Clayton County public safety paging and radio system to be replaced

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By Audrey Posten, Times-Register


Clayton County plans to replace its aged public safety paging and radio system.


According to a press release issued last week, the Clayton County 911 Service Board contracted with MCM Consulting Group, Inc. in January 2022 to evaluate the existing public safety paging and radio system, which is currently at the end of its life. This project also identified the needs, improvements and opportunities for replacement of the infrastructure.


The Clayton County Board of Supervisors and 911 Service Board said the goal is to increase coverage and reliability for public safety partners.


“This radio and paging replacement project will provide the first responders of Clayton County with necessary upgrades and equipment they can count on while keeping our residents and visitors safe,” said Samantha Rumph, 911 coordinator. “Although improvements and additions have been made to the infrastructure in the past, the current systems are outdated and incompatible with one another, resulting in inconsistent coverage.”


MCM Consulting Group, Inc. worked diligently with the Clayton County project team to identify system needs for the public safety paging and radio system network, including the capability to expand coverage and improve reliability while maintaining fiscal responsibility for the residents of Clayton County.


“We are very excited to provide recommendations for necessary paging and radio system improvements to the public safety infrastructure,” said Michael McGrady, principal with MCM Consulting Group, Inc. 


According to Rumph, the project will include the replacement of radios, pagers and additional infrastructure like radio towers.


The replacement system designed by RACOM meets public safety standards for reliability and performance and will provide law enforcement, fire and emergency medical services a public safety communications network for a considerable time to come.


Through careful design and contract negotiations, Clayton County realized significant financial savings, according to the press release. The system leverages existing tower sites and one new site, forming significant improvements in paging and radio coverage for Clayton County.


“We are confident in the public safety system improvements that will be provided and pleased the plan allows us to be good stewards of the taxpayers’ dollars,” said Board of Supervisors Chairperson Ray Peterson.


Rumph stated the total cost of the emergency communications system project has yet to be determined since a few contractual options have yet to be finalized surrounding the timeline of the project. Current estimates put it between $7 million to $8 million.


“Financing this project will determine some of the timeline issues that affect pricing considerations,” she said.  


The project will be funded via bond under Essential County Purpose bonds, Rumph added. 


The project planning phase has begun and the county anticipates system completion by July 1, 2024.

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