The Duncan Banner

January 29, 2011

Local mayor shares thoughts on E-911:

Julie McKinney
The Duncan Banner

DUNCAN — I feel it is important to clear up some misconceptions that have been floating around about the reason Central High is supporting a centralized E911 Call Center.

It was voted at a special meeting of the Town Board to “support the County Commissioners for the formation of ONE 911 call center for the county.” And the reason discussed is NOT political, NOT monetary, and should NOT be construed as support for the current SCSPCA.

Stephens County can be a premier Call Center that works for ALL the taxpayers to save lives, give assistance in a timely manner, and work across all boundaries for the good of the entire community. Saving lives should encompass all jurisdictions.

Think about it. With one Call Center, there would be no delay in contacting and directing multiple agencies to YOUR home, or your family’s home, or your friend’s home. Time is critical.

And “time” seems to be the argument from some of the local communities. It has been lamented that service to Central High may be slow because of the Town Council decision. On the contrary, one Call Center will shorten the response to an emergency. One call center will be able to contact the appropriate agency(s) without having to make multiple calls with the potential risk of loss of information.

As one living in a rural community, I know the meaning of mutual aid and multiple response from our police and fire agencies. I also know that time is critical. If a 911/E911 Call Center with proper oversight is established, run by a board, or commission with no hidden agendas, we COULD be the best there is when lives are at stake!

I ask all those in the cities to look beyond their borders to assure quality service when it comes to emergency response.

Julie McKinney

Mayor, Central High