Reynoldsburg City Council voted unanimously Nov. 13 to allow the police department to apply for a U.S. Department of Homeland Security grant.
The grant would provide funding for 80 percent of the estimated $300,000 cost to fully equip the department with 800 MHz radios. The system, which is being used by many central Ohio agencies, would allow all first-responders to effectively and efficiently share information.
If awarded, the city would be required to contribute $60,000, or 20 percent, of the overall cost and pay a monthly service fee to Columbus to use air time on the Columbus communication system.
The council had previously had reservations about applying for the grant, questioning the 800 MHz system’s usability and service requirements.
In a memo to the Mayor Robert McPherson, police Lt. Scott McKinley acting police chief, provided answers to council’s questions.
McKinley contacted other first-responder agencies to ask about effectiveness of thesystem. In addition, he contacted the Columbus Public Safety Department which provided a bulk of information on the system.
Councilwoman Donna Shirey stated that she believed the city could benefit from the use of a new system.
"I am in support of the 800 MHz radio system and I feel strongly this is something the city needs," said Shirey.
With council’s approval the application will be submitted and notification of award could be received early next year.
In other news:
•City Council approved the appointments of Tom Kucera to serve a four-year term on the Board of Zoning and Building Appeals, and Charles McGrath to serve a four-year term on the Planning Commission, both effective Jan. 14, 2008.