Minutes of the Regular Meeting of the Gurnee Emergency Telephone System Board - January 22, 2013

REGULAR MEETING 01/22/2013 10:00 AM

Meeting called to order by Chairman Velkover at 10:04 am

Present: Velkover, Friedl, Lambert, Kincaid, Marquardt, Muetz
Absent: Burkhart, Schwarz


Minutes of the 11/13/2012 Regular Meeting

Chairman Velkover thanked Friedl for running that meeting and Mann for preparing the minutes. Velkover then asked for any comments or  corrections to the minutes.

No discussion made.

Motion to approve by Friedl, 2nd by Mann

Aye – All
Nay – None
Motion Carried

Consideration of Amended 2013 Meeting Schedule. Velkover indicated that he had conflicts for both the March and November meetings. The amendment changed the March and November meeting dates to both be held on the 12th of the month.

Motion to approve by Muetz, 2nd by Lambert

Aye – All
Nay – None
Motion Carried

Velkover advised that revised copies of the schedule will be posted and sent to the media for publication.

Correspondence and Communications

Notice from Lake County Emergency Telephone System Board – Joint Jurisdictional Agreements – 11/12/2012

Marquardt has put together our letters and will be sending them out to the respective agencies, with copies to be included in the
next packet.

Federal Communications Commission Report and Recommendations – Impact of the June 2012 Derecho on Communications Networks and Services – January 2013

Velkover suggested that reading the report would be worthwhile, and stated that the negative impacts on 9-1-1 service were both lengthy and significant in highly populated areas of Virginia. Marquardt asked if the report pertained to Hurricane Sandy.

Velkover recalled the event as a straight line wind event starting in southern Illinois and continuing through to the East Coast.

Velkover highlighted the report comments regarding backup power for cell sites, and telephone company central office failures also related to lack of electrical power. The FCC provided recommendations for changes in both operating and notification procedures.

D.C. 9-1-1 Center Deploys Alarm Interface to CAD System – Radio Resource – 01/04/2013

Velkover indicated that a standard for electronic transmission of alarm data from alarm companies to PSAPs has been adopted and was referenced in the article. Marquardt added that this was referred to as ASAP to PSAP, that Houston had conducted early testing, and that the topic was covered at the APCO Conference in Springfield.

Caveat Texter: Text-to-911 is not a substitute for voice calls – Government Computer News – 01/08/2013

Velkover indicated that now that some jurisdictions conducting trials of text to 9-1-1 services, the details are being hammered out.

Marquardt asked about the deadline for carriers to provide their portion of the service. Velkover did not recall the specific date, but agreed that a deadline had been set. Discussion continued regarding the particular methods being employed in different areas of the country on either a trial or ongoing basis. ESI networks, their function, their components, and how one might be developed in Illinois were discussed. The flexibility and resiliency of ESI net versus older tandem trunks and traditional Central Offices were also discussed. Marquardt added that Illinois is yet to pass legislation for NG 9-1-1 testing to be authorized.

9-1-1 texting moves to real world - Government Computer News - 01/07/2013

Intrado unveils interim text-to-911 application – Urgent Communications - 01/03/2013

Des Plaines 911 center might disband – Daily Herald – 8/29/2012

Island Lake to lay off dispatchers, outsource service to Lake Zurich – Daily Herald 01/18/2013

Velkover indicated Island Lake appeared to be a familiar story of size of the center versus cost of operation leading to consolidation. DesPlaines was already consolidated, instead the cost of new facilities and a new CAD system were drivers in the decision to disband. Discussion continued regarding the particular agencies served and their makeup (police vs. fire).


Treasurer’s Report – May 1, 2012 – Dec 31, 2012

Velkover went over the report briefly. Revenues of $241,378.00, expenditures of $227,852.00 resulted in a net gain of $13,000.00.

He further indicated that with expenditures planned for MDCs, there would likely be a net loss in fund balance for the year. There was no further discussion made.

