South Dakota Receives Grant for 911 Upgrade

PIERRE, S.D. Gov. Mike Rounds says South Dakota has received a $910,000 federal grant to upgrade 911 emergency communications services.

The South Dakota ENHANCE-911 grant will be divided among 10 public safety answering points to upgrade equipment; one additional public safety answering point will use its portion of the grant to establish E-911 Phase-Two service.

“The transition to next-generation emergency response systems is important to continued public safety in South Dakota,” the Governor said. “These funds will allow the upgrade of hardware and software to meet enhanced 911 needs as they develop. The upgrades will result in a much safer and more responsive network of emergency communications.’’

Enhanced 911 allows a public safety dispatcher to obtain a caller’s number, address or the location of the call, as well as the closest police, fire, and emergency medical services that can respond. The caller’s location will also show up on a digital map at the 911 call center, enabling first responders to pinpoint the exact location of an emergency call.

The South Dakota 911 Coordination Board applied for the grant.Notice of approval came from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the National Telecommunications and Information Administration.

“Our board is eager to take part in the early funding process of upgrading public safety answering points across the state,” says South Dakota 911 Coordination Board Chairman Ted Rufledt, Jr. “It’s the one of the first steps in developing a stronger public safety network for all South Dakotans, regardless of location.’’

A majority of emergency 911 calls come from wireless and Internet-connected telephones, says Lawrence A. Strickling, assistant secretary of commerce for communications and information.

“These grants will help first responders locate where calls are made and ensure that help arrives quickly,’’ Strickling says.

ENHANCE-911 funds will go to the:
– BonHommeCounty Sheriff, $31,810
– CharlesMixCounty Sheriff, $31,810
– Cheyenne River 911 Corporation, $$31,810
– Fall River County Sheriff’s Office, $68,280 (Phase-Two)
– LakeCounty 911 Communications, $47.715
– Minnehaha Metro 911 Center, $369,000
– Pierre Police Department, $63,620
– Roberts County Sheriff’s Department, $31,810
– Watertown Police Department, $63,620
– Winner Police Department, $47,715
– Yankton Police Department, $31,810