The Genesee County Board of Commissioners voted on January 27, 2021 and approved our request for a local 9-1-1 surcharge renewal of $1.86 to be placed on the May 4, 2021 ballot. Since then we have fielded several phone calls from persons in our community wanting more information about this topic so we are providing the following information.
What do we use surcharge funding for?
- The surcharge funding is used to run the total operation of the Genesee County 9-1-1 Dispatch Authority. We are 100% funded by the surcharge and this is the only source of income for 9-1-1 emergency call answering and dispatch services within Genesee County, including our facilities, equipment, maintenance and operating costs.
- If approved by the voters the surcharge will assess a charge on all landline, wireless, and voice over internet protocol service devices located within Genesee County of up to $1.86 per month, for a period ending December 31, 2026.
Shall the County of Genesee, Michigan, be authorized to assess a charge on all landline, wireless, and voice over internet protocol service users located within Genesee County of up to $1.86 per month, for a period ending December 31, 2026, to be distributed exclusively for funding of 9-1-1 emergency call answering and dispatch services within Genesee County including facilities, equipment, maintenance, and operating costs?
When was the original $1.86 surcharge set and by whom?
- This fixed rate was set in 2017 by a vote of the residents of Genesee County and accepted by the State of Michigan.
Who is Genesee County 9-1-1 Dispatch Authority?
- Genesee County 9-1-1 Dispatch Authority represents 31 local units of government and dispatches for all EMS, Fire and Police agencies within Genesee County with the exception of Fenton City. The City of Fenton has a 9-1-1 Dispatch Center that dispatches EMS, Fire and Police within the City of Fenton.
What is the sunset date and why is this vote needed in May 2021?
- The Board of Commissioners had questions about timing and associated costs, please know that Genesee County 9-1-1 spent a large amount of time in 2020 forming an operational surcharge committee, organizing virtual meetings and reaching out to executives at the State level to determine what might be the State’s course of action when the legislation sunsets on December 31, 2021. We have received no response to date and decided a ballot proposal was the best course of action to secure our future.
- Ballot language was drafted and on December 8, 2020, the General Membership Consortium Commission adopted a resolution to the Board of Commissioners requesting placement on the May 4, 2021 ballot, a renewal of $1.86 per device, per month.
- Genesee County 9-1-1 handles over 400,000 calls annually. With the surcharge intact, Genesee County 9-1-1 will continue to help the 400,000+ citizens it serves 24/7/365.