Compiled by Diane Holst, Iowans For Accountability (IFA

SECC911 Highlights May 2004-June2010 Milestones / Instances
Jail 29.7 million
Police Station 13.75 million
County invitation to consolidate
1st re 4.6 savings over 20 years
The study urges the departments to draft an intergovernmental agreement.

6 Year History of the Scott County Emergency
Communications Center - aka SECC911 - via articles in
the Quad City Times
Source Link to Quad
City Times articles
County sent a letter to Davenport Mayor on 5/21/04, asking Davenport to
join in the creation of a Public Safety Authority. They want members to be
from a special committee that has been exploring consolidation of
government services.
Bettendorf, Davenport and the County agree to pay 1/3 each of the
consolidation study.
Comment from Linda Frederiksen, executive director of Medic EMS - Her
board of directors also planned to approach the idea of a merger with
caution. Medic ambulances are the only ones in the county that transfer
patients among hospitals, nursing homes and other institutions and answer
911 calls. The service is supported by user fees and not tax money like the
other emergency services.
Discussion of the possible merger of emergency dispatch services and other
operations of local governments started last year as Bettendorf, Davenport
and Scott County all had to absorb costs in state aid approved by the
City and county governments approve $103,000.00 study by CTA
Communications. Davenport's share of the cost is not to exceed $77,470.00.
The entire cost is expected to be covered by grants from the Riverboat
Development Authority, Scott County Regional Authority and the state.
Dispatcher count first mentioned; Davenport 22, Bettendorf 10, Scott County
14, Medic 9.
Consolidation study by CTA Communications to be coordinated by Bi-State
Regional Commission, Rock Island
In June, Scott County agreed to modify its warehouse on Tremont Avenue in
northern Davenport to include space for a consolidated dispatch center.
Officials noted that if the center concept is not approved, the area could be
flexible storage space.
1st that dispatch center would be in
existing Tremont warehouse
At the same summit in December, Bettendorf and Medic EMS officials both
expressed apprehension about the possible merger with davenport.
Davenport has the largest call load and the most dispatchers, 22, but also
works off an antiquated computer system. the system used by Bettendorf
and Scott County is more up-to-date.
A Virginia consulting firm has found that a consolidated communications
center for emergency responders in Scott County could save 4.6 million over
20 years, but area officials remain skeptical of the idea.
Scott County Sheriff Dennis Conard said he wants to know whether the
departments would buy a new radio system that all of them could use or
modify their existing ones to share communications--a complicated task.
If a new center is built, the sheriff said it likely would go in the Davenport
Public Works Building or the Scott County storage building on Tremont
Avenue in Davenport.
2nd that dispatch center would be in
existing Tremont warehouse
Comment from Bettendorf Police Chief, Phil Redington, he said one proposal
to pay for the center and more staff would be a county-wide tax levy and 911
1st that SECC would be paid for by
special levy & 911 surcharge
Davenport's new police station slated to open later this year will be full of the
latest, state-of-the-art equipment. What it won't have, however, is a radio

Culver signed 28E legislation 5/14/07

Headline read Consolidated dispatching plan might get grant help

An accurate cost estimate should be available after an ongoing radio study
One catch is that consolidated dispatch remains a goal, not a reality, and the
department now must spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on design and
equipment to create a temporary dispatch center adjacent to the Scott
county Sheriff's Department radio room.
"It wasn't until late last fall that we came to the resolution of where the
temporary site would be,' said Dee Bruemmer, public works director and key
member of the group working on the new police station project. "It made the
most sense to move it to Scott County."
Dav temp center must be functional by July 1, 2007 and has $500,000 set
aside in the budget to get up and running--eventually will become the new
consolidated dispatch center's emergency backup.
1st re Dav Temp locating in county
courthouse basement and it
becoming the future backup to a
County consolidated dispatch
Bladel pointed out that adding a dispatch center to the new station would
have cost a little more than $1 million and would not be adequate to handle
consolidated dispatching.
"We carved it out (of the new station) which allowed us to save one-million
plus and are holding (the money) in reserve to help pay for consolidated
dispatch," he said. "It is a conscious decision to help lower costs of the new
building and to set aside money for the future."
