If you’re a current subscriber, log in below. If you would like to subscribe, please click the subscribe tab above.
Username and Password Help
In a phone conversation with the Leader Tuesday, Kelley Edwards, director of the Randolph County 911 Agency, provided clarification and pointed out errors in some of the numbers published in last week’s Leader story regarding 911 fees to emergency agencies.
Specifcally, Edwards disputed the statement that the volunteer fire association is charged $56 per 911 call. The fee charged to that association is not broken down on a per-call basis and is a flat $12,000 per year. Also she said that charge for the fire association has not gone up since it was instituted two years ago, which also corrects an error in last week’s story that said the charge has increased every year.
She did confirm that there is a built-in 3 percent annual increase for the two private EMT (ambulance) companies in the county, but that increase does not apply to the fire association.
The assessment of fees to first responders was instituted in 2021 when the county’s 911 agency spent over a half million dollars to purchase and install a new radio system for dispatch use. Edwards also pointed out that having a centralized 911 dispatch system saves other entities such as the EMT services from having to employ their own dispatchers.
She also pointed out that a recently implemented state law requires the 911 agency to have in reserve enough money to operate the agency for one year. Portions of the fees have gone toward building that reserve and satisfying that state requirement.
She said the relationship between 911 and the local first responders agencies is “the best it’s ever been,” and the fees are not designed to be burdensome but to help maintain the financial stability of the system as a whole.
“We’re doing everything we can to make sure we don’t hurt anyone financially,” she said.