While it only takes a couple of minutes to start the process of calling households to warn of a severe weather situation, finishing those calls can take nearly a third of an hour, Leitchfield city council members learned Monday, June 18.
Kim Miller, director of Grayson County’s 911 dispatching center, attended the city council meeting to discuss concerns over severe weather dispatching. In early May, council members had questioned how notifications were being made after several people reported receiving calls about a storm after the warning had expired.
Miller said the notification system, which calls subscribers on an alphabetical basis, “takes 19 minutes to make a full circle through the county and call everyone.”
In the case of severe weather, that could mean a warning expiring before some people were called, she said.
The notification system is used for severe weather alerts, evacuation notices and other emergency warnings.
Miller said since the dispatching center tweaked the notification system to focus more on tornadic activity, complaints about the calls have dropped off. Previously, the software was also used to spread the word about thunderstorm warnings.
She estimated about 25 percent of the county’s residents dislike the service at this time.
In other action the council:
* Approved the 2012-2013 budget, which estimates general fund revenues of $5,766,710 and expenses of $6,065,955, for a deficit of $299,245. The general fund covers such expenses as running city hall, the police and fire departments, and the public works department.
The council also approved the 2012-2013 budgets for the tourism commission and the water and sewer department. The tourism commission is expected to receive revenues of $607,000 and spend $579,428; the water and sewer department to receive $8,7o7,720 and spending of $8.6 million.
* Announced a retirement party for Todd Cave and Mike Woosley will be held at city hall July 2, following the city council meeting.