Motion by Lambert to Approve, 2nd by Kincaid

Aye – All
Nay – None
Motion Carried

Communications Statistics
October 2012 & November 2012

Marquardt noted that non-emergency lines calls are up for both months. Police calls are up but this appears to be due to better reporting/tracking of police activity. EMD scores were lower due to new quality assurance standards and scoring now being done by dispatch and not the fire department. Marquardt equated this to stricter scoring. Kincaid added that the change has resulted in a large time demand on the supervisors. LEADS entry has increased and seems to be due to the entry of Articles. Marquardt will prepare a YTD comparison report for the next meeting. Velkover noted 911 calls have leveled out at around half of what the historical peak was at. Marquardt noted fire alarm testing was up. He was not sure what the variance in alarm testing was due to.

Velkover added that AT&T continues increase leased line costs as part of their efforts to leave the wire-line phone business, and
that he felt more holders would move to radio alarms as a result.

Marquardt brought up that the ADT contract is up in July. It has been disappointing so far with their effort to get their monitoring software upgraded. Discussion was made as to what was being done in looking into alternative Alarm Companies. Marquardt estimated that we monitor over 500 fire alarms and only a few dozen burglar alarms. Discussion continued regarding ownership of the equipment, radio frequencies, and service models in place in other jurisdictions.

Private Switch ALI / VoIP / MSAG Items

900 Kilbourne Road – It was agreed that students are no longer attending school at the location. It was not determined if some of the offices are still being utilized beyond running the buses from Kilbourne. According to the fire bureau the school is still working on transitioning the phone system to the new school.

3455 Washington Street – Friedl indicated that there was nothing new to note.

3740 Grand Avenue – Nothing has been changed regarding 9-1-1since the last meeting with the business. It was noted that this location generates a large number of Police incidents. Muetz added that information was being collected on any building code or other issues regarding the location. Discussion was made about anything else that can be done to gain compliance. It was noted that PS-ALI legislation did not offer an enforcement mechanism or provide for the closure of an establishment.

Marquardt indicated that he was aware of issues with the Township Center, and their recent change in locations.

CAD System

Lake County ETSB CAD Fusion Project (FATPOT)

Velkover and Marquardt attended a demonstration of Lake County’s Interoperability Project (FATPOT). Vernon Hills and Glenview have MOU’s signed and we have been provided with copies of those agreements. Velkover indicated that he did not see any large concerns regarding any cost to the Village. The representatives were highly confident they could work with PSSI, to which Velkover remained skeptical. Marquardt added that the project included two phases, with the second phase adding two-way communication. Velkover asked for volunteers to review the MOU and bring this back to the next meeting with a recommendation. Marquardt and Friedl advised they will review them.

Radio Systems

Cooperation with Waukegan Police/Fire/Communications

Velkover indicated that a new antenna cable and equipment was put in place at the Northwestern tower. They have or will have fire receive, police receive and fire transmit capabilities at the location. They put all that equipment in an outdoor rated cabinet at the base of the tower. This was a noticeable cleanup of equipment and all the work is done. Similar work is being planned for Waukegan’s equipment at the Heather Ridge Tower, but it was not a priority at this time. Conversation was held with Waukegan about putting our fireband on their console. They had  concerns about the age and serviceability of their console at this time.

Heather Ridge & Northwestern Tower Equipment Mounting / Cabinets

It was requested of Chi-Comm for quotes for cabinets similar to the one Waukegan installed at Northwestern and we have at the Pembrook tower. Velkover advised this quote was not yet complete but some estimate numbers were given. This would move all of the equipment from the older, smaller, indoor Motorola style cabinets. Better protection of the equipment, additional mounting space, improved grounding, easier serviceability, temperature control, and better batteries were all cited as reasons to consider the change.

Future interior & exterior painting activities – Pembrook Water Tower

Velkover indicated that this site is likely going to be painted sometime in the next 24 months. An issue will arise in that this is the primary transmit site for police primary, police tactical and fire bands. Planning is being done for what should be done during this process. Radio licenses are being reviewed regarding alternate transmit locations. It was also noted that voting may be required to improve Police Tactical coverage, and that ideas are being explored to reduced leased line charges related to radio backhaul.

