Tompkins County
New York


Authorizing an Appropriation of $20,500 from the Contingent Fund to Implement a Mass Notification System in Tompkins County


Department:County AdministrationSponsors:
Category:Public Safety


  1. Printout
  2. Swift911 Background - DJC (This file has not yet been converted to a viewable format)

Resolution/Document Body

WHEREAS, Tompkins County and local governments within it have occasional, but critical, needs to notify the public about issues of timely importance, and


WHEREAS, the County and other local governments within the County now lack a single means to efficiently and accurately address those notification needs in a way that ensures all members of the public who need to be, or would like to be, are informed of important governmental matters that may affect them, and 


WHEREAS, mass notification systems now exist that can provide immediate and consistent communication to the general public for matters of general concern or interest, and to specific individuals who have asked to be notified of specific matters or events, and


WHEREAS, such mass-notification systems enable messages to be sent to the public via phone, text message, email, fax, and social media, and


WHEREAS, recognizing the benefit of such mass notification systems, Tompkins County has participated with the City of Ithaca in evaluating four such systems and both parties have concluded that the Swift911 system, a product of the SwiftReach Company of Mahwah, New Jersey, is the superior system, and


WHEREAS, there are significant economic and operational benefits that result from Tompkins County assuming responsibility for the acquisition and hosting of the system as a shared service, particularly the ability of a countywide system to enable every municipal jurisdiction within the County to implement, without cost, its own unique applications that are appropriate to the community, and  


WHEREAS, the Swift911 system will be managed by the Emergency Communications (911) Center within the County’s Department of Emergency Response (DOER), and


WHEREAS, there will be an annual licensing fee of $20,000 for the Swift911 system that will be borne by the County and that should therefore be added to the DOER target budget and a one-time $500 installation fee, now therefore be it


RESOLVED, on recommendation of the Public Safety and the Budget, Capital, and Personnel Committees, That the County Administrator is authorized to negotiate and enter into a three-year contract with SwiftReach for the Swift911 system,


RESOLVED, further, That the target budget for the Department of Emergency Response shall be increased by $20,000 to allow the mass-notification system to be sustained in the future,


RESOLVED, further, That the Director of Finance be and hereby is directed to make the following budget appropriation:

FROM                            A1990.54400              Contingent Fund                                                                      $20,500

TO:                            A3411.54425              Emergency Communications-Service Contracts                            $20,500




Meeting History

Jul 10, 2017 4:00 PM  Budget, Capital and Personnel Committee Regular Meeting
MOVER:Glenn Morey, Member
SECONDER:Leslyn McBean-Clairborne, Member
AYES:James Dennis, Michael Sigler, Leslyn McBean-Clairborne, Glenn Morey, Daniel Klein
Jul 20, 2017 3:30 PM  Public Safety Committee Regular Meeting

Mr. Mareane provided background information and highlighted the benefits of having a mass notification system in place. He said this is considered a shared service and will be accessible to all municipalities within the County. Ms. Holcomb explained how the system can be used not only in emergency situations, but could be used on a smaller scale and targeted to subscribers for a particular need or matter such as a neighborhood area.

MOVER:Martha Robertson, Member
SECONDER:Peter Stein, Vice Chair
AYES:Rich John, Peter Stein, Martha Robertson
EXCUSED:James Dennis, Anna Kelles
Aug 15, 2017 5:30 PM Media Tompkins County Legislature Regular Meeting

Mr. Mareane stated similar systems exist in other places already. This service will allow Tompkins County and every municipality within the County to receive immediate notification to individuals about circumstances that need timely notification. Municipalities throughout the County will also be able to utilize this system and this is part of the Shared Services plan and will result in a savings for the County as the lead agency.

Mr. Lane stated this proposal originated with the City and following a review of the project it was discovered that it would provide a larger benefit if the County took the lead. It will still allow the City to have the service and will enable all municipalities within the County to have it.

Ms. Robertson said this may cost more in the County Budget but will end up costing less to the taxpayers in the end.

This resolution was adopted by a short roll call vote.

MOVER:Rich John, Member
SECONDER:Glenn Morey, Member
AYES:Will Burbank, Carol Chock, James Dennis, Rich John, Anna Kelles, Dooley Kiefer, Daniel Klein, Michael Lane, Leslyn McBean-Clairborne, Martha Robertson, David McKenna, Glenn Morey, Michael Sigler, Peter Stein