It has now been a month since the Carroll County Board of Supervisors approved entering into an agreement with Motorola for the Iowa Statewide Interoperable Communications System (ISICS) upgrades. The main benefit of changing over to this more than $4 million system is an increase in reliability for radio coverage in currently underserviced areas of the county as well as the capability to communicate with law enforcement agencies across the state. Communications Supervisor and 911 Coordinator, Jason Hoffman, provided an update to the supervisors on the steps taken since approval. As the county looks to utilize existing tower space in Manning, Coon Rapids and the Lidderdale area, rental rates for space on these have been requested and are starting to filter in. Hoffman says, however, that the quoted cost for one of these was higher than he and their consultant, Rey Freeman, had expected.
The team began looking for alternate tower locations in that area that could be utilized at a lesser cost. One was found north of Lanesboro on Timber Avenue.
Hoffman adds not only could this be a cost-saving option, there could be other benefits as well.
These updates would not only be necessary for optimal operation of the tower site, but the landowner is also requesting some kind of fencing around the tower if they do enter into a lease agreement. The next steps would be to have Motorola to provide a coverage map from that new location, complete a structural analysis to ensure the tower is viable and then begin drafting an agreement for the landowner.