Wi-fi system improve, bonus fee really helpful for COVID funds | Atlantic

CASS COUNTY – Cass County Emergency Management Coordinator Mike Kennon suggested that the County American Rescue Act spend funds on upgrades to the county’s radio system and bonus payments for key first responders.

Last month, Cass County’s board of directors agreed to accept $ 2.4 million from the US bailout plan, although no decision was made on how the funds would be used other than forming a committee to propose ideas.

The law provides federal funding to support efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19 and to offset the lost revenue of state and local governments. Funds can be used to support the public health response to COVID-19, from vaccinations to payrolls for public health, healthcare, human services and public safety personnel, or to replace funds from budget constraints.

Kennon said Motorola officials are working on some proposals to improve the county’s radio system, and they believe the funds from the law could be used to do this after consulting federal officials.

“(Motorola officials) have posted flyers in the counties that read ‘Consider using Motorola Service technology that supports the public health response,'” Kennon said.

He said public health officials are using the radio system to “talk to hospitals and other public health facilities.”

Board member Steve Green said one proposal is to improve the signal for the system with the equipment at the Atlantic Water Tower and could cost “on the order of $ 1.8 million.” Another proposal is to install equipment to improve the signal in the Cumberland and Massena area, and Kennon said they are still awaiting the cost of the second proposal.

Another suggestion was to use some of the funds as a “bonus payment” for key first responders who had to work throughout the pandemic and who may have to work longer.

“Our dispatchers were here every day throughout the coronavirus,” he said.

Board members said they should also consider offering the salary to law enforcement or public health workers for the same reason.

The board did not react to the suggestions.

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