By Ken de la Bastide Kokomo Tribune
---- — TIPTON – Sheriff John Moses wants to take the Tipton County Sheriff’s Department through another step in the new technology age of wireless communications.
Moses told the Tipton County Council this week he wants to install computers into the department’s patrol cars. He would like to have the computer installation done by the end of the year.
The department is awaiting approval from Indiana to be able to connect the computers with a statewide network of information including the running of license plates, vehicle registration, warrants and stolen vehicles.
Moses said he would be asking the council for an appropriation of $5,500 in October to cover a portion of the installation costs and would request the remaining funds in 2014.
The computers for the vehicles, which cost $17,000, came from the Commissary Fund, which derives its funding from the sale of items to inmates at the jail.
He said the cost to install the computers was approximately $11,300.
Moses said computers would be installed in 11 patrol cars and the county and city of Tipton would share the maintenance costs. The Tipton Police Department has computers in nine patrol cars.
“This would be beneficial to the department,” he said. “We would be connected to the state-wide network.”
Councilman James Powell said the installation cost should be paid entirely this year.
“We want to pay all the expenses we can this year,” Powell said.
Council members also agreed to prepare a new salary ordinance that will pay seven of the deputy’s $20 per month to use their personal cell phones while on duty.
Currently the department provides a cell phone at a cost of $7,000 per year.
“We need to have this in place by December,” Moses said. “It will cost $840 for the remainder of the year and I have money that can be transferred.”