Emergency Communications Improvement Project

Objectives
  • Improve the talk capacity of the radio network
  • Improve the efficiency (Make the radio network easier to use)
  • Improve the effectiveness of the radio network (improved coverage)
  • Maintain low cost of operation
  • Implement infrastructure and facility life cycle management
Financial
  • November 2019 - Okanogan County voters authorized the Emergency Communications sales tax 2/10 of 1% with 69% voter support.
  • April 2020 - Start of the sales tax collection.
  • Revenues generated from the sales tax are utilized for the expenses associated with the operation and improvement of the emergency communications radio network.
Project Activities
  • October 2020 - Issued RFP/RFQ for Radio Engineering and Consulting Services
  • December 2020 - Dispatch Advisory Board evaluated RFP/RFQ responses
  • January 2021 - Dispatch Advisory Board issued recommendation for the RFP/RFQ response selection
  • February 2021 - Okanogan Board of Commissioners award contact to ADCOMM Engineering for Phase 1a of the project
  • February 2021 - Project Kickoff with ADCOMM Engineering
  • March 2021 through December 2021 - Stakeholder interviews/needs, coverage analysis, FCC frequency availability, review governance agreements, communications site assessment.
  • February 2022 - ADCOMM Engineering presentation of Phase 1a findings and recommendations:
    • Remaining in the VHF band and achieving the improved goals is not realistically possible.
    • Partnering with and investing in the expansion of and leveraging of an existing 700/800 Mhz radio systems is the most cost-effective way to achieve the improvement goals.