States $1 mil held in reserve from
the police station.
Consolidated hurdles mentioned; state legislation must pass to fund and
operate consolidated dispatching and then the county and cities must pass an
intergovernmental agreement.
28E to form the Intergovernmental
Agreement and 29C to levy the tax
Geographic Information System (GIS). Board voted 3/8/07 to approve 2.5
million project and $703,660 consulting firm
3.2 mil for the GIS mapping.
Separate debt service for this.
Space for the city's dispatch center will be provided in the lower level of the
Scott County Courthouse. "This will be an interim operation until a possible
new integrated center can be built," said Dave donovan, the county's director
of facility and support services.
2nd re Dav Temp locating in the
county courthouse
That permanent facility could be constructed in the next several years and
the temporary center would then serve as a back-up facility, Donovan
2nd re Dav temp becoming future
backup to a County consolidated
Scott County's Emergency Management Agency was in this county space, but
it was moved to Bettendorf to make room for the Davenport's center.
Some 650 square feet of space freed up the courthouse will be used by
Davenport, which plans to install new radio consoles and computer
Courthouse will be the SECC backup
Scott County Administrator Ray Wierson--it would still be two or three years
before a permanent center can be built. A potential site Is on city property of
46th and Tremont.
1st hint of it being a new building at
46th and Tremont, instead of the
existing warehouse
Both Davenport and Scott County need a new 911 switch for the emergency
system, Donovan told supervisors, noting that costly device also is something
that both governments could jointly purchase and operate.
"This is an exciting new venture for our community and will provide savings
for all taxpayers," said Scott County Administrator Ray Wierson, a major
force promoting the consolidated legislation. If all goes well, the joint
dispatch system could be in place by Jan. 1, 2009, he said.
City Administrator Craig Malin said the next step is to complete a study of all
the potential participants' radio systems.
In the meantime, Davenport will spend $500,000 to create a temporary
dispatch center in the Scott county Courthouse to be used until the
consolidated system comes on line.
This becomes a 10 year long term
debt for $888,156.00,
That Davenport temporary radio room--which goes on line June 2007--will
eventually become the new consolidated dispatch center's emergency
3rd re Dav Temp becoming backup
for future consolidated
Davenport applied for COPS 2007 Technology Program grant--$2.59 million,
which requires $863,000 in local matching funds.
1st mention of 2.59 grant. $863K
matching funds to get a 2.59 mil
Several Davenport aldermen expressed concern about making sure the other
entities--Scott County, Medic-EMS and potentially the city of Bettendorf--
pony up their fair share of the match.
It is expected that under the terms of the intergovernmental agreement
creating consolidated dispatch, a governing structure with representatives
from all stakeholders will be created to oversee funding and operations,
Wierson said. Also, legislation recently passed by the Iowa General Assembly
allows a countywide levy to be assessed to fund the program. Wierson said
levy money will pay for the match.
The entire start-up cost for consolidated dispatching has not been nailed
down yet, but the $3 million in federal grant money combined with local
match is a "significant portion," Bladel said.
County signs $199,899.71 contract with Microsoft for GIS system SW
County and Davenport to share in 911 switch cost, $95,306.22
board of supervisors to vote on the 28E 11/15/07.
2nd re 4.6 mil savings/20 yrs.
The county has received $2.6 million for consolidated dispatch
the county is providing the location in the courthouse for Davenport's
temporary dispatch center (an area that will eventually be the consolidated
center's emergency backup).
4th re Dav Temp becoming backup
for future consolidated
Davenport has received a U.S. Department of Justice grant totally $2.589
million that will be used to move consolidated dispatch forward, Police Chief
Mike Bladel said.
2nd mention of 2.59 grant. $863K
match no longer mentioned.
Iowa has received $11 million for radio equipment from the Depart of
Homeland Security, with about $8 million to be distributed to local
communities. Communities must have a consolidated dispatching center to
be eligible.
1st hint of DHS grant. County never
got any of this.
Scott County already has received a $2.6 million federal grant for equipping
the consolidated dispatching center.
3rd mention of 2.59 grant. Grant
recipient now called Scott County.
This is the same Grant from June
that Davenport received.
