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Communications link with area law enforcement on agenda
[December 03, 2012]

Communications link with area law enforcement on agenda

Dec 03, 2012 (Daily News - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- The Bowling Green Board of Commissioners will consider measures that would make some law enforcement agencies within Warren County more interconnected at the board's regular meeting on Tuesday.

Agreements to allow both Warren County and the Western Kentucky University Police Department to connect to the city's Computer-Aided Dispatch system will be up for votes at the meeting.

In November, the Warren County Fiscal Court approved a series of measures allowing the Warren County Sheriff's Office to join the city's CAD system.

Both the county and the WKU Police Department are buying CAD systems but want to link to a piece of technology within Bowling Green's CAD system called a "message switch," according to a memo from Bowling Green Police Department Chief Doug Hawkins to City Manager Kevin DeFebbo.

The message switch is an interface between the departments using the CAD system and the Law Enforcement Information Network of Kentucky and the National Crime Information Center, according to the memo. It also allows for some intercommunication between CAD systems connected to the message switch.

Hawkins said the department is still exploring the amount of intercommunication which will be possible through the system.

"There is the capability of data sharing that, down the road, will benefit all the agencies," he said.

Connecting to the Bowling Green Police Department message switch will save both the WKU Police Department and the county about $60,000 each, according to the memo.

The city has used a CAD system for about 15 years, Hawkins said.

In addition to allowing Warren County and the WKU Police Department to use the city's message switch, the city will also share a file with both agencies that includes all the people the department has had documented contact with during the course of about 15 years, Hawkins said.

"All of our hard work over the past 15 years will benefit those two agencies immediately," he said.

The Bowling Green Police Department will soon be updating the software for its own CAD system, using a more user-friendly graphic user interface, Hawkins said. The installation of that new software is being delayed while new equipment is put into place, but should be operating early in 2013.

Other items on the agenda include the second reading of an ordinance to approve the rezoning of a piece of property on Old Morgantown Road and approval of the city's Comprehensive Annual Financial Report.

If approved, the ordinance would rezone 1.56 acres at 603 Old Morgantown Road from multifamily residential to general business. A neighborhood grocery store is planned on the property if the rezoning is approved.

The first reading of the ordinance passed with a vote of 4-1. Commissioner Brian "Slim" Nash was the lone vote against it. He raised objections during the meeting about the need for the rezoning and whether or not a grocery store would fit in with the current property use in the neighborhood.

The financial report covers the fiscal year which ended June 30. The report shows that the city's net assets exceeded liabilities by about $171 million last fiscal year. That's an increase of about $15.4 million from the previous fiscal year.

The city's governmental activities debt decreased by about $6.4 million, according to the report.

Favorable weather this summer created an increase of about $300,000 in revenues from city enterprise funds which include golf, aquatics and the convention center. That good weather prompted increased participation at municipal golf courses and the aquatic center, leading to increased revenues, according to the report.

___ (c)2012 the Daily News (Bowling Green, Ky.) Visit the Daily News (Bowling Green, Ky.) at Distributed by MCT Information Services

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