In March, 2010 they are working together to solve some lingering communications problems that plague Stark County's emergency forces. Smooth and integrated communications are a key in effective law enforcement and emergency force response.
For years now, Sheriff Swanson has been working, through obtaining federal grants, to equip all of Stark's policing/emergency forces with a state-of-the-art 800 megahertz radio communications system. At yesterday's Stark Council on Governments Governance Committee regular monthly meeting, it was made known that Congressman John Boccieri has agreed - as one of his top priorities for Stark County - to see an "earmark" of federal funds to complete the purchase of the necessary monies to fulfill Swanson's dream.
Larry Dordea, of late, has become an evangelist for advanced integrated Stark County emergency force communication. He has been pushing a plan for Stark County's law enforcement, fire departments and EMT forces to get behind a plan proposed by TAC Computers, Inc utilizing the Summit County Emergency Management Agency's grant submission facilities to obtain TAC's state-of-the-art software to integrate home base and "in-the-field" police/emergency force including Computerized Assisted Dispatch (CAD) for the revamping of Stark 9-1-1 centralized dispatch.
There has been some skepticism (healthy, in the judgment of the Stark County Political Report) about the viability of the TAC system in view of the promise that the system would be "free."
The SCPR has been at two of Dordea's presentations and is satisfied the "deciders-in-chief" are asking the right questions and putting Dordea and TAC owner Tom Craven to the test in providing answers to key questions as to whether or not the system would - indeed, be "free," and effective.
As it turns out, "free" means that the $1 million or so in cost will be paid for (if Stark officials can get the Summit Emergency Agency to get behind the TAC plan) by a federal grant. However, there will be ongoing maintenance costs in the range of $150,000 per year.
Dordea may have achieved a critical mass that might well propel his effort to success at yesterday's Governance Committee meeting.
Among the most enthusiastic for the TAC plan was none other than old Dordea political foe: Stark County Sheriff Tim Swanson.
That Swanson would support Dordea in his effort for the good of Stark County does not surprise the SCPR.
During the campaign when The Report talked with Swanson, he had nothing to say critical of Dordea. In fact, he credited Dordea with cleaning up an illegal drug use problem in Alliance where Dordea had been police chief.
The SCPR applauds both men for setting aside their political differences in a mutual quest to do the right thing for Stark Countians!