SPRINGFIELD / EUGENE, Ore. (KMTR) -- A major data software overhaul for Springfield and Eugene's police, fire and court systems may help the agencies get a lot more work done without adding staff.
Both cities are in the middle of replacing their old public safety records services. For Springfield, it comes with a price tag of $765,000. However, because the City of Springfield is working with the City of Eugene on the project, the two cities were able to reduce their replacement costs by about $1.26 million over the course of seven years.
For the police departments, the new system will allow officers to fill out reports in the field. They’ll also be able to enter electronic citations in the field for things like speeding tickets - that means no more carbon copy papers.
Springfield Information Technology Director Rod Lathrop says this is the biggest technological advancement for public safety since the police department installed laptops in their cars. Lathrop says city employees believe it will be the equivalent of adding one extra police officer to each shift.
“They don't have to re-enter all of that information on a piece of paper and then have a clerk later key it into the computer system. It will all become live as soon as they do it, kind of like a force multiplier. It just puts them back on the street that much sooner, so they can continue helping create a safer community,” says Rod Lathrop, Information Technology Director for the City of Springfield.
The new data system, which will be rolled out over the next year, will also allow dispatchers to see which units are closest to emergency calls through GPS tracking.
Springfield’s old public safety data system currently generates about $380,000 a year in maintenance costs. The city estimates this system will save it $155,000 each year just in system maintenance.