Emergency Telephone System Board approves reimbursing municipalities more than $630,000 for answering 911 calls

July 24, 2019

Emergency Telephone System Board approves reimbursing municipalities more than $630,000 for answering 911 calls 

WOOD RIVER — Officials passed a resolution Wednesday approving reimbursements for more than $630,000 to go to Madison County’s 911 call centers.

The Emergency Telephone System Board voted to pay $630,927 in reimbursement costs for the period of Jan. 1 to June 30. In May, the ETSB approved the bi-annual reimbursement rate of $13 per call.

In 2018, Madison County Public Safety Answering Points, PSAPs or 911 call centers, received 119,778 calls. Since Jan. 1, the PSAP’s answered 56,678 calls.

Officials began talking about the reimbursement last year.

ETSB Chairman Robert Rizzi Jr. said since the inception of 911 in Madison County, local municipalities/law enforcement agencies with PSAPs, paid personnel costs and Madison County 911 paid for equipment and training.

“The local departments have born that expense,” Rizzi said. “We wanted to help offset some of those costs that we are responsible for covering.”

There are currently 15 PSAPs, which includes a line at the 911 office. The submitted consolidation plan, which is state mandated, will bring the number to eight.

Rizzi said the reimbursement isn’t a full reimbursement, but what ETSB calculated would cover for 911 calls.

The board determined the reimbursement rate after conducting a study on the average time spent answering 911 calls by a telecommunicator. The reimbursement will paid from the monies it receives from its 911 emergency telephone surcharge, which is around $3.6 million annually.

The reimbursements to be paid for the number of calls to the municipalities are:

  • Alton —   9,183 calls   — $119,379
  • Bethalto — 1,452 calls — $18,876
  • Collinsville — 4,726 —$61,438
  • Edwardsville — 3,496 — $45,448
  • Glen Carbon — 3,514 — $45,682
  • Granite City — 8,157 — $106,041
  • Highland —1,359 — $17,667
  • Madison — 1,906 — $24,778
  • Pontoon Beach — 1,768 — $22,984
  • Troy — 1,795 — $23,335
  • Venice — 491— $6,383
  • Wood River— 5,173— $67,249
  • Madison County Sheriff’s Department — 13,203 — $65,672, which is $105,887 less for position currently funded
  • Southern Illinois University Edwardsville — 455 — $5,915

County Board member Tom McRae, who also serves on ETSB, asked where the reimbursement to the municipalities would go.

“Will it go into their general fund?” McRae asked.

Rizzi said since the money had already been spent the municipality could place it wherever it wanted. He said he believes municipalities will use it as intended — to cover 911 costs.

The Public Safety Committee will vote Aug. 12 and the County Board will vote Aug. 21 on the reimbursement rates.

In other action, the board voted to renew its annual maintenance contract for its New World Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) system with Tyler Technologies, Inc. of Dallas, Texas for $173,127 and approved adding Pontoon Beach, Madison and Venice to the system for a cost of $130,520. The New World CAD System is a single/multi-jurisdictional dispatching and records management system.

The board also welcomed its newest member, Madison County retired Associate Judge Ellar Duff. Madison County Board Chairman Kurt Prenzler appointed Duff to replace Madison County Sheriff’s Department captain Marc McLemore

Duff of Alton said she served 24 years as an associate judge and starting in 2011, she began serving as a professional volunteer.

“I enjoy serving my community,” she said. “I’m looking forward to serving on this board.”

Duff became first woman to serve on ETSB.