West Palm Beach to spend $5 Million on new radios

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shadcall

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By Tony Doris - Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

WEST PALM BEACH —

Capping years of police and citizen concern over a multimillion-dollar police radio system whose spotty signals and dead zones could strand officers at crucial moments, the city commission Monday approved spending more than $5 million more for a reworked system that promises to allow West Palm Beach police to communicate reliably with each other and neighboring cities.

The city has already spent $5 million for its troubled OpenSky system, in addition to $235,000 in annual loan payments. Under a new agreement hammered out by city and Harris Corp., the city will spend an additional $5.19 million for a system with 525 Harris P-25 radios that will interface with the OpenSky system.

Also recommended by the city’s staff Monday but not yet voted upon: plans to remove two old radio towers and install two new ones, near the East Central Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility near Florida’s Turnpike and at Fire Station No. 2 on Dixie Highway in the south end. The city estimated the total cost of towers and radio systems at $8.16 million.

In April 2013, city commissioners gave Mayor Jeri Muoio the OK to negotiate a new deal with the consortium of local cities and towns using the OpenSky radio network, then negotiate for a system that would cost the city about $5.6 million on top of the $5 million it already has spent.
The city’s 1986 analog police radio system is so old that managers have had to resort to seeking replacement parts on the auction website eBay, the department’s union representative had told commissioners.

Last July, Sgt. Louis Penque begged the city to either dissolve its consortium with other departments using the OpenSky radio network, merge with the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office system, or buy a new system altogether. “Something needs to be done a year ago,” Penque said.

All the cities in Palm Beach County were part of the consortium in 1999, but only a few remained by the time it went online. West Palm Beach’s system never has been activated because of issues with the city’s tallest, densest buildings, which can interfere with radio signals.

Under the plan now in place, West Palm Beach would remain with the consortium, which includes Palm Beach Gardens, Jupiter, Juno Beach, Palm Beach and Atlantis, but would run a the more advanced P-25 system, while the other cities run the OpenSky system. Both systems are made by Harris Corp.
West Palm Beach and the other cities would share some equipment, including the core processor that will run both OpenSky and the P-25 system, whose “open-platform” design allows it to communicate better with other systems, including the county’s Motorola system

The Palm Beach Post reported in May 2011 that West Palm Beach officials had buried reports documenting problems with OpenSky in 2009 and 2010. Following The Post’s stories, the Palm Beach County Office of Inspector General launched an audit of the consortium.
The results, released in December 2012, raised questions about the purchase, operation and oversight of the OpenSky system by the consortium, but also found that the consortium had worked effectively with Harris to overcome early problems and get OpenSky working in all the cities but West Palm Beach.
After two hours of discussion, the commission voted unanimously to approve the P-25 system; be part of the multicity radio consortium; to approve a loan of up to $10 million from TD Bank; and to appropriate funds for the initial payment of the radio system.
 

MTS2000des

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and why not just spend the money on some subscriber radios and console upgrades and join the PBC TRS already in place, which provides superior body worn coverage throughout the county and surrounding areas versus procuring, building out and maintaining a disparate network?

If I didn't know any better I'd say this sounds like some metro Atlanta flavor of separatism going on.
 

rapidcharger

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See EB...
This is happening everywhere regardless of the demos or politics. Red or blue, doesn't matter. Broken calculators know no boundaries.

I've pointed out in the past that the populated (non swamp/ non water) land area of WPB is only about 10 square miles. They've certainly packed a lot of waste into each one of those miles. In addition to what they've already spent, here's an additional $500k per mile of coverage needed. They could put 2 dozen DMR repeaters in each square mile, provide all the sub units they need, network them all together and call it a day for a fraction!

And I seem to remember hearing the other day of when Harris gave one customer a whole new set of radios at no charge because they didn't like their speaker mics. Maybe that was EFH Johnson.
 
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Erik. This is where I live. The reason, politely stated, is the Mayor is "uneducated".
The mayor being ignorant means only one solution.... to educate him or her. The way to do that is to find as many links and stories about Brokensky not working and email the mayor and take it to the board meeting and present it.
 

