Commissioners discuss possible Public Safety Communications Advisory Committee


By Meladi Brewer

GREENVILLE — The Darke County Commissioners met Thursday to discuss a possible Public Safety Communications Advisory Committee. Commissioners Matt Aultman, Mike Stegall, and Larry Holmes were present.

The Darke County Commissioners authorized a countywide public safety communications system for the purpose of creating and operating a system of communications facilities, equipment and services that help to provide immediate field exchange of police, fire, and emergency medical services.

Darke County Sheriff Mark Whittaker attended the meeting to give a little background about what the intent of the new committee would be.

“After meeting with and speaking with most of the public safety associations: the DC Fire Chiefs, EMS Chiefs, and Police Chiefs, as well as township trustees and the mayor’s association, and having some conversations over the last 12 months, these groups would like to have more interaction, communication, and collaboration between the communications within the county,” Sheriff Whittaker said.

Whittaker said they have had similar committees in the past, but they would like to see something a little more permanent. The advisory committee shall include a chairman of the Board of Commissioners, at least two fire chiefs representing the village or township agencies, two police chiefs, two EMS chiefs, one City of Greenville public safety chief, one City of Greenville emergency communications supervisor or dispatcher, the county sheriff or his designee, the county 911 coordinator, the county emergency management directory, a member of the board of township trustees, a mayor of a village in the county, and a citizen at large.

“(We) want to create a committee that is more permanent and will meet hopefully on a quarterly basis,” Sheriff Whittaker said. “It is so we can work together to develop whatever is needed: policies and looking at new technology. I think it is just a good move to have an advisory board.”

The board would advise the sheriff, the board of commissioners, and the 911 coordinator how to better serve the citizens of the county. Once the committee is formed, Sheriff Whittaker said they will look into creating some bylaws regarding term length, expectations, etc. The commissioners approved the resolution at the meeting.

An expense request for Job and Family Services was approved for Carla Allen and Bonnie Whitesel to attend the Ohio Department of Child Support Fall Conference in October. An estimated total for both parties to attend is $1,016.60.

Scott Zumbrink, the County Treasurer, spoke about a payment processing agreement between Invoice Cloud, Inc. and Darke County. By entering into an agreement with Invoice Cloud, the county will be able to offer taxpayers a wider variety of payment options during the next year’s term starting in Oct. of 2023.

“Invoice Cloud will enable us to accept payments the way we currently do and go one step further with electronic checks. They will be able to use Google Pay, Apple Pay, Venmo, etc. to pay their real estate taxes,” Zumbrink said.

He said he hopes this helps by opening up payment options. Invoice Cloud will also enable those who misplace their tax bills to access them online to see an image of the tax bill at any time and date. It is currently set for a three term.

The Darke County Board of Commissioners meets every Tuesday and Thursday at 1:30 p.m. at their office located at 520 S. Broadway Street in Greenville. To contact the office, call 937-547-7370.

To contact Daily Advocate Reporter Meladi Brewer, email [email protected].

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