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County Talks to Bromley About Pricey Upgrade to Emergency Radios

Kenton County Administrator Joe Shriver and Tommy Thompson, Executive Director of Kenton County Emergency Communications, came to the Bromley City Council meeting on Wednesday night to update the city on the new 800 megahertz platform which the county wants to have up and running by late 2018. Shriver gave council a packet of papers, refreshing the information about the communications system. Shriver then told council that the county has been looking at the present system since 2015 and hired a consulting firm out of Texas to avoid any conflict of interest to evaluate the county's system.
 
"They told us that out of nine major infrastructure items, seven were failing or almost obsolete," Shriver said. "It would cost $5 million to update our system, and $5.6 million to migrate to the digital platform."
 
He gave a timeline of how the county wanted the system to unfold, but then Boone County and Campbell County had their systems evaluated also, and talks were held to include all three counties in the plan with the hope of better communication on an area wide basis and the hope of getting a price break on an order of at least 5500 radio units. 
 
Shriver introduced Thompson, who formerly designed radio systems, and he told council that with a digital system, the signal is either there or not there, unlike analog systems which fade. Shriver told council that the county wants 95 percent coverage on a portable radio on the hip over all three counties. There will be a special road show on September 19 from 1 to 5 p.m. at the Edgewood Senior Center to see what the radios could look like. Shriver told council that the county is picking up the cost for the tower work and the consoles and everything but the radios, which will be the responsibility of the cities.
 
Other notes:
 
Council discussed the issue of scheduling a meeting with Crescent Springs about the advance life saving (ALS) service. The contract with Crescent Springs is up in December and Mayor Donnie Jobe said it would be best to schedule a meeting in the near future so the deadline did not creep up on them.
 
Darnell Dupree, who lives in a trailer park, came to complain about his tax bill, which included bills and late charges from the year 2012 to the present. Dupree is not the first resident of the trailer park to come before council and tell them he did not receive any bills. Council allowed Dupree to pay the entire amount by the end of September without taking any action against him for late payment. He will pay the late fees and interest, but city attorney Kim Vocke waived his fees.
 
Councilwoman Gail Smith named several items the city would like to declare as surplus property, including a street sweeper, computer parts, a bicycle and miscellaneous street signs, and wanted to know if council had any other items they would like to include. Upon hearing none, she said that she will advertise the items and they will be sold by sealed bid.
 
Councilwoman Dixie Meyer asked about repainting the entrance to the city sign on Bromley-Crescent Springs Road, and Mayor Jobe told her to look into replacements because the sign is falling apart. She will also look at replacing three other city signs, and the two signs for the city building. Council did not give permission to buy them, but to look at pricing.
 
There was a glitch with insurance, because the city has a new insurance agent, and somehow the city was double-billed for a specific person. Councilwoman Nancy Kienker said she was taking care of it and it should be solved soon.
 
Finally, Gail Smith said she had a copy of an ordinance from Ft. Wright pertaining to trees, and the responsibility of the homeowner for the existing trees. She asked council members to look over the ordinance and to see if they would like to adapt it for Bromley and the trees on Main street.
 
Written by Patricia A. Scheyer, RCN contributor