Onondaga County 911 center gearing up for upgrades

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) - Onondaga County’s 911 center is about to get some key upgrades, thanks to two new big state grants.

Officials say the grants will give the center quicker, more reliable service – but that isn’t all.

The grants combine for a total of about $1.4 million.

The new ASAP System will allow alarm companies to talk to the 911 center more accurately and, on average, two minutes quicker by allow them to leap over a couple of steps.

“Time is everything in our business so shaving two minutes off a call will certainly be to the advantage of the people who call us for help.  So that means they'll see public safety agency hopefully two minutes sooner,” said Onondaga County 911 Commissioner Bill Bleyle.

In addition, some of the money will allow them to improve the 911 text system.

“Just as in every business where technology is constantly changing, here in the 911 business its changing at a very high rate and in order to keep pace with those technologies we have to make continuing investments,” Bleyle said.

The lion’s share of the grant money - $1.3 million of it – will allow for major upgrades to the backbone infrastructure to ensure that 9,000-plus radios used by over 150 public service agencies in Onondaga County are always operating.

The grant money comes from surcharges on cell phones in New York – there is no impact on county spending.

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