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Emergency call center to add 2 full-time posts

Short staffing at the 911 Center was addressed by the Salary Board during a Wednesday meeting.

Two full-time dispatcher positions were added in addition to a quality assurance position by the board.

Public Safety Director Ken McCorrison said the 911 Center is “quite short staffed” for “about the last year.”

He said the department has seven full-time dispatchers now – with two in training – but said that adding two additional would result in three working at the center at all times.

That would address overtime issues when someone takes a sick day or vacation day.

“I have one employee with almost 900 hours of overtime,” he said. “We cannot continue to go down this path.”

“Having the resources available to me is absolutely necessary,” McCorrison added. Looking regionally, “we’re light on the administration side and light on the dispatcher side by several people.”

The added positions, he said, would address burnout issues.

“The whole job itself has changed dramatically in the last few years,” he continued, citing increased rules and regulations from the state. “I feel very strongly that we need two additional positions at 911.”

“There just aren’t enough of us to do what needs to be done.”

The positions were approved and the commissioners gave HR the permission to post the positions immediately.

McCorrison also presented a quality assurance position which the state has mandated effective Jan. 1, 2020.

He said the department doesn’t currently have the staff to take that on and reported that other counties are indicating it is a full time position.

“We need support there,” Commissioner Jeff Eggleston of training at the 911 Center. “A lot of the issue that we have with staffing has to do with training and being to train multiple people. (I) think this is a very important position.”

That position – along with several others and a couple bonuses – were also approved unanimously. Two up for consideration were continued until the next Salary Board meeting on Nov. 27.