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08/26/2008

Computer Information Systems Inc. Chosen to Provide Improved Information Sharing Solution to Upgrade and Update the City’s Public Infrastructure

After an in-depth search for their first automated Public Safety Software Solution, the City of Pinetop-Lakeside awarded a contract to Computer Information Systems Inc. (CIS) from Skokie, Illinois to provide the City with state-of-the-art, Windows®-based Public Safety Software Systems.  CIS looks forward to serving the Pinetop-Lakeside Police and Fire Departments so they can better assist the 4,000 residents as well as the tens of thousands of visitors that flock here to the scenic White Mountains during busy summers and ski seasons.

The plan for an integrated, automated Records and CAD System began in 2005, with the arrival of Chief Sherwood “Woody” Eldredge Jr. and his initiative to “modernize” the Police Department. “Pinetop-Lakeside was in a unique situation when I arrived in 2005. The Fire Departments, Pinetop and Lakeside, were upset because of the lack of response from the Police Department,” Police Chief Eldredge said.  “I promised the Fire Departments that we would try to work together and be more receptive to the Fire Departments’ needs.” From the beginning, both Pinetop and Lakeside Fire Departments were intimately involved in the demonstrations and selection process of the new system. Chief Eldredge explained that the process was tedious, but essential in answering the questions: “What are we going to spend the money on,” and “What is essential to the operation.” All in all, the police and fire departments observed nearly ten (10) product demonstrations before issuing a Request for Proposal to which six (6) to eight (8) vendors submitted competitive bids.

With a collective vision to bring a user-friendly integrated solution, a desire to partner with a vendor with a reputation for strong service and a commitment to automate its Public Safety System, the City of Pinetop-Lakeside selected CIS as the best solution to meet their needs.  Chief Eldredge said, “One of the major determining factors is that CIS’ System did exactly what we wanted it to do and produced the results that we wanted.  The biggest selling point was that CIS’ software worked during demonstration.”
           
“Sure, larger vendors were able to demonstrate the same features as CIS, but the larger vendors were also charging our small agency the same prices they would for much larger agencies.  We recognize our responsibility to the residents of Pinetop-Lakeside.  We are spending tax dollars and we cannot have a system that will not meet our needs.  We need a system that works and priced within our budget,” Eldredge added. 

Pinetop-Lakeside will install CIS’ Computer Assisted Dispatch (CAD) System, Records Management System (RMS) and Mobile Computer System (RMS), as well as related interfaces. The wide range of CIS’ Public Safety Systems were developed in-house and will provide Pinetop-Lakeside Police and Fire Departments with field-proven, mission-critical capabilities. 

Chief Eldredge recalled, “I couldn’t believe when I first came to Pinetop-Lakeside that the dispatchers were using what amounted to a glorified spreadsheet. Officers were entering identical information into an arrest sheet and incident sheet and then into booking.  There were no search capabilities or integration. It was mind-boggling because officers were doing the same thing two (2) to three (3) times.” The ease-of-use and interoperability within the CIS Software will supply Pinetop-Lakeside with easier access to information for analysis and reporting, as well as eliminate the redundancy of data entry and will improve the efficiency of the departments. 

CIS’ Public Safety Software Systems will also allow Pinetop-Lakeside Police and Fire Departments’ commanders, officers, firefighters, dispatchers and staff to better communicate, to protect the safety of their officers and firefighters and to focus on their commitment to the community.  “Our 4,000 population increases to 30,000 people during busy summers and ski seasons, but we do not add any more officers in response to the influx of visitors,” Eldredge said.  “For that reason, it is important that the officers of our small agency use their time most effectively.  Our new system will eliminate data re-entry, allow for better search capabilities and increase officers’ visibility and time on the road.”

Pinetop-Lakeside Police and Fire Departments’ management have completed training and the city will actively begin to run the system next month.  Chief Eldredge said, “Officers and dispatchers are really excited to ‘go live.’ We don’t have anything right now as far as an automated system, in integration, and what dispatchers will be able to do with our new CIS System is very exciting.”

A very exciting time it is; the City of Pinetop-Lakeside will become CIS’ very first (1st) installation in Arizona, but they join a growing CIS User Base of over 550 public safety agencies nationwide that rely on CIS.

About Computer Information Systems Inc.
Computer Information Systems, headquartered in Skokie, Illinois, develops, markets, maintains and supports its seamless Windows® Systems: Computer Assisted Dispatch (CAD) System, Records Management System (RMS), Civil Process System (CPS), Jail Management System (JMS) and Mobile Computer System (MCS).  Since 1985, Computer Information Systems has had a single market focus of Public Safety Software Solutions, which are being used by hundreds of agencies who rank CIS as one of the largest providers nationwide.  For more information, visit www.cisusa.org or contact Linda Berk at 877-673-7800 or via email, linda@cisusa.org.


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