SANATOGA PA – A donation of five mobile data computers from the Montgomery County Department of Public Safety to the Lower Pottsgrove Police Department gives the township force time to budget and buy equipment that will replace now obsolete devices in its patrol vehicles, Chief Michael Foltz told the Board of Commissioners on Monday (Aug. 4, 2014).
Foltz last month warned commissioners that laptop computers in its fleet were running on operating system software no longer supported by the manufacturer. It made them incompatible with new emergency dispatcher software being implemented countywide. Upgrades costing more than $20,000 would have had to be purchased immediately to solve the problem.
The county donation of the Fujitsu-brand computers covers more than 70 percent of the township vehicles, and “alleviate(s) the hardship of having to replace the entire fleet (of computers) in the patrol cars,” the chief reported. “As a result, the department will only need to buy two new units” now at a cost of about $6,600.
Commissioners unanimously authorized the expense from contingency funds in this year’s township budget.
Other new computers, described by Foltz as specifically “ruggedized,” “hardy” and “convertible” for rougher field use, must be bought in the future. For now, though, the computer donation helps Lower Pottsgrove dodge a “significant budget upset,” he added.
Related (to the Lower Pottsgrove Board of Commissioners’ Aug. 4 meeting):
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