Emergency Services Communication Services (9-1-1) are funded by county governments. By a vote of County Electors, each household and business pays a $1 per month fee for 9-1-1 service on each telephone line that appears on their phone bill. The North Dakota Century Code allows a 9-1-1 fee to be collected up to $1.50 per subscriber line. With the rising cost of dispatch, the LaMoure County fee of $1.00 will not be able to cover the expenses of 9-1-1 in the county. Thus, LaMoure County Commission has authorized a ballot measure to increase the 9-1-1 fee in the June 2020 Primary election.
LaMoure County 9-1-1 expenses must include a contract with a Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) or Dispatch Center. The Dispatch Center shall be capable of answering calls 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. Currently, LaMoure County contracts this service to North Dakota State Radio. North Dakota State Radio answers calls for 25 counties in North Dakota. With increased call volume, the cost to purchase equipment with current technology and hire and maintain staff of a Dispatch Center has significantly increased. Thus, in 2021, the cost will be $1.36 per phone line of the 9-1-1 fee will go directly to the public service dispatch contract.
During the General Election, LaMoure County Measure 1 will address the Emergency Services Communication Services (9-1-1) fee. The measure specifically reads “Should the current emergency service communication (9-1-1) fee of $1.00 per month per communication connection applied to all assessed communications services (telephone access line, wireless access line, and unique voice over internet protocol service) be increased to a maximum local (not to exceed) collection of $1.50 per month per communication connection commencing on January 1, 2021, for the operation and maintenance of the emergency services communications (9-1-1) system for LaMoure County?”. A “Yes” vote means you approve the increase of the local fee up to $1.50 per month while a “No” vote means you do not approve the increase of the local fee and it would remain at $1.00 per month