By Tiffany Thompson, Staff Writer
Wednesday, July 10, 2013 —
After having a public hearing Monday night, the Stanly County Board of Commissioners voted to approve a resolution that will help to secure financing for a new 911 system.
As reported June 20, the commissioners made the decision to move forward with a plan that will update the county’s 911 system. The current system is approximately 40 years old, making it outdated by today’s standards.
The plan would include installing new system infrastructure, as well as purchase new radios that will be compatible with the new system and construct radio towers.
The county is seeking to enter into a lease purchase agreement with Motorola for the implementation of the project. The lease is not to exceed $8.5 million.
It will include costs for construction of towers and for equipment. These will be financed over 15 years with an estimated interest rate of 4.34 percent.
First payment towards the lease will be deferred for two years with an initial annual payment of approximately $640,764.
The agreement also provides for portable radios to be purchased through a seven-year term at an interest rate of approximately 2.88 percent. Again there will be a two-year delay in the first payment, which is estimated to be $344,531. With the aid of reimbursements through inter-local agreements, however, that cost is expected to be reduced to approximately $189,492, making the total annual replayment to be $839,256.
According to the resolution, the county proposed entering into the agreement due to the significant impact the project has on public safety, as well as to allow the county time to seek grant funding for the project.
While a tax increase may be possible in order to making funding available for repayment of the lease, it will not be the first option the commissioners choose, according to the resolution.
“The county will seek grant funding, explore other revenue sources and make expense reductions before taking any action to increase taxes,” the resolution states.
The commissioners had a public hearing to allow comment on the proposed lease agreement before a vote was taken on the resolution, but no one spoke.
As part of the next step, the lease agreement information will be presented to the North Carolina Local Government Commission for review before any final approval is made.
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