Public Safety Communications is the initial answering point of all 911 calls for the City of San Angelo and Tom Green County. The mission of Public Safety Communications is to provide excellence in service in the area of police and fire department communications. PSC achieves this by employing highly motivated personnel, providing excellent training, and utilizing the latest equipment to provide a great service to the public, the firefighters and the police officers we serve.

City suing over SAPD records, dispatch system

The City of San Angelo filed suit against Spillman Technologies in a Tom Green County state district court Wednesday, seeking the recovery of more than $3.5 million. The City argues Spillman fraudulently misrepresented the functionality of its records management and computer-aided dispatch software and its qualifications to implement the system. It did so in an effort to induce the City to buy its product for the San Angelo Police and Fire Departments at a cost of $1.5 million to taxpayers.

Spillman’s representations that it could deliver a state-of-the-art software system for the City’s first responders were, in fact, misrepresentations. In its lawsuit, the City identifies 12 such misrepresentations Spillman made in its proposal to the City. Spillman’s software lacks much of the core functionality that was promised and does not perform reliably. The company assured it would provide software solutions that do not exist. Further, it lacked the ability to correct defects in the system once it was implemented. Those defects have increased response times, created officer safety issues and jeopardized the lives of our citizens and our first-responders.

In one instance, the system’s failure put the lives of San Angelo firefighters in danger. Firefighters responded to a call of a house fire on Jan. 13, unaware the SAPD had received a call of a man brandishing a rifle in the front yard of the same address, inviting a shootout with police. Firefighters were forced to scramble for cover when they arrived on the scene.

Such outcomes are simply unacceptable. Protecting the public is the City’s most fundamental responsibility and our highest priority.

The City does not make the decision to file suit lightly. From the time Spillman’s system went live in June 2016 through the early part of this year, SAPD personnel and the City’s Information Technology manager worked tirelessly to try to make the Spillman system work and to convince the company to live up to its contractual obligations.  Despite our efforts, Spillman continually failed to deliver on its promises or, in many cases, to even acknowledge problems that clearly exist. The nine months the City has used Spillman software has been fraught with false promises, unresolved complaints, empty assurances and fruitless negotiations, all related to a defective product that has resulted in the loss of millions of dollars in money and in man-hours.

With no working solution on the horizon, the City was left no choice but to seek redress in court. The City alleges four causes of action against Spillman, all of which are related to fraud and breach. Through this lawsuit, the City will vigorously pursue a recovery of the $1.5 million in costs it incurred under the contract, as well as the $2.375 million cost our taxpayers must now pay to purchase a replacement software system. The City is also seeking punitive damages, attorneys’ fees and court costs.

Careers in Public Safety Communications

Public Safety Communications emergency service dispatchers handle multiple assignments, including taking 911 calls for the City of San Angelo and Tom Green County. They also answer all non-emergency calls for the San Angelo Police and the San Angelo Fire departments, includeing all emergency medical services and volunteer fire department dispatches. 

Dispatchers are all TCLEOSE-certified telecommunicators, which enables them to access TLETS and other various databases.

Minimum qualifications

  • 18 years of age or older 
  • High school diploma or GED 
  • U.S. citizen 
  • Good moral character
  • Good financial credit 
  • No convictions for a felony offense or a history of criminal or improper conduct 
  • Must pass drug usage matrix assessment
  • Must pass a thorough background investigation and a polygraph exam 
  • Must successfully complete a typing test and dispatcher computer test

Current openings/how to apply

Openings are posted at cosatx.us/jobs and in the City's Human Resources Department on the second floor of City Hall, 72 W. College Ave. Call the HR Department at 325-657-4221 to inquire about openings and the application process. Applications are available in the HR offices or can be filled out online.

Benefits

Insurance:

Employees are covered by life, major medical and dental insurance. Family members are also eligible to be covered at the employee's expense.

Vacation: Accrued at 6.67 hours each month for years 1-5. After five years of service, 10 hours per month are accrued. Vacation cannot be taken within the first year of employment.

Holidays: Nine paid holidays per year.

Sick: 15 working days each year.
 
Retirement: Employees contribute 7 percent  of wages to the Texas Municipal Retirement System. The City of San Angelo contributes to employees' retirement at a ratio of 2-to-1. Employees are vested after 10 years of participation in TMRS.

Salary: $30,316 annually. Paid twice a month.