JAMESTOWN, N.D. — A 50-cent-per-month increase in the tax on landline telephone and cellphone connections approved by the North Dakota Legislature will generate about $10 million over two years, according to Duane Schell, director of the Network Services Division of the North Dakota Information Technology Department.
The money is earmarked for updates to the communications equipment used by dispatch centers and first responders around the state.
"It's not funded at a level where we can do everything," Schell said, referring to the amount of money raised by the tax and the project to update the radio network. "That's the challenge we have to figure out."
Jerry Bergquist, Stutsman County emergency manager, said the goal is to have a statewide radio network that allows direct communications between police or fire units no matter what agency they work for.