Montgomery County Council

News Release

October 17, 2000

Council Approves Funding for Public Safety Mobile Data Units

The Montgomery County Council today approved $49.2 million to complete funding for the public safety Mobile Data System.

The funds approved today, along with the approximately $80 million approved earlier, will complete purchase of a state-of-the-art radio and data system including in-vehicle computers for the Montgomery County Police, Fire and Rescue services and the Sheriff’s office.

Police officers will have access to information from local, state, and national databases on crime and vehicles within seconds. Fire and rescue personnel will be able to access street directions and whether hazardous materials are stored at a location.

"The Mobile Data System represents a quantum leap forward in the County’s ability to protect public safety and increase productivity," said Councilmember Phil Andrews who chairs the Public Safety committee.

The Council initiated the Mobile Data System project in 1995. Since then it has approved funding for a system integrator to ensure radios and in-vehicle computers can communicate with each other. Both the police department and Fire and Rescue Services have completed pilot projects that have tested specific equipment to assure that the hardware and software meet their needs.

"This is a big step in the Council’s support of our public safety personnel," said Marilyn Praisner, chair of the Council’s Management and Fiscal Policy committee. "These tools make it easier for them to serve and protect our community."

The system is expected to be fully functional by July 2002.

Patrick Lacefield, (240) 777-7939
Jean Arthur, (240) 777-7934