Tech support OK’d for 911 director
By Carrie Napoleon Post-Tribune correspondent August 23, 2013 4:12PM
Updated: September 25, 2013 6:12AM
CROWN POINT — Lake County’s new E-911 director will get the technical support he needs to determine the best way to purchase the millions of dollars in equipment for the consolidated E-911 center.
The Lake County Board of Commissioners has approved a request to hire a technical consultant on an hourly basis to help Brian Hitchcock create a request for proposal if E-911 panel members decide not to use the state quantity purchase agreement.
“Having talked with the E-911 director he indicated if we are going to consider a RFP it will be necessary for us to have a technical consultant in place as soon as possible,” chairman Roosevelt Allen Jr., D-Gary, the board of commissioners’ representative on the 911 panel, said.
Earlier this year members of the E-911 Commission moved to use the state quantity purchase agreement for the equipment, such as the dispatcher consoles needed for Lake County’s consolidated E-911 center, after a failed request for proposal attempt by the former technical consultant left them closing in on the Dec. 31, 2014, deadline without another six to eight months to go through the process again.
The failure resulted in the Lake County commissioners ending the contracts with former 911 director Jeff Cicilian, Joe Mrak of RQAW Consulting Engineers and Architects, and project manager Les Miller with IYP Solutions, and paved the way for hiring Hitchcock.
Allen said Hitchcock recommended using Mazzitello Professional Services of Spring Valley, Wis., as the technical consultant at a rate not to exceed $125 an hour because of the company’s experience in the field. Mazzitello is working on several consolidations and already has current data from which to base a proposal. He said by using Mazzitello, a request for proposals could be ready in as soon as two months.
Commissioners also took action on a second request by Hitchcock to formally name the back-up site for the consolidated E-911 center. E-911 commission members earlier this year selected East Chicago as a back-up site. Commissioners said they wanted Hitchcock’s opinion on the feasibility of the site since the decision was made before he came on board.
Hitchcock told the Board of Commissioners East Chicago would be a large enough site to accommodate enough communication equipment to serve the county’s 500,000 residents.