With the implementation of two new projects, The Portage County Sheriff’s Department plans to modernize public safety by encouraging inter-department communication and building a new dispatch center in old Emergency Government office space.
The Portage County Public Safety Communications Policy and Operations Board, which was approved Feb. 27 by Sheriff John Charewicz, will take the place of the Dispatch Advisory Group. The Communications Board will bring more than 50 agencies together and act as a forum to facilitate information and resolve disputes relating to the communications system, according to the bylaws of the board.
“The purpose of the board is to bring stakeholders together and share responsibility for the system,” Chief Deputy Daniel Kontos said. ”The question was, how do you get 50 people to have a voice in the system?”
Kontos said the Communications Board will be composed of a chair, five executive members, regular members and associate members. The executive members include delegates from the Sheriff’s Office communications manager, the Portage County Emergency Medical Services Association, the Portage County Fire Chief’s Association, the Village of Plover Police Department and the Portage County Sheriff’s Department.
These departments are chosen to the executive board because they are 95 percent of the dispatch system’s traffic.