When Alpharetta approved the original agreement in mid-December, its officials were under the impression Johns Creek would be signing, along with Milton, Sandy Springs, Roswell and Mountain Park.
Johns Creek’s contribution to the $16 million agreement was estimated to be $2.7 million, a cost the remaining cities will make up.
Alpharetta’s city administrator Bob Regus said the city has the funds needed in its E-911 reserves and DEA, or confiscated asset, funds.
Mayor David Belle Isle asked if Johns Creek will be able to sign on to the radio system when they realize “they made a mistake.”
City Attorney Sam Thomas said the agreement allows for other cities to become subscribers to the radio system.
When asked about Johns Creek’s participating in planning for the joint system, Regus said he and officials from all the other north Fulton cities, including Johns Creek, met in mid-November and agreed to enter into the plan.
“We were all in. We said that,” he said.
Until now, the cities’ emergency and public safety radios have been tied to the Fulton County trunk, an analog system built in the 1990s.
According to city officials, the system has been problematic for several years due to its incompatibility with surrounding digital systems, increasing instability, discontinuation of manufacturer support and a high usage fee charged by Fulton County.
The county system will not meet FCC standards after 2014, so instead of entering into a new system with Fulton, the participating cities will work together.
“I like seeing the cities of north Fulton work together,” said Belle Isle. “I’m not giving up on mutual city agreement.”
The agreement still calls for Sandy Springs to take the lead in procuring various elements of a new system, with each individual contract for equipment and services to be approved by each of the other cities.
Mountain Park will also be on the system but will not be contributing monetarily, according to Roswell’s City Administrator Kay Love.