Fire Voter System – investigation of additional receive site – SE area

Lambert advised there is poor coverage in select portions of the southeast area of the Fire Protection District. Some antenna work at the police station corrected some of the issue but not all. Discussion has been made about 2 possible sites. 8th Street and Green Bay road water tower is a possible site as Waukegan already has equipment at this location. The second site is a leased site owned by Chicago Tower off O’Plaine Rd south of the tollway. The O’Plaine Rd site would be a more difficult location for backhaul.

Mobile Data Computers (MDCs)

Velkover indicated that an issue arose with the new units and being extremely cold. This was being addressed with a BIOS update, which initially appears to have corrected the problem. For Fire units Datalux has updated their hardware for the Tracer units. These units appear to be less than the Coban units price for units not utilizing in-car video. We are proceeding in obtaining a demo unit from Datalux. An estimate of $187,000.00 would complete the 9-1-1 portion project for both police and fire.

Approximately $196,000.00 is left in the budget year for this project. Mann brought up installing new Datalux units in the 3 CSO vehicles, as these do not have any need for video. This might be a cost saving in both the unit and installation. This idea will be discussed further prior to releasing an RFP.

Public Safety Telecommunicator Standards Certification Initiative

Velkover referenced the DRAFT APCO American National Standards for Public Safety Communications Quality Assurance Evaluators (QAE) included in the packet. He also noted the Shift Leader Richardson was cited as a contributor. Marquardt advised the State of Illinois and APCO/NENA have a joint committee working on getting legislation passed to address this.

He advised that this may be similar to the Quality Assurance work for EMD, broadened to include Police and Fire dispatch activities. This may be difficult to achieve particularly for smaller centers, as dedicated training staff resources may be indicated.

Business Items

Expenditures / Invoices / Bills

Velkover reviewed the 911 Fund Expenditure Summary covering the period of 11/07/2012 – 01/17/2013 with expenditures of $38,426.21. He stated that the Account Activity Listing for 11/07/2012 – 01/17/2013 provided additional details on both revenues and expenditures. He indicated that the Detail Budget Report Fiscal Year 2013 to Date and a Budget Transfer Request for Meeting & Maintenance Expenses of $324 was up for consideration and/or discussion. The budget transfers included a request for conference expenses received after the last meeting putting the account over the budgeted amount. Velkover entertained a discussion of any of the items.

Motion to approve by Mann, 2nd by Friedl

Roll call vote
Aye – Mann, Muetz, Marquardt, Kincaid, Lambert, Friedl, Velkover
Nay – None
Motion Carried

Renewal of XYBIX Maintenance Agreement $13,400

Velkover stated that the agreement covered a two year period, and that the powered lift mechanisms in the workstations for the keyboard and monitor surfaces were the most frequent and otherwise expensive repair item. Mann added that repairs were sporadic in nature, but time consuming.

Motion to approve by Friedl, 2nd by Marquardt

Roll Call vote
Aye – Friedl, Lambert, Kincaid, Marquardt, Muetz, Mann, Velkover
Nay – None
Motion Carried

Discussion of FY 2013-2014 Budget Proposal

Velkover, Kincaid and Burkhart met as a committee and worked on the proposal. Velkover stated that regarding revenues; wireline revenues were projected to continue decrease; wireless would decrease slightly due to a large one-time payout of the unused carrier reimbursement funds by the State; and that interest income was inconsequential. The expected FY 13/14 revenues totaled $310,800 compared to the current fiscal years budgeted of $324,000 and projected year-end of $327,000.

For expenditures the following items were noted; funds were once again included for part-time Communications operator(s); funds removed for IMRF based on advice from Human Resources Director Christine Palmieri; funds were added for consulting services related to the future acquisition of NG 9-1-1 equipment; funding for network services anticipating a change in the backhaul for Mobile Data Computer network traffic; and additional maintenance funding for the logging recorder (as the 3-year pre-pay will be ending). Telecom equipment included two items for further discussion: replacing the Busy User Display (BUD) lights; and upgrading the existing 9-1-1 answering equipment.

