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First step in merging 911 centers approved

The Pierce County Finance and Personnel Committee took a first step Monday into possibly changing one of the essential functions of county services.

The committee approved a resolution authorizing a feasibility study to consolidate St. Croix and Pierce counties' 9-1-1 centers.

Committee Chairman Jeff Holst explained the study is needed to see if the two counties are compatible and to determine whether or not it is a cost saver for Pierce County.

"It could change the way we do business forever," he said, adding the two counties have had preliminary discussions about this topic.

This move is indirectly related to Pierce County's plans for a new jail, which an ad hoc committee has been studying for the last six months. A common complaint the state inspector has had with the Pierce County Jail for years is separating the jail from the dispatch unit. A final report is likely due to the finance and personnel committee next month.

The resolution calls for Pierce to pay half of the study's total cost, which is not to exceed $40,000.

Monday's action was just the first of many steps if this ever becomes reality. First, the action has to go to the full county board for approval. The study then needs approval from the St. Croix County Board of Supervisors to pay the other half. Then, both counties will wait for the study's findings to determine if it is best to move forward or not.

For more please read the June 5 print version of the Herald.

Jason Schulte

Jason Schulte is a reporter for the New Richmond News since February 2015. Prior to that he spent eight years at the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth. His duties with the News will include covering news out of Hammond and Roberts along with action from St. Croix County court system. He lives in Roberts. 

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