Better communications slated as long-term goal for town |

Better communications slated as long-term goal for town

Director of Public Works Tom Covey presented a preliminary communications plan to town council last week, stating that improved communication between all departments and improved emergency communications are the long-term goals of the town’s plan.

Covey, who served on the town manager’s appointed communications committee, explained that currently all town departments communicate on the same radio frequency. At times, heavy radio traffic interferes with timely and efficient communication, he said. Securing emergency channels and implementing a consistent purchasing plan among departments are two goals of the preliminary plan.

Until a new town hall has been selected and occupied, the purchase of a new interdepartment phone system is on hold, Covey said, as is the purchase of cell phones until service providers have been researched further.

The committee’s findings indicate that continuing with the existing communication system of two-way radios should serve town departments well in the immediate future if certain modifications are made soon. Those modifications include adding three low-band frequencies to those currently in use and adding low-band equipment to facilitate communication between the animal control department and its contract areas and local law enforcement agencies.

In the future, adding a high-band frequency will provide a secure channel for the law enforcement agency serving Truckee, Covey said, adding that the applications for a low-band frequency and a high-band frequency have been submitted for approval to the Federal Communications Commission. The application process takes about six months.

The council unanimously adopted the preliminary communications plan, allowing town departments to proceed with communications purchases budgeted for 1999-2000.

In other business, Captain Gary Jacobson of the Nevada County Sheriff’s Office presented to council a very brief Y2K follow-up report.

“The biggest comment I can make about the evening of Dec. 31 is that it was a big non-event,” Jacobson said. “It was a great night for law enforcement.”

Jacobson reported that throughout town, Y2K problems were few and minimal, and at the Sheriff’s substation the only real problem with entering the new year is that a Department of Justice fingerprint computer will not allow entry of the year 2000. All other systems appear to be functioning optimally.

Council also voted on several other items last week.

– Council members unanimously agreed to the Richards Boulevard right of way abandonment requested by Frank Kavka. The abandonment and resultant lot line adjustment will produce from three substandard lots two developable parcels.

– Councilmember Bob Drake dissented as the town council voted to publicly support Propositions 12 and 13 to be placed on the March, 2000 ballot. Passage of Proposition 12, The Safe Neighborhood Parks, Clean Water, Clean Air and Coastal Protection Act, and passage of Proposition 13, The Safe Drinking Water, Watershed Protection and Flood Protection Act, could bring millions of dollars to the Truckee area through federal and state funding and grants. The two propositions are publicly supported by the Nevada County Board of Supervisors.

“I don’t want to take a position,” Councilmember Drake said. “But I absolutely believe that voters should inform themselves fully and then vote.”

– In closed session, council authorized the town to enter into a settlement with Walter Harvey, Harvey vs. Town of Truckee. The terms of the settlement state that Harvey will pay the town’s attorney fees in this case and Harvey will drop his suit concerning ownership of a small section of town right-of-way at Coldstream Canyon, Town Manager Steve Wright said.

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