Dispatch furniture purchase approved

Published 12:34 pm Tuesday, January 8, 2019

The Prince Edward County Board of Supervisors recently unanimously voted to authorize the purchase of specialized furniture for the sheriff’s dispatch, approving a Fiscal Year 2019 budget amendment in the amount of $38,124 and appropriating the same funds.

This vote took place at the board’s regular December meeting, Dec. 11.

Wade Bartlett

“At the last board meeting, the board approved the appropriation of $315,000 for the purchase of a new radio system for the sheriff,” Prince Edward County Administrator Wade Bartlett said. “That has been ordered. It cost $312,743. (I) don’t know when it will be delivered, so please don’t ask.”

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He asked Assistant County Administrator Sarah Puckett if she was given any indication when it might be delivered. She did not specify a time but said it was being shipped to be programmed and assembled.

The board meeting packet stated that “the courthouse renovation project contains adjustments to the sheriff’s dispatch and the atrium to allow public access to dispatch after hours while restricting access to the rest of the courthouse. This involves the purchase of new furniture to allow rearrangement of dispatch. After discussions with the architect, it is recommended the new dispatch furniture be purchased now. This will allow the sheriff’s office to achieve full use of the new radio system and reduce the time needed to complete the renovations in dispatch by consolidating the new dispatch equipment, new GIS system and new camera monitors onto furniture specifically designed to hold the equipment. This will allow organization of the cabling and a reduction of the number of power lines.”

During the meeting, Bartlett said, “To move forward, basically, what we did not do was on the purchase of this equipment, we need some new, we’ll call it furniture, but it’s specially made furniture. It’s custom furniture. It’s on a GSA contract, so we do not have to go out for bids. It’s the same equipment that the Town of Farmville, Appomattox and maybe Buckingham also uses …”

“As you see the price — $38,124 — it appears a little pricey, but this furniture is much more durable than regular office furniture,” he continued. “It has a lifetime warranty for whoever buys it as long as you don’t sell it to somebody else. It’s heavier gauge steel. It has thicker cores in the panels and in the table tops. Actually the sides can be unbolted. That’s important because radio equipment receives a lot of updates over the years, so that allows an ease of taking the equipment in and out. This stuff is specially made for that.”

The board packet elaborated on the nature of this furniture, noting that it is “costly because it is specifically designed to hold/support equipment in 911/dispatch offices. It is custom-built to the room … The items are made to withstand 24/7 use … the furniture contains its own internal power and cabling ports and are customized to the space with a lifetime warranty.”

Robert M. “Bobby” Jones

Echoing some of the board packet, Bartlett said, “The manufacturer of this equipment has been here five times to measure the dispatch office. It will make it easier when it comes time for the renovations to move this, because right now, if you look where all the lines are, it looks like a big plate of spaghetti and about that organized. So to move the equipment now would not be easy. Our architect understands this. We talked with him to make sure he’s on board; he is. It would have been part of the project anyway. That was always part of the project.”

The only comment before the unanimous vote came from Lockett District Supervisor Robert M. “Bobby” Jones, who said he was in favor of the motion after saying, “I think the rail equipment came in right much under what we were afraid it was going to come in at one time …”