The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

January 2, 2013

Joplin, county board discuss plan to consolidate emergency dispatching

By Susan Redden

CARTHAGE, Mo. — The Jasper County Emergency Services Board  today endorsed a consolidation proposal that would result in a single dispatching point for Jasper County’s two largest emergency dispatching services.

The proposal was outlined by Lane Roberts, Joplin police chief, during a special meeting of the county board. While consolidation would result in savings for the two agencies, Roberts said the primary benefit would be better services for residents who need emergency services and the agencies that provide them.

The plan proposes a contractual relationship between the city and the county board, under which the county board would contract with Joplin for dispatch services. The operation would take place at the larger county emergency dispatch center. The two operating systems would be merged and the Joplin center would be maintained as a backup, Roberts said.

County board members authorized representatives of the county board to begin negotiations toward a consolidation proposal, and Roberts said he will ask the Joplin City Council to grant city representatives the same authority.