OPINION

Letter: Stow city leaders request passage of Issue 23 on Nov. 3

Kent Weeklies
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While discussing the joining of a Regional Dispatch Center, last year’s Council decided to ask the Stow voters if they wanted to make that decision. The voters decided, yes. Issue 23 is just that – the city is asking for your permission to continue discussions on the practicability of joining a Regional Dispatch Center.

Joining a Regional Dispatch Center does not mean relocating our Fire or Police Departments. It means providing our residents with the same services they have now, but only better. The proposed center will be located just down Darrow Road at the former Weaver School.

1. The current center has 14 dispatchers for a 24/7 operation. The Regional Dispatch Center could have up to 78 dispatchers. This means more trained and qualified dispatchers to answer all of the calls. Which means better, faster, and more info to first responders.

2. State of the art new equipment. Ours is good, but reaching end-of-life expectancy. New replacement equipment will cost hundreds of thousand dollars and joining the Regional Dispatch Center will allow the city to share the cost with the other cities.

3. 24/7 supervision with a higher standard of training for dispatchers and better quality assurance.

4. Better capabilities to handle major emergencies or weather issues.

5. All of these improvements will come at no additional cost and operational costs should decrease.

6. The Police Chief, Fire Chief, Mayor and many more support issue 23.

Without the voters’ permission, the city cannot participate any further in discussions.

This is not a tax levy or a partisan issue, but an operational and a safety issue. Last year you, the voters, stated that you wanted to make the decision. Here is your opportunity - Vote Yes on Issue 23.

John Pribonic, Stow Mayor; Jamie Syx, Stow Law Director; Jim Costello, Stow Finance Director