SLO, Atascadero, Paso Robles and Cal Poly considering merging dispatch centers

The cities of San Luis Obispo, Atascadero and Paso Robles, as well as Cal Poly, are considering merging their public safety dispatch centers into a single regional facility. 

Atascadero and the CSU Board of Trustees have approved a memorandum of understanding on conducting a feasibility study of the proposal. On Tuesday, the Paso Robles City Council will consider approving the memorandum, as well. 

San Luis Obispo, which initiated the process of studying the possibility of merging dispatch centers, is also expected to approve the memorandum. If approved, the study will determine whether forming a joint powers agreement for a regional dispatch center is feasible and cost effective. 

A Paso Robles city staff report states regionalized public safety dispatching is used by many jurisdictions throughout the United States to reduce operating costs associated with personnel, technology and maintenance. 

The first phase of the feasibility study is expected to cost $126,586. SLO would cover 36.7 percent of the cost of the study, followed by Paso Robles covering 32 percent, Atascadero covering 21.3 percent and Cal Poly covering 10 percent.

Over the span of 2015-2017, San Luis Obispo dispatchers received an average of 48,442 calls for service per year. Paso Robles dispatchers received an average of 34,218 calls, Atascadero dispatchers received an average of 28,424 and Cal Poly police received an average of 13,338 calls.

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One Comment about “SLO, Atascadero, Paso Robles and Cal Poly considering merging dispatch centers”

  1. honestjohn says:

    Joint powers agencies are never a good idea. They are always off of the public’s radar and grow into abominations that start with a promise of efficiency and end with outrageous costs and corruption, just like the SLO County Integrated Waste Management Agency, Oceano Sanitation District, SLO County Council of Governments, the Air Pollution Control District, Local Agency Formation Commission, and Five Cities Fire Authority, just to name a few! These are all bloated agencies with minimal oversight with excessive staff and salaries. They are a place to hide government misdeeds, including pork barreling (SLO COG), fraud, theft, and unnecessary empire building. Administrators are left with a free hand to rule at will because governing boards are part-time part-timers (emphasizing their lack of engagement) who provide almost no legitimate oversight and they are easily manipulated. When you have a bad administrator or board member there’s little to hold them back.

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