RayAir

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OpenSky works fine if implemented and installed correctly.
It has a unique design that may require more towers.

Tyco/ M/A-Com didnt have a grip on the technology and it caused lots of problems. The company that bought M/A-Com, Harris, had to re-engineer the system. Harris was able to turn OpenSky in to an efficient 4:1 digital TRS.

Harris since came out with OpenSky2, which has all the improvements and is a high quality, efficient and secure radio system.
 
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OpenSky works fine if implemented and installed correctly.
It has a unique design that may require more towers.

Tyco/ M/A-Com didnt have a grip on the technology and it caused lots of problems. The company that bought M/A-Com, Harris, had to re-engineer the system. Harris was able to turn OpenSky in to an efficient 4:1 digital TRS.

Harris since came out with OpenSky2, which has all the improvements and is a high quality, efficient and secure radio system.
Still sucks, and besides its NOT P25 compliant, as is not any Provoice, basically any system that is Harris proprietary is not P25 compliant, which means they will not be allowed by the FCC in the Future. Makes my so Happy!!!!!
 

kayn1n32008

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S basically any system that is Harris proprietary is not P25 compliant, which means they will not be allowed by the FCC in the Future. Makes my so Happy!!!!!

The FCC could care less...

Motorola type 2 trunking is also not P25 compliant(P16 compliant just like EDACS) Nor is DMR or NEXTEDGE, yet these modes will be here for a long time. iDEN is also not P25 compliant either.

P25 compliance, or lack there of, has nothing to do with the FCC,
Please do not spread false info.


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The FCC could care less...

Motorola type 2 trunking is also not P25 compliant(P16 compliant just like EDACS) Nor is DMR or NEXTEDGE, yet these modes will be here for a long time. iDEN is also not P25 compliant either.

P25 compliance, or lack there of, has nothing to do with the FCC,
Please do not spread false info.


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My mistake for not clarifying... P25 compliance... as far as Public Safety TRSs go... Not all TRS type by any means. LOL
 

kayn1n32008

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My mistake for not clarifying... P25 compliance... as far as Public Safety TRSs go... Not all TRS type by any means. LOL

Even then, the FCC assuming licensed correctly, does not give a rats *** what system a entity uses. APCO is the one pushing P25, and DHS will not give grants if not P25 capable... Nothing to do with FCC


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Even then, the FCC assuming licensed correctly, does not give a rats *** what system a entity uses. APCO is the one pushing P25, and DHS will not give grants if not P25 capable... Nothing to do with FCC


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FCC, DHS, or my local PD. It doesn't matter who its from, who created it, or what not. All that matters is that the "P25 Compliant" aspect is still valid.

Period.
 

kayn1n32008

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In the post below you state:

...basically any system that is Harris proprietary is not P25 compliant, which means they will not be allowed by the FCC in the Future...

I pointed out that the FCC has nothing to do with whether they are used or allowed and that it is DHS that is saying systems must be P25 compliant/capable to receive grants. You then post:

FCC, DHS, or my local PD. It doesn't matter who its from, who created it, or what not. All that matters is that the "P25 Compliant" aspect is still valid.



Period.

*shakes head*
Try to make coherent posts...


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In the post below you state:




I pointed out that the FCC has nothing to do with whether they are used or allowed and that it is DHS that is saying systems must be P25 compliant/capable to receive grants. You then post:




*shakes head*
Try to make coherent posts...


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WTF is wrong with you? The first quote is older which means it would have been replaced by my later post which was a response. Quit trying to psycho-analyze all my posts. We are all here to discuss the radio comms hobby. And NOBODY is any better then somebody else.
 

kayn1n32008

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WTF is wrong with you? The first quote is older which means it would have been replaced by my later post which was a response. Quit trying to psycho-analyze all my posts. We are all here to discuss the radio comms hobby. And NOBODY is any better then somebody else.

Not psyco-analyzing anything. I am only pointing out the bad info you are representing in your posts. It has nothing to do with being right or wrong, only that truthful, factual information is shared.

You are correct, nobody is better than anyone else.


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