County commissioners amend tower proposal

Moffat County commissioners amended a grant proposal Wednesday that, if approved by the state, would put a total of six 800-megahertz radio towers in the county.

The proposal, which asks for funding for three radio towers in Moffat County, will be sent to the Department of Local Affairs by early next week. DOLA is expected to review the grant proposal Tuesday.

Moffat County Emergency Management Coordinator Lar--ry Dalton said the towers would improve communication in the western end of the county for emergency responders.

The first draft of the proposal asked DOLA to fund two towers. The commissioners approved that draft in April.

Dalton boosted his request to three towers earlier this week when he found a way to get three towers for slightly more than two towers would cost.

"I can get more bang for the buck," Dalton said Tuesday.

Originally, Dalton's request asked for new radio tower sites in Vermillion and on Iles Mountain. The cost for those two sites combined would have been about $980,000.

After submitting the proposal, Dalton learned of two sites owned by Union Cellular which could be leased. One site is on Iles Mountain and the other near Brown's Park.

The amended proposal asks for three sites, a new site at Vermillion and leased sites at Isles Mountain and Brown's Park. The amended proposal would cost about $1.06 million.

Moffat County commissioners held a special meeting Wednesday to vote on the amendment. Commissioner Darryl Steele wasn't in attendance but Commissioners Saed Tayyara and Tom Gray voted in favor.

When the commissioners approved the original proposal in April, they were concerned the radio towers wouldn't work in the mountains.

But Gray and Tayyara said Wednesday they were no longer concerned with the towers' performance in the mountains.

"I feel that the communications need to be upgraded," Tayyara said after the meeting.

Brandon Johansson can be reached at bjohansson@craigdailypress.com

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