PLYMOUTH - The Town Council recently approved an agreement to share two local communications towers with Thomaston to improve police communications in town.
Plymouth has service gaps in its public safety radio system, Mayor David Merchant said. “Thomaston has two towers, and by granting us access to these two towers hopefully this will improve the communications in some of our dead spots.
The agreement had already been approved by the Communications Commission and by the Town of Thomaston, he added.
The towers are located at 170 Mount Tobe Road, at 297 North St. The agreement is the two towns will split the cost of leasing the towers, which is $47,092 and is expected to rise by four percent annually. Merchant said some equipment needs to be installed at the towers.
Town Attorney Bill Hamzy said the lease has an initial term of five years and will automatically renew for five years periods afterward, unless either town takes action to not renew.
Martin Sandshaw, Communications Commission chairman, said the idea is to use microwaves for police communications instead of phone lines.
“It’s going to allow our police personnel to have ‘on hip’ communications when they go on site, which they do not have now. They have communications in their vehicles. This is for when they get out of their vehicles,” he said.
Sandshaw said subleasing the towers with Thomaston is a cheaper option than upgrading communications towers at Fall Mountain or at Town Hall, which would have cost an estimated $600,000.
The roughly $23,000 for the first year of the agreement was already included in the communications section of last year’s budget, he added.
Susan Corica can be reached at 860-973-1802 or firstname.lastname@example.org.