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New siren will be placed in Russellville

New siren will be placed in Russellville

October 5th, 2012 in News

Russellville was one of the few Cole County communities to own an emergency siren in its city limits.

Like Lohman and Centertown, the sirens were activated through the Jefferson City 911 Center after notice was given by the National Weather Service.

This fall, a new siren will be placed on the 2003-installed pole, behind city hall.

With no moving parts and digital equipment, the sirens will be easier to maintain.

More importantly, the audible alarm will be clearer and may be heard in a larger radius.

And the new sirens will be equipped with solar-powered batteries to ensure signal in the event of a power outage.

Russellville paid $5,427 to the Cole County Commission as its portion toward the total $28,750 cost for the siren.

"The council overwhelmingly wanted to take the opportunity to do this," said Russellville city clerk Karen Platter.

Each participating community outside Jefferson City - Wardsville, Taos, St. Thomas and St. Martins - paid $5,000.

In addition, each municipality paid a percentage based on the population served by its siren.

At a population of 946, Russellville represented 1.5 percent of the affected population and paid the additional $427.

St. Martins had 2.7 percent of the affected population costing an extra $780.

And Lohman paid $57 for a population of 126.

Lohman's digital siren needed only an upgrade to connect to the narrow-band radio signal used by the 911 Center. The commission contributed $500 toward the town's $2,100 total cost.

The county's replacement and installation of 15 sirens outside the Jefferson City limits will cost $351, 529.30, under an agreement with Meyer Electric.

Installations are underway, but some locations have hit rock, which will require more time, said West District Commissioner Chris Wrigley.

Bill Farr, Cole County Emergency Coordinator, encouraged the county commission to consider the project as Jefferson City had decided to upgrade its 45-year-old sirens.

No money was set aside in the county's capital improvements half-cent sales tax approved by voters in 2012.

However, the county was able to take advantage of the receivership fund former Cole County Circuit Judge Tom Brown transferred to them six years ago.

The approximately $1 million fund is designated for one-time purchases to benefit the community, Wrigley said.

Previous News Tribune reports contributed to this story.