Commissioners approve dissolution of Morgan Co. 911 board

By Gary Scott on June 27, 2016 at 2:27pm

Official steps were taken today to eliminate the Morgan County 911 board in favor of the West Central Emergency Telephone Systems Board.

Morgan County Commissioners approved the resolution this morning. Morgan County Emergency Services Director Phil McCarty said the disbanding of the Morgan County board will only take place when the new board is officially formed.

Greene and Calhoun Counties have agreed to be part of Morgan County’s new joint dispatch system, which features the Jacksonville Police Department, the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office and Passavant Area Hospital.

McCarty spoke to us after the meeting about the resolution’s passing.

“Dissolving the Morgan County ETSB and bringing in the West Central Joint ETSB is a big step for the western part of the state. We’ve been an ETSB in Morgan County since 1990, is when we started, and bringing on those two counties of Greene and Calhoun is a big step. But, it’s also an exciting step- more population, a lot more square miles of service. That’s why we did this joint project over a year ago to combine our [Public Service Answering Points], so we could do this,” says McCarty.

Morgan County commissioners also accepted a state grant to help enhancing the E-911 services at Greene and Calhoun Counties. McCarty notes the 800-thousand-dollar grant is reimbursable, but with the state budget impasse…

“I can’t guarantee anything on the state side. We have belief that they will pay us, the legislators will get this worked out sooner than later. But, we’re going to move forward carefully and keep working and bringing services down for Greene and Calhoun Counties,” he says.

In other meeting business, commissioners approved their end of an intergovernmental agreement to expand the enterprise zone in Jacksonville to accommodate a project.

The owner of Fitness World wants to build an 800-thousand-dollar sports complex on his Walnut Street property, including a 20-thousand-square-foot gymnasium, walking track and field house.

A second project for the former Modern care facility, which would be refurbished into a modern senior care center, was not approved because it was not placed on the agenda.

Commissioners told a representative from the Jacksonville Regional Economic Development Corporation that they would approve the matter at a future special meeting.

Jacksonville aldermen must still approve the enterprise zone expansion at Monday night’s City Council meeting.