To ensure that first responders have reliable communication tools during a catastrophe, King County Executive Dow Constantine proposed a
plan to replace the region’s aging emergency radio network, which is nearly 20 years old, has parts that are wearing out, and suffers from a limited coverage area.
“This network will provide essential equipment that our first responders must have to communicate during life-threatening emergencies,” said the Executive. “Our communities are safer when our emergency personnel have reliable tools.”
PSERN would replace radios used by first responders to communicate during crises, upgrade equipment in King County’s 9-1-1 dispatch centers, increase reliability, and provide greater coverage for radio communications. Eleven cities and their public safety partners have requested that King County replace the existing network.
The Executive’s proposal would ask voters to approve lifting the lid of the existing property tax levy to generate the estimated $273 million needed to replace the radio network. The proposal would increase the levy by 7 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value over a nine-year period. The King County Council will set dates for public hearings on the proposal.
Read the Executive’s proposal from December 2014.