Through an agreement with the state’s 911 Department now being finalized, the dispatching center will also answer all 911 wireless calls made within the county, according to the center’s director, Thomas K. Dubas.
When the Middleton center receives a 911 call originating from a nonmember community, it will transfer the call to the local police or fire department. If the call comes from a member community, the center will perform its regular dispatch.
The sheriff will oversee the center with policies set by fire, police, and financial advisory boards composed of officials from the member communities.
The center is expected to begin dispatching for two or three of the centers by July 1, and the remaining communities within 30 to 45 days of that time, according to Dubas. He said the center will start handling wireless calls about September.
Essex Police Chief Peter Silva, the president of the Essex County Police Chiefs Association, said he is “thrilled to see the progress the sheriff is making,” in realizing the two projects.
He expressed enthusiasm for the regional dispatch center, saying “it is really going to be changing the climate of how we are doing dispatching and will provide a model for regional collaboration.
“I think we are going to be providing a much better product and saving money at the same time,” said Silva.