The City of Derby wants Sedgwick County to take over its 911 services. Derby did a study and found by letting the county handle dispatching emergency calls, the city would save thousands of dollars.
During a staff meeting Tuesday, county commissioners said they would support taking over Derby's 911. The county already provides the service for almost every other community in the county. The only towns that use their own dispatch systems are Derby, Haysville, Valley Center and Sedgwick.
County Chairman Karl Peterjohn says if they are going to take over for Derby, they should ask the other communities if they want to change as well. He says it would streamline the transition process.
Derby wants the change to take place January 1, 2012. The change will cost the county about $215,000 a year. That cost would be to add five dispatchers to cover extra calls 24 hours a day seven days a week.
Public Safety Director for the county Bob Lambke says not only will the change save Derby money but it will also help streamline services. He says all citizens already pay to fund the county dispatch center. He says this would save everyone money in the long run. Lambke says part of the reason they can expand services is because of the new dispatch center. Before he says they wouldn't have had the room.
The county commission will eventually be given a formal resolution to approve taking over the 911 operations. Between now and then, Lambke says they will get the process started with Derby. He says it takes at least four months to train new dispatchers plus Derby needs to decide what kind of services it still wants to provide for citizens.