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The Alpena County 911 Center is set to expire

ALPENA -The current surcharge for the Alpena County 911 Center is set to expire, and if it isn't renewed while the Aug. 7 primary election, there could be changes made to the system, as then as a large drain on the county budget. The 911 center relies on a surcharge to maintain operations of the service in the county, and the revenue generated from the surcharge is needed to pay for building maintenance, equipment upgrades, and staff. The monthly surcharge is applied to landline, cell phones, wireless, and VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) providers within the county and cannot exceed $3 a month.

The surcharge for the straightway five years

If voters approve the surcharge for the straightway five years, it will allow the department to move forward into the then generation of 911 and emergency rescue innovation, which will reduce response times and allow the emergency personnel to be more prepared upon arrival to the scene.

"New advancements will allow better mapping and be able to pin-point phone calls much more accurately," Szor said. "It will as well be able to deal with text messages and video. A person could as a matter of fact upload a video of what is transpiring, and the dispatcher could see the events unfold. The video would as well be passed along to the responders so they can prepare and have a plan in place earlier they get to the scene."

The needed revenue to pay for 911

Szor said there is another option to raise the needed revenue to pay for 911, however it would be more costly to many people in the county. He said the rate of $3 is the same as in years past, and an increase of the amount is not on the horizon.

More information: Thealpenanews
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