Regardless of whether Bettendorf participates, property owners there and
throughout Scott County will be assessed an estimated 53 center per $1,000
assess valuation for the consolidated service.
1st mention of 53 cents per
One specific that has not been addressed is exactly how much the system will
cost taxpayers. "To me, it's difficult to sign an agreement without knowing
the financial implications," said Alderman Tim Stecker, At-Large
Scott County Emergency Management Commission votes on 28E. Only the
Maysville Fire Chief Scott Rosenfeldt cast a dissenting vote.
28E that the EMA approved had a handful of changes from the earlier draft.
The dispatchers employed by Davenport, Bettendorf and Scott county would
be employed by the SECC with their original start dates, sick days and
vacation. A Volunteer ambulance representative would be on the SECC's
technical advisory committee. Lastly, how the SECC budget will be set for
repayment of the bonds used for construction of the dispatching center.
Davenport is a charter city, allowing
the bond to be passed by Davenport
aldermen approval. Bond is then
charged back to the SECC and is a
component of the special property
tax levy.
Medic will co-locate at the SECC and determine within 30 months whether to
fully consolidate. If medic consolidates, the Medic dispatchers will be
absorbed under the same terms as the other dispatchers, according to the
This has the potential of nine (9)
additional employees for the SECC
Proponents say the new system will result in state-of-the-art equipment, a
cost savings of $4.6 million over 20 years and increased levels of service.
Concern about consolidating dispatch is not as heightened with Medic EMS
dispatchers, Linda Frederiksen, the agency's executive director, said. "Medic
will co-locate at the SECC and has 30 months to determine whether
consolidation is suitable for the nonprofit agency. Medic has nine full-time
dispatchers and six working part time. "We are simply going to pick up our
operation and set it down at the consolidated center," she said. "They are
probably not going to expect the same level of concerns."
She is worried about software compatibility and training for dispatchers to
ensure billing information is received.
Regardless of whether Bettendorf participates, property owners there and
throughout Scott County will be assessed an estimated 53 center per $1,000
assess valuation for the consolidated service.
2nd mention of 53 cents per
Scott County Administrator Ray Wierson called the opposition to consolidated
dispatch a "fear of the unknown." he believes the time is right to merge
because $2.6 million in federal grants is available for the new center. "The
federal government and everybody are seeing the need for consolidated
4th mention of 2.59 grant. $863K
match no longer mentioned.
The long-planned consolidated dispatching center would be built in north
Davenport and begin operations in 2010
1st statement that SECC will be built
in North Davenport
The SECC will have its own levy. Property owners throughout Scott County
will be assessed an estimated 53 cents per $1,000 assessed valuation for the
consolidated service.
3rd mention of 53 center per
A study done in 2006 reported the cities and county would save $4.6 million
over 20 years and increase levels of service
3rd mention of 4.6 mil svings/20
Though a site for the dispatching center hasn't been determined, the planned
opening is 2010.
1st that site has been determined
when up to this point it was to be at
the county warehouse.
5th mention of 2.56 grant. $863K
match no longer mentioned.
The estimated cost of construction is $2.16 million
SECC board approved 7.064 million for 1,413 portable radios from RACOM
1st re receipt of 2.7 mil grant
This makes a total of 1,493 radios
Building out to bid at $10,723,000.00, 27,600 sq ft.
2nd mention of $1 million savings
3rd mention of $1 million savings
4th mention of $1 million savings
and hopes to receive part of $8 million the state of Iowa has received for
equipping consolidated dispatching centers
2nd mention of DHS grant, which
the county never received.
The 28E was signed in December
2007. At this point they are saying
the building would be $2.16 million.
A consolidated dispatching center will cost $10 million to $11.3 million to
build for 27,500 sq ft. The preliminary design calls for 27,638 sq ft., which
was down from early discussions at 36,283 sq ft.
Almost 1 year has passed since the
28E agreement was signed. Now
the building is 10 million, 27,500 sq
The dispatching center is planned on a parcel of land near Davenport's Public
Works Department. 18 Consoles and room to expand
New SECC bldg. confirmed at
Tremont and 46th
Cost of the military-type bomb-proof bunker wasn't presented, although it
was briefly mentioned as a possible level of protection. "How much risk do
we want to take?" SECC Chairman Jim Hancock said. "That is what we have
to consider when we decide how hard (the building shell) should be.
