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State and Eddy County agree on new communications for Fire and Rescue

A communications upgrade for Eddy County Fire and Rescue (ECFR) from the State of New Mexico allowed greater and extended emergency radio coverage across the county and state, said Chief Joshua Mack.

The Eddy County Board of County Commissioner’s approved a $6.9 million agreement between the County and the New Mexico Department of Information Technology (DoIT) Sept. 7 to join the Statewide Digital Trunked Radio (DTRS).

Renee Narvaiz, DoIT spokesperson said DTRS is a consolidated state-wide public safety radio communications system, hosted by DoIT and its partners that is currently being deployed.

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“DTRS is a $170 Million project being funded thus far by capital appropriation. Thirty-nine million dollars  has been appropriated for the project since fiscal year 2019 and the project is planned for completion in 2027.  It exists to provide high quality, high coverage interoperable radio communications to state and participating local, federal, and tribal agencies,” she said. 

Narvaiz said federal, state and local agencies across New Mexico subscribed to DTRS.

In a memo to commissioners, Mack said Eddy County received a credit of $1.3 million from DoIT for radio fees.

Eddy County Commissioners approved a nearly $7 million upgrade for Eddy County Fire and Rescue communications on Sept. 7, 2021.

“These funds will be used toward our $20 per radio per month cost,” Mack said. 

He said the new system allowed Eddy County access to statewide communications, the memo indicated. 

“Eddy County benefits by gaining access to the statewide system that will increase our interoperability with other agencies that are a part of the statewide system and still allows us the ability to communicate with other local agencies that haven’t joined the state system as of now,” Mack said.