Ocean City Today

County conditionally agrees to $8.6 million radio contract

Emergency services inches toward new system; Mystic Harbour tower undecided
By Brian Gilliland | Feb 08, 2018

(Feb. 9, 2018) While still not a completely done deal, the Worcester County Commissioners have conditionally approved an operating contract with the Harris corporation to allow the new emergency radio system, expected to cost about $8.6 million over its lifetime, to begin operations.

County government officials are still concerned with the placement of a tower near the Mystic Harbour Wastewater Treatment Plant that still needs to be constructed. Harris, according to a memo to the commissioners by Emergency Services Director Fred Webster, seems to favor installing a tower to the north and a tower to the east of Mystic Harbour to meet coverage goals. County officials seem to favor keeping the tower where it is.

The agreement reached and ratified by the commissioners during their Tuesday meeting, allows the five towers that are already prepared to begin operations to do so, going live on Feb 14.

Changes are also required at the Maryland State Police barrack in Berlin.

Webster reported construction at Mystic Harbour will proceed, and the changes in Berlin will be made, then a new round of testing would be performed this summer, when local trees other flora are in full foliage and present the greatest challenge to wireless communications.

Though the new system will be in use, according to the agreement, the county has not yet agreed to accept the system in its entirety, and may back out if it chooses to do so. If it chooses to accept the system, the county will produce a formal document stating so, but only after successful field testing of the entire system, Webster wrote.

Also, the warranties on the Mystic Harbour equipment are set to begin after the testing has occurred.



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