The 2016-2017 San Joaquin County Civil Grand Jury determined that a single countywide emergency fire dispatch center is needed in the County of San Joaquin.
“Leadership must address this challenge head on, overcome politics and egos and negotiate in good faith to create a single countywide fire dispatch center,” the grand jury’s report stated. “Now is the time for county, city and special district leaders to join together ‘under one roof’ in the interest of public safety.”
San Joaquin County Emergency Dispatch has changed considerably over the last 40 years. The 2016-2017 Grand Jury focused on emergency fire dispatch protocol, operations and infrastructure. The question of whether a single countywide fire dispatch center in San Joaquin County would improve public safety and reduce cost was explored. Among other issues, the investigation concentrated on the following:
There are two fire dispatch centers operating in the county which utilize disparate technologies; one center’s technology is nearing end-of-life for software and hardware.
Politics, egos and fear of change are key obstacles to the formation of a single countywide dispatch center.
The vast majority of fire agencies are in favor of a single countywide emergency fire dispatch center; they agree it would be in the best interest of the citizens and San Joaquin County. Most county and city administrators, as well as IT staff support this concept.
“With such an overwhelming response, one should ask why no significant effort has been made to make this happen,” the report added in making the recommendation for the effort to begin in earnest.