Regarding the BUD lights Marquardt stated the current BUD lights met operational needs, but new lights were important should the center expand. The new lights would allow supervisors to know when the Telecommunicators required assistance. With the new lights 4 different indications could be given as opposed the current 2 (one for radio transmit, and one for telephone off hook). Marquardt added that waiting do make this change would likely result in additional cost. Velkover summarized the discussion at the March meeting, and the decision to postpone the purchase at that time. Kincaid stated she did not support the decision to delay the purchase. She further stated that Chief Woodside had intended to come to the ETSB meeting regarding this issue. She felt and that the current ceiling mounted indicator for assistance in the lobby was not serving its purpose. Muetz questioned the necessity of making the change at this time. Kincaid felt it was important that the operators know when someone is in the lobby and the new lights could improve the situation. Velkover indicated he would be supportive if the intent was to improve customer service, and if Chief Woodside held a similar interest. Mann asked if everyone felt an indicator light for persons in the lobby located at each position would be the most effective. Mann added the future changes in the building video system may be able to trigger a camera video display based on detected motion. Velkover indicated that funding of $6,000 was included in the proposed budget which could be used for the purchase, but that he felt the item was worthy of discussion.

In regards to upgrading the existing 9-1-1 answering equipment Velkover related the following: the existing equipment was manufactured by Positron and installed by AT&T; while the equipment may no longer be offered for sale as new, we had no indication that an end of support date had been announced. Marquardt had concerns regarding the equipment for VoIP calls in determining the VoIP provider. Velkover indicated that with the upgrade submitted for consideration by Marquardt, the maintenance amount would increase from $13,000 per year to over $30,000 per year. Velkover expressed a desire to explore the coordination of the purchase and selection of NG 9-1-1 equipment with other area agencies. Marquardt questioned the amount of time required for standards for NG 9-1-1 to be set, and how long it would take vendors to meet said standards. Marquardt was concerned that in 4-5 years the current equipment would no longer be supported and stated he did not want to wait for standards before pursuing an upgrade. Velkover felt the first step was to look for opportunities for cooperation beyond our individual ETSB asked if there were any objections to reaching out to area agencies regarding their plans.

Marquardt said that in light of the questions raised, it was time to hire a consultant. Velkover asked for opinions on an amount for
consulting to be included the budget proposal. Velkover related that both RCC and Ehlert & Associates had been used in the past.
Discussion continued on the scope of work, conditions which would necessitate an equipment change, opportunities for
coordination, and limiting our initial outlay until a consultant proves their worth. It was decided to budget $15,000 for Consulting
Services in order to begin the process of reaching out to other agencies and set a direction for NG 9-1-1 equipment in the
upcoming fiscal year.

Velkover reviewed the proposed capital line items for Computer Software, Communications Equipment and Mobile Data. He stated that in total the expenditures exceed revenues by over $120,000. He explained that the total of maintenance items, part time salaries, and recurring costs are approaching our annual revenues, resulting in a spend-down of fund balance for capital projects. Past large capital purchases were summarized. Mann asked about the impact of contemplated Police Station video system changes. Velkover indicated that no 9-1-1 funds were allocated regarding that project, but it would be considered as the project progresses. Muetz indicated that he would like to see the meeting line item come in at or under the budgeted amount in the upcoming fiscal year.

It was decided that this could addressed with the number of participants for the annual Springfield 9-1-1 conference.

Motion to approve the proposed budget as amended by Friedl, 2nd by Marquardt

Roll call vote

Aye – Mann, Muetz, Marquardt, Kincaid, Lambert, Friedl, Velkover
Nay – None
Motion Carried

Public Comment

No comment made.

Motion to adjourn at 11:45 am by Lambert, 2nd by Muetz

Aye – All
Nay – None

Motion Carried – Meeting Adjourned

Next Currently Scheduled Meeting: Regular Meeting – March 12, 2013 - 10:00am

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