The costs to communicate within Macomb keep going up as additional equipment is needed to bring the township’s current telephone and internet system – which Supervisor Mark Grabow once called “struggling, archaic technology” – up to the 21st century.
Last week, the Board of Trustees approved spending another $15,096 on new equipment that will improve internet services as well as bring the entire IT system up to date.
On Aug. 22, the . On Sept. 12, the Board OK’d another $53,628 to update the system.
“We were in the middle of implementing our $300,000 upgrade to our backbone when it was discovered that some of our facilities are not quite as compatible as we had initially thought,” said Clerk Michael Koehs. “There is no sense in buying all of this new stuff if it moves at the rate of the slowest piece of equipment.”
The upgrade includes an inter-township phone system, faster wireless networking, greater data storage, teleconferencing, and more. The new system also ensures the township keeps up with new, changing technologies.
The township has been working with its IT Department as well as Wyoming, MI-based IT provider ISI to develop a permanent fix after the township lost phone service for a period of time last year due to the old system.
The target date for the system to be in place was Thanksgiving, but Koehs said that’s not likely. The system, although installed, still needs to be tested. It’s possible it might be ready by Christmas.
At a previous meeting, Koehs said the IT upgrades will likely save the township $250,000 over the next five years.