911 dispatch center agreement delayed as communities negotiate

Local News

WINNEBAGO COUNTY, Ill. (WTVO) — The Winnebago County 911 Center has been on the County Board docket for months as both sides cannot seem to find common ground.

Loves Park Mayor Grey Jury said five of the nine communities do not want to sign the agreement until changes are considered.

“Today, this evening was just another step in the process to reach an agreement with the consortium on the 911 agreement, so we’re eager to see the process go on and get the process moving,” said Winnebago County Deputy Chief Mark Karner.

Several officials said that the current proposal still has some cause for debate.

“There’s some items that the agreement, we were given, we made some changes, or requested some changes, and they basically, the county has basically said no,” Jury said. “Trying to negotiate either a staffing level or a service level so we are provided a good service and if one community gets out of it do the rest of the communities have to pay the difference?”

Out of the nine communities using the Winnebago County 911 Dispatch center, “Currently Loves Park and Machesney are the only ones that pay for 911 service,” he said.

“We’re currently paying around $140,000 a year and the payment amount on the agreement is not a concern, I think we’re going up to like $165[thousand],” Jury said.

The Sheriff’s Office is eager for a resolution.

“As long as we can get the details worked out to the sanctification to both parties so that we can go on, get down to work and go about the business of improving these services at the 911 center we’re all for it,” Karner said.

The County Board sent the agreement back to committee to continue working on negotiations.

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