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November 9, 2022 - 6:03pm
posted by Press Release in news, genesee county, emergency communications.

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Press Release


Sheriff William A. Sheron, Jr. announces the promotion of Francis A. Riccobono to Director of Emergency Communications of the Genesee County Emergency Services Dispatch Center. Director Riccobono assumed his new duties on October 29, 2022.

Director Riccobono has over 31 years of experience in Genesee County emergency dispatching services, having begun his dispatching career with the City of Batavia Police Department in 1991, and transitioning to the Genesee County consolidated dispatch center in 2008. In 2019, he was appointed Assistant Director of Emergency Communications/Operations. During his tenure, he has been awarded two Commendations.

“Director Riccobono’s vast amount of emergency services experience is a very valuable asset to Genesee County,” stated Sheriff Sheron.

March 5, 2021 - 10:57am

The director of Emergency Communications for the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office is getting his ducks in a row, calling upon the Genesee County Legislature to appropriate funds to advance a public safety capital project that includes the building of a communications tower on Molasses Hill Road in the Town of Attica.

Speaking at the legislature’s Ways & Means Committee meeting Wednesday, Steven Sharpe presented a resolution that calls for the reallocation of $301,835.67 in unexpended funds and unanticipated revenue to the public safety communications tower project.

“As we are building the tower on Molasses Hill Road, which is just over the Wyoming County line, we’d like to move money from the original capital project for the radio system that was created in 2013, and move the balance of funds from that 2013 capital project into the more recent public safety communications tower project,” Sharpe said.

He indicated that the Molasses Hill site will fill “a dramatic hole that we’ve had since we put the 800-megahertz system back in in 1991 as we’ve always had problems along Route 98 and along Route 238 going into Attica.”

Sharpe said a settlement involving Nextel has resulted in an additional $255,243.86 in unanticipated revenue coming into the county. The resolution also includes the sum of $46,591.81 that has yet to be spent from the 2020 communications operational budget and the 2013 800-megahertz radio upgrade capital project.

The Ways & Means Committee approved the measure, which now goes before the entire legislative body on Wednesday.

Sharpe said the total cost of the project is $1.9 million, which is about $200,000 more than what is currently in the capital project budget. But, he added, that he is waiting to hear about funding from the Statewide Interoperability Communications Grant program and that the $1.9 million figure includes “some contingencies in case we run into something that we don’t expect.”

“Right now, this allows us to make sure we’re paying the bills until that next round of money comes in, and once we have that money we will reimburse against it,” he explained, adding that grants will cover most of the project cost.

When asked about the timeline of the Molasses Hill work, Sharpe said language is in the contract to have the tower connected to the radio system network by April 30.

“They have to have the microwave equipment completely done by August 6th and we’re hoping that once they’re connected to Darien and we’re talking to the network, we’re going to start optimization in May or June,” he said. “We’re looking at doing coverage analysis in June and July so we have full coverage of the trees, make any adjustments in August and final acceptance, hopefully, in September …”’

The committee approved a second resolution that authorizes amending a “zero dollar” lease agreement with American Tower Asset Sub LLC, of Woburn, Mass., to upgrade the public safety radio system equipment on a tower on South Lake Road in Pavilion.

Sharpe said this is necessary because the Cedar Street (Batavia) tower is overloaded.

The County is changing its originally planned microwave link from Darien to Molasses Hill to Cedar, which would have reused an existing microwave link.

“Instead what we’re doing now is going from Darien to Molasses Hill to Pavilion,” he said. “What that does is allows us to have a parallel path for our radio system, and in the future as we have to do any work or upgrade or replace the Cedar Street, we won’t have to take the whole network down and we’ll still have a parallel path.”

He said the lease agreement gives the county greater flexibility.

“Back in 1998, the town and the county had the wisdom, as far as zoning rules, to negotiate for free access for our equipment on that tower. There are some minor costs, such as structural analysis and if we have to change the tension on those guy wires,” he said.

Sharpe said there are nine towers in Genesee County, one in Albion that connects to the Orleans County system and one in Chili that connects to the Monroe County system.

“Verizon just built a tower on Hundredmark Road in the Town of Elba, so that might be a future site, which would give us 10 sites within the county that are transmit sites to go along with our two dispatch centers at 14 West Main Street in the city and one at the dispatch center on Park Road,” he said.

December 7, 2016 - 3:01pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in emergency communications, genesee county, Le Roy, news.

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A new 165-foot communications tower is being installed today on Town of Le Roy property off of Asbury Road (the site at one time of an airport).

The tower is part of the county's upgraded 800 megahertz digital communications system and will help fill in some dead spots in the town and village of Le Roy. It will also help in spots in Le Roy where communication was harder inside of buildings.

Steven Sharpe, director of emergency communications for Genesee County said the tower will also help complete the phase of building interoperable capabilities with Monroe County's emergency dispatch center, which will then also create a bridge for communications with Ontario County.

"Our goal is to improve interoperable capabilities throughout the region," said Sharpe (in the bottom photo, taking a video of the shelter for communications equipment being lowered into place.

The tower is funded with a $3 million grant from the state.

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September 20, 2016 - 9:44am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, news, emergency communications.

When the county implemented a new, all-digital emergency communication system two years ago, it wasn't long before first responders in Le Roy discovered there were dead spots in their community.

There were also buildings in Le Roy that the radio signals wouldn't penetrate.

Consultants were consulted and they did their studies and came to the conclusion that Le Roy needed its own repeater transmission tower.

The county has reached an agreement with the Town of Le Roy to obtain an easement on town property on Asbury Road to build a new communications tower.

 Steven Sharpe, director of Emergency Communications, said the new tower should solve Le Roy's reception problems.

The tower, the seventh in the $11-million system, is covered as part of a $3 million state grant for improvements to the system.

Construction should begin this fall, with testing to start in the spring or summer. It must be operational by December 2017.

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