Hermiston Approves Consolidating Dispatch with Umatilla County

<p>Hermiston City Council</p>

Hermiston City Council

The Hermiston City Council unanimously approved merging the city’s emergency dispatch services with Umatilla County Monday. 

The move is estimated to save the City of Hermiston approximately $350,000 in the next fiscal year.

The anticipated savings will come from reduced staffing costs and avoidance of planned equipment upgrades. 

The financial savings would come to nearly $250,000 per year in FY ’15-’16 and beyond.

The consolidation is expected to also improve efficiency of dispatching for the Hermiston Fire & Emergency Services District, which currently can be dispatched out of two locations depending on where a call
originates. 

Residents living just outside of Hermiston who call 911 on a cell phone which gets routed through a cell tower in Hermiston currently have their call answered by the Hermiston dispatch center, and
then transferred to Umatilla County’s dispatch center, which can lead to confusion for the responders.

“I think this is what’s best for the City in the long run, and what’s best for customer service for the citizens,” said City Councilor John Kirwan.

Full consolidation of Hermiston’s dispatch services with Umatilla County is expected to take place by July 1, 2014. 

A detailed report outlining the financial impacts and service changes can be found in the “news” section of the City of Hermiston’s website.