How can Nebraska cities and counties make the most of their law enforcement resources? The elected leaders of the City of Fremont and Dodge County today answered that question, announcing their vision to create a joint Law Enforcement Center to house both the Dodge County Sheriff and the Fremont Police departments.
For more than a year, a committee with city and county representatives has been working toward a joint dispatching center for police, fire and rescue calls. Today, it was announced that the Public Service Answering Point, known as PSAP, would be located at the 725 North Park St., the same location as the Fremont Police Department. Today's unanimous resolution for the PSAP Center's shared dispatching operation is the first phase of a shared law enforcement vision embraced by members of the Dodge County Board of Supervisors and Fremont City Council.
Both governments have agreed to establish a joint Law Enforcement Center serving city and the county residents. Chairman of the Dodge County Board of Supervisors, Bob Missel said discussions were driven by the opportunity to put the community first. He said, "This really is a defining moment for Dodge County and the City of Fremont. With this unanimous agreement, we move forward with a vision to collaborate for the betterment of the community and the taxpayers we all serve."
The Fremont Police Department and Dodge County Sheriff would remain distinct operations. However, the committee researching the joint center, anticipates better public safety coordination and significant cost savings. No savings estimates are yet available but areas for consideration include centralized records, evidence rooms, criminal labs and canine units.
Fremont Mayor Scott Getzschman said the city and county teams took the discussion from the talking stage to a common sense vision. Getzschman added, "Early on, we shared a similar goal to find out if there was a way to make the better use of our resources and deliver greater benefits to all of our citizens. We're on our way to meeting our goal."
The committee exploring the joint law enforcement opportunities also included Fremont City Administrator, Dale Shotkoski; Fremont City Council members Tod Hoppe and Mark Stange; and Dodge County Supervisors, Rob George and Paul Marsh.
The next step in planning for the joint Law Enforcement Center is an interlocal agreement for the PSAP. It's estimated that planning and construction of a joint Law Enforcement Center would take at least two years. The new PSAP for communications could be operational within14 months.