.
Bonnie Witt Schulte, Monett-Lawrence County 911/Emergency Management director, said Notice of Interest (NOI) letters were sent to emergency dispatch centers in Lawrence County and the surrounding counties, but only one NOI was received.
“The board made every attempt to ensure the continuity of 9-1-1 services until such time that a new facility could be constructed,” she said. “Notice of Interest letters were sent to all surrounding 9-1-1 dispatch centers in Lawrence County and surrounding counties to request information on proposed costs for providing services for Lawrence County. Only one NOI was received and they withdrew due to the contract being for a short-term.”
Mike Palmer, board chair, said the contract will give the board time to build a new 911 emergency dispatch service center for Lawrence County. For now, they are looking to decide the criteria for an ideal location.
“At some point, we want to set the criteria that we are interested in when we begin our search,” Palmer said. “That criteria may mean communications availability, fiber optics availability; things like that.”
Palmer said the board would consider purchasing an already existing building if it meets their needs.
“I would not rule out looking at a facility,” he said. “I think it would be very difficult to find one. We want a storm-hardened facility that is able to withstand at least an F-3 tornado.”
The agreement between the board and the City of Monett takes effect on Tuesday, Oct. 1.


Lawrence County Record

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