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Board of Supervisors need to take immediate action

The law enforcement personnel of Marshall County urge the Board of Supervisors to take immediate action to facilitate improvements to the Marshall County Emergency Services communication infrastructure.

One of the most fundamental and basic responsibilities of government is public safety. The need for an improved emergency communications infrastructure has been well established and documented. While some may contend each community and municipality bears individual responsibility to fund the necessary equipment, each and every officer, firefighter and medic ultimately serves the entire county not just their own jurisdiction. Examples of this teamwork are evident from the recent derecho,the 2018 tornado response, the countless motor vehicle crashes, vehicle pursuits, criminal apprehension events, as well as missing persons.

As the Board of Supervisors are well aware, the bonding capacity exists to begin this project immediately through the leverage of “essential service bonds”

This radio system as presented is a need and not a want. First responders in Marshall County need to be able to communicate with one another on a reliable network. The first responders in the rural areas of Marshall County serve the citizens of Marshalltown as well as their communities and visitors. Every Marshall County resident will benefit from an immediate investment into this project and further delays only increase the costs the taxpayers of Marshall County who bear the expense to construct the system.

The county has an obligation to provide a system capable of adequately serving the citizens of Marshall County, those who travel through our county, and above all, the first responders who provide essential services. While the Board of Supervisors has acknowledged this obligation, the Board continues to take no action to immediately remedy the deficiency and have stated they need more time though this has been on the countless agendas of Board of Supervisors meetings.

Now is the time for action. This project is expected to require 12-18 months to complete and the refusal to take action only creates additional risk to every first responder in the county and those we serve. The Board of Supervisors knows the foundation and structure of the public safety radio system is weak and failing and is literally on the verge of unrepairable collapse.

The Board of Supervisors have a mechanism with which to ensure this project moves forward, it is time to make a decision and take action.

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