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County Executive Dedicates New 911 Call Center | Community Spirit

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County Executive Dedicates New 911 Call Center
County Executive Dedicates New 911 Call Center

UPPER MARLBORO, MD – Prince George’s County Executive Jack Johnson today joined Public Safety Director Vernon Herron and several public safety officials to dedicate the new 911 Call Center in Bowie.

“When I became County Executive eight years ago, I knew that we needed to improve our public safety communications,” Johnson said.  “With the opening of this brand new facility and our new 700 megahertz radio system, we now have the best communications system in the country.”

Construction of the 40,000 square foot, $36 million facility began in March.  Officials expect to have the entire building operational by February 2011. The new facility will increase Fire/EMS and law enforcement dispatchers from 20 to 29 and also includes 32 console positions to process 911 calls. 

There will also be a computer training lab that duplicates the 911 and dispatch environment so call takers and dispatchers can train on the exact equipment they will be using. 

The new technology also includes the Automatic Vehicle Locator system that will allow dispatchers to use identify the closest emergency responders and dispatch them immediately.

“I want all of you to know that we did this for you,” Herron said addressing the Public Safety Communications staff.  “You are a first class staff and I know that many of you refused to go home during the snow storms last winter and you come to work every day knowing that you can save a life.  You deserve a facility like this to call home.”

The completion of the building will be the final step to implementing the new $80 million radio system purchased from and provided by Motorola.  This will create interoperability between police, Fire/EMS, Sheriff, Department of Corrections, municipal police and other local and regional first responders.

“I want everyone to know that Mr. Johnson is the one who made this happen,” Public Safety Communications Deputy Director Wayne McBride said.  “Not everyone can ask for $130 million for a radio system and new facility for public safety and convince people that we absolutely have to have it, but Mr. Johnson did that and I want to thank him for all that he has done to make this day possible.”