By: Contributor
6 September, 2013

Editor’s Note: Friction posts Taos County’s proposal to the Town of Taos re: participation in the controversial command center and PSAP management below. The county has consistently offered to compromise and work with the town re: annexation, PSAP (E911-Dispatch) emergency management, and in terms of the downtown arts and cultural district. Regardless of negotiations, it has become obvious to residents in both the town and county that the only solution to municipal government recalcitrance will be political. Town elections are coming up and the community desperately needs a new mayor and two new council members with open minds, who are interested in public service and honest government. 


1. LOCATION AND TERM: If the County elects to serve as interim fiscal agent on behalf of the JPA Board, then the County agrees to sublease 2,500 sf on the ground floor of Kit Carson Command Center from the Town for 2 years with the following conditions agreed to by the Town and County: no rent, no common space fees, and no building or property maintenance fees will be charged to the County or PSAP. These costs are the sole responsibility of the Town for the first two years, exclusive of the operational costs of the PSAP, or until the JPA Board approves a new lease or budget to address these costs. This sublease proposal is conditioned on the other terms of this proposal relating to the JPA and PSAP.

2. GOVERNANCE AND AUTHORITY: The Town of Taos, Taos County, Village of Questa and Taos Ski Valley agree to enter into a new JPA and to form a JPA Board of Directors within 6 months of this agreement to permanently administer the Taos Regional E-911 Combined Dispatch PSAP (“the PSAP”).

Under the JPA, the PSAP will be governed by an administrative/finance board consisting of the administrator of each jurisdiction and an operational board representing the public safety programs of each entity, dealing with personnel and day-to-day technical operations.

3. FISCAL AGENCY AND PERSONNEL: The County may elect after September 15th to assume interim fiscal agency, the PSAP designation and ownership/maintenance responsibility for all PSAP equipment on behalf of the JPA Board until the JPA agreement and JPA Board are approved (under Section #2, above) for a period not to exceed 6 months. Fiscal agency from that date forward shall be determined by the JPA Board.

The fiscal agent will effective immediately recruit, hire, supervise and evaluate the Dispatch Director and staff, as well as all day-to-day operations. Dispatch staff will become employees of the fiscal agent.

4. LEASES: The fiscal agent must then transfer the sublease with the Town to the new JPA Board as soon as a new JPA is adopted by all parties and the new JPA Board is formed. At least 6 months prior to the expiration of the sublease, the JPA Board, in its sole discretion, may either (a.) assume the balance of the current Town/KCEC lease/purchase agreement, (b.) negotiate a new lease with KCEC, or (c.) may elect such other options as might be available to the Board.

5. BUDGET: For the first two years, the County’s financial contribution to the PSAP shall not exceed the lesser of $371,000 or 55% of annual operating expenses after all other revenues,whichever is less. The Town’s financial contribution for the the first two years shall be the lesser of $371,000 or 45% of all PSAP annual operating costs after all other revenues; excluding any costs in identified in #1, above. The PSAP budget for the first 2 years shall not exceed $742,000 unless formally agreed to by the governing bodies of both the Town and County.

6. MOVING COSTS: The Town agrees that it will pay all moving costs related to the relocation of the E-911/Combined Dispatch/PSAP to the Kit Carson Command Center. The Town’s share of the JPA reserves may be used for this purpose (50% or less of the reserve balance).

7. OWNERSHIP AND DISSOLUTION: The parties to the JPA agree that the PSAP designation and all related equipment, leases, frequencies, licenses and funding were aquired on behalf of all the citizens and first responders of the region and must therefore, under the JPA, become and remain the common property of the collective members or entity created by the JPA in perpetuity. Further, that the JPA and all commonly held ownership interests established in the JPA may only be dissolved by an affirmative county-wide vote of the majority of voters of all member jurisdictions, or the mutual agreement of the governing bodies of all member jurisdictions.

8. If a JPA is not agreed to as provided in #2 above, within 6 months, Taos County shall have the option at any time thereafter on 90 days notice to terminate the sublease, in its sole discretion.

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