Claremore Daily Progress

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June 26, 2014

E911 Trust requests continued county support

CLAREMORE — The Rogers County E911 Trust Authority’s $1.1 million budget projections for the new fiscal year will require the continued financial support of Rogers County general funds.

The trust authority was originally designed to operate independently, but has yet to gain the financial means to meet demands.

E911 Director Janet Hamilton requested $666,079 in temporary appropriations from the county to begin operations on July 1. The request was increased by approximately $350,000 from 2013-14.

Hamilton estimates a total of $994, 558 in county funds to run the center for the next year. This includes expanding her staff by four dispatchers.

Monthly expenses of $93,843 include labor, benefits, 911-phone service, building maintenance and utilities. At this time, the county general fund provides $628,234 in revenue for the center. Approximately,  $475,000 in E911 tax is collected annually. The combined funds will leave the center $22,882 short of income to meet the estimated budget, according to Hamilton.

The E911 tax account currently has a fund balance of $1 million, which could be used to fill the gap or pay for equipment.

The 2010 and 2011 revenue series bonds were used to pay for the construction of the new courthouse and the E911 center. The bonds are depleted.

There was not enough money in the bonds to pay for the Motorola radio system so I was told to add it to my budget, Hamilton said.

 One of the trustees asked what happened to the bond funds approved to pay for the equipment.

“The money was spent right,” DeLozier said.

Hamilton increased her request for funding to pay for the radio system and new software for the center.

An annual lease payment of $87,600 is required for seven years to fund the new radio system.

“I voted against setting this up in this way,” DeLozier said. He said now the system will need to be paid for from the county general fund.

The commissioners will discuss funding for the radios at the upcoming budget meetings, according to DeLozier.

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