February 22, 2006
Newton County, Georgia agencies to share $1.6 million Spillman system
LOGAN, Utah - In Newton County, Ga., 10 public safety agencies have purchased a $1.6 million data sharing software system from Spillman Technologies, a leading public safety software provider located in Logan, Utah.
The agencies include Covington Police, Covington Fire, Newton County Emergency Management, Newton County Fire, Newton County Sheriff, Newton Medical EMS, Oxford Police, Oxford Fire, Porterdale Police and Covington-Newton County 911 Communications Center. The 911 Communications Center will house the server.
"Using an integrated Spillman system will allow us to share data across the entire county, and access information from state and federal databases, without picking up the phone or contacting a surrounding agency," said Mike Smith, Director of the Covington-Newton County 911 Communications Center. "It just makes sense to have everyone working with the same information."
They will use Spillman's records management, computer-aided dispatch, fire/EMS management, mobile communications and resource management software as applicable to each individual agency's needs. The Newton County Sheriff's Department will only use Spillman Mobile, and will interface their current records management system in order to exchange information with the Spillman database.
"Before using Spillman, we were required to enter the same information into multiple systems, none of which were communicating with each other. Having a central database will streamline our operations by reducing duplicated work," said Smith.
The project will be funded by SPLOST - a Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax - that Newton County voters approved on March 15, 2005. The SPLOST adds a penny per dollar in sales tax to fund the new Spillman system as well as other public safety, interoperability and data sharing initiatives for the county.
The Covington Police Department and Covington-Newton County 911 Communications Center have been using Spillman since 1992, and introduced the system to the other agencies around the county when the decision was made to implement a shared system.
"We showed our Spillman software to the surrounding agencies and everyone agreed that it is a comprehensive, robust system that can cater to the individual needs of each separate agency, while still allowing us to achieve our data sharing goals," said Smith. "The 911 Communications Center is very comfortable with the Spillman system, and confident in its abilities to meet our needs. We couldn't see any reason to start from scratch with something completely different."
Exchanging information through a central server also gives every Newton County agency access to an extensive regional database, without requiring each one to purchase and maintain expensive hardware or hire a system administrator. The 911 Communications Center will employ a full-time system administrator that works with all 10 agencies.
"We want to be an example for other regions that are moving toward interoperability and expanding their data sharing capabilities. The ultimate goal of every public safety agency is to have as much information as possible in order to better protect the community, and sharing a Spillman system gives Newton County that capability," said Smith.
Spillman Technologies provides a full range of software solutions for public safety agencies, including Computer-Aided Dispatch, Records Management, Mobile Communications, Corrections Management, Fire/EMS Management, and Resource Management. The software is installed at more than 540 agencies nationwide.