ELIOT, Maine — Town Manager Dana K. Lee asked the Select Board Thursday to amend a new three-year contract for police and fire dispatch services with Kittery.
Lee said he wants a first-year opt-out because of problems Eliot has had with the Kittery dispatch center.
He said he discussed the contract with Police Chief Elliot Moya and Fire Chief Jay Muzeroll. He added exit interviews with police officers leaving the town revealed problems including the attitude of some dispatchers.
Lee’s letter to Kittery Town Manager Kendra Amaral outlined his concerns, mostly that the quality of dispatching may not improve. He proposed Eliot’s contract with Kittery have the first-year opt-out if things do not improve.
Lee asked for improvements in the attitude and professionalism of some dispatchers, improvement in records management, better quality assurance, development and implementation of policies and regular meetings to discuss quality assurance.
The cost assessment is $108,360 in the first year (2019-2020) plus $13,645 for capital costs for the implementation of Emergency Medial Dispatch, for a first-year total of $122,005. Year 2 would be $123,360, and year 3, $138,360.
Chief Moya said newly hired officer Timothy Niehoff has experience with dispatching and Lee said Niehoff could help with the talks with the Kittery dispatch contract.
The board supported Lee’s letter to Kittery.