Franklin County panel approves contract for communications study


FARMINGTON — Franklin County commissioners voted Tuesday to enter into a contract with Communication Consulting Service Inc. of Gray to do a countywide comprehensive communications study.

The cost is $9,500. Richard Davol is president and owner of the company.

Tim Hardy, the county’s director of the Emergency Management Agency, received notice that it received a regional grant of $69,386.57 through the Department of Homeland Security, county Clerk Julie Magoon told commissioners.

The panel previously approved using $5,000 from the county’s tax-increment financing district’s emergency communications fund, if the grant was received, and the remainder of the study would be paid through the grant.

After some of the Homeland Security grant is used for other agency programs, there would be $67,886.57 left, Hardy previously said. After the cost of the study is deducted and then completed, the remaining money would be used to help implement emergency radio communications improvements countywide.

Stan Wheeler, director of the Franklin County Regional Communications Center, who was at training Tuesday and unable to attend the meeting, told commissioners on Sept. 23 that a comprehensive study of the county has never been done.

One problem is that the county’s terrain varies from mountains, hills and valleys, which causes problems with radio communications, he said.

Wheeler said four vendors were contacted, and they each came up with different recommendations on how to fix communication issues.

The consultant who would be hired could build on what those four vendors recommended and help them sift through the recommendations and come up with both short- and long-term plans to improve communications.

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