CANTON — St. Lawrence County is receiving funds to pay for the construction of three new communications towers in the county.
The county Office of Emergency Services will receive a $848,652 grant from the state Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Office of Interoperable and Emergency Communications to concentrate on improving interoperability and operability of communication systems, according to a resolution passed Monday by the county Operations Committee Monday. The committee will approve a one-year contract with the state office.
Currently, there are communications towers in Star Lake, Cranberry Lake, Colton, Massena, Russell and Ogdensburg. There are also repeaters on the roof of a building in Hammond for fire and law enforcement.
Under the grant, which will put $748,652 toward technical equipment and $100,000 toward other fees and services, the new towers will be constructed in Waddington, Gouverneur and Hammond, with the new Hammond tower replacing the current building repeaters, according to County Deputy Director/EMS Coordinator Jonathan Mitchell.
The new towers will help increase emergency services communications in those parts of the county, Mr. Mitchell said.
The Office of Emergency Services said it received 4,379 fire calls, 18,496 EMS calls and 20,598 law enforcement-related calls in 2019.
According to Monday’s resolution, the state Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Office of Interoperable and Emergency Communications Statewide Interoperable Communications Formula Grant will provide aid to county, local and municipal public safety organizations to enhance emergency response, improve capability, improve governance structures, operating procedures, infrastructure development and address SAFECOM guidance from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Office of Emergency Communications.