The body of the planned Scott Emergency communication Center will cost
$10,822,950 while the guts will cost an estimated $4-6 million. To be built at
46th Street and Tremont Avenue.
Despite the per radio price being in
the June 2007 radio study, they are
not included at this point.
The contract with Racom to purchase equipment and make the improvements
was offset by a $2.7 million grant from the Iowa Statewide Interoperable
Communications Systems Board
Along with the radio purchase, $5,200 to reprogram 80 radios to make them
compatible to the new system and so they can be used by other agencies in
an emergency.
The board also learned that the dispatching center's computer-aided
dispatching and records management system is expected to cost less than
originally estimated. Originally estimated at $4 million to $6 million, it will
stay on budget. SECC director Brian Hitchcock told the board the project has
already been downsized, explaining that early space estimates put the
project at about 36,000 square feet.
Original 6,000 sq.ft. building is now
27,600 sq.ft., and bldg. is now
presented that they've downsized
from 36,000 sq.ft. Continue to
leave the radios out of the costs.
The SECC already has a $2.6 million grant to help pay for dispatching and
records management systems
6th mention of 2.56 grant. No
mention of $863K to get 2.56 grant.
A 2.9 million request for 911 operating equipment will be included in other
requests when a Quad-Cities contingent travels to Washington, D.C. next
month to lobby legislators.
1st mention of 2.9 mill grant
request. $588,000 in Fed grants
were received.
Construction bids for the Scott Emergency Communications Center fell below
the estimated cost of the project, with the low bid about $1 Million below the
expected $8.3 million price tag. $7.28 million
1st mention of $1 million savings.
Originally the building was to cost
$2,340,000. Now a 10.8 mil
building is suddenly a $1 million
The complete cost of the project, which includes geothermal heating and
cooling, work to the Scott County Tremont Avenue jail annex, and updating
the backup center in the Scott County Courthouse brings the total estimate
cost of the project to $10.8 million.
The project had several parts that could be removed if the costs were too
high. SECC director Brian Hitchcock told the board he expected the system
to cost between $3 million and $4 million. Lower operating costs than
previously estimated are also expected for the system that is projected to
last seven to 10 years.
Radio cost not mentioned.
Equipment to last 7-10 years while
bond for that equipment is 19 years.
The board approved the $7.314 million bid from larson and Larson, about $1
million under the estimated cost.
Up from original $7.28 to $7.314 due to window glazing, $28,000, system
monitoring system, $6,000, and $30,000 for excavation and fill at the 46th
and Tremont site.
SECC board will approve bid on the geothermal system at 10/15/09. SECC
has received $188K in stimulus funds for the geothermal project.
Received $188K stimulus for this
$288K expenditure
$7.314 million Center. The construction costs of the 27,600 sq ft
communication center were originally expected to be about $1 million more
than the winning bid
The construction costs of the 27,600 sq ft communication center were
originally expected to be about $1 million more than the winning bid.
5th mention of $1 million savings
With the SECC costs included, the county's budget increased $6.7 million
Urban levy rate, $6.39. Rural levy rate, $9.41.
$7.31 million building. Bids came in about $1 million below the $8.3 million
Geothermal contractor can wait no longer. SECC board removed the grant
contingency from the geothermal bid.
Geothermal moves forward without
receiving the $160,400.00 grant.
2/6/2010 this is the article right before the public hearing for the
FY10-11 budget
Operating costs of the new consolidated dispatching center will increase Scott
county property taxes by as much as 19.8 percent.
In 2008, county official estimated that the communications center levy would
be about 50 to 60 center per $1000. But in the fiscal year 2011 budget, it is
90.2 cents. That estimate didn't include radio equipment costs and was
based on 2006 salary projections, Bruemmer said.
June 2007 Radio Study included the
Radio cost. 53 cents/thousand first
stated November 2007. 2006
Consolidation Study included 21
years of salary projections.
When the 27,600 sq ft communication center opens, it will have nearly 70
FY10-11 SECC budget was for 57.5
employees. Are additional the
Medic dispatchers?