County approves $125,000 upgrade to 911 emergency system

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By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor

The Morgan County Board of Commissioners (BOC) unanimously approved a service agreement with Vesta to install software upgrades to the county’s 911 system. The upgrades will be installed in February 2016 and cost about $125,000. According to the new County 911 Manager, Amanda Wages, the investment will pay off, garnering about $1000 per month in savings once the new system upgrades are up and running.

According to Wages, the new software upgrades have more capabilities than the current outdated system, which is five years old, and will be more user-friendly for 911 operators. “As with any technology equipment, it goes and needs maintenance,” said Wages, who noted the company who supplied the current 911 system went out of business, which made finding parts to repair the system difficult. The new software also has TTY capabilities for the hearing impaired and the capability to allow the 911 system to receive texts, but that feature will not be offered to the public right away. “We won’t have it in February 2016 just yet, but it’s coming,” said Wages. County leaders were pleased with outcome and are looking forward to implementing the upgrades. “It’s worked out very well,” said Michael Lamar, county manager. “I think there were some skeptics in public safety at first, but that they have come around and now think we, you all, made a very wise decision.”

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