• Kevin Elliott

Rochester Hills approves fire dispatch contract

Rochester Hills City Council on Monday, March 12, unanimously approved contracting fire emergency dispatching services with Oakland County through March of 2021 at the cost of $640,230.

Rochester Hills Fire Chief Sean Canto said the county has been providing dispatch services for Rochester Hills since 2010. Based on the level of service provided and the difficulty of establishing a communications center to handle the city's dispatching services, Canto said he recommended the city extend its current agreement with the county for an additional three years.

The contract includes an 11-percent increase in the 2018-2019 contract year, primarily due to the county hiring an additional four dispatchers, with three-percent increases for wages in 2019-2020 and 2020-2021. Additionally, Canto said the cost of the contract increases as the city of Rochester Hills experiences increases in call volumes.

"The number of calls utilized for the 2015-2018 term was based on 6,363 calls, and this current contract term of 2018-2021 is based on 6,803 calls — a seven percent increase," he said.

The price for dispatching service is set by the Oakland County Board of Commissioners. The cost per call for the 2010-2011 year was $23.22, with an average rate increase of about six percent each year. The cost per call in the 2020-2021 will be about $32.30.

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