Despite initial concern over dispatchers’ salaries and job security, the Niskayuna Town Board voted unanimously Tuesday night to join the county’s centralized emergency dispatch system.
The suburban town is the latest municipality to sign on to the countywide project that is expected to improve public safety and save money over the long term. The town of Glenville recently voted to join the dispatch plan, after an initial period of hesitation.
Board members had expressed concern that the nine dispatchers the town currently employs might be out of a job with a centralized system, said town Supervisor Joe Landry.
“All nine would get a job at the central dispatch center, wherever that is,” he said Wednesday.
“People would still maintain their jobs, but go to a different work site.”
Schenectady County will also negotiate with each union so nobody receives a salary reduction, said Landry.
Members were ultimately on board with the plan because of its potential for public safety improvements.
In a small county, it will be easier for law enforcement personnel from different agencies to communicate with each other on high-speed chases through multiple jurisdictions, said Landry, or call for backup fire assistance from a neighboring jurisdiction.
“People are satisfied this will enhance public safety and people will be treated fairly,” he said.