Vehicles top priority for FCSO

Fulton County Sheriff Richard Giardino outlines his proposed 2021 capital projects for the Board of Supervisors’ Public Safety Committee Monday at the County Office Building in Johnstown. (The Leader-Herald/Michael Anich)

JOHNSTOWN — Vehicles are among the top priorities of the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office’s proposed $226,000 capital plan for 2022.

Sheriff Richard Giardino presented four main prioritized items he would like to see funded with capital money to the Board of Supervisors’ Public Safety Committee Monday at the County Office Building.

Since 2016, he said the Board of Supervisors has funded projects for 15 sheriff’s vehicles.

“We didn’t have any vehicles in the budget last year,” Giardino said.

In his originally-proposed package, the sheriff had a total up-fit for a Dodge Charger at $58,000 listed. But he removed the item because the vehicle was totaled in a June 22 electrical fire. He said the vehicle will be replaced by the New York Municipal Insurance Reciprocal.

“A lot of the wires actually melted and burned,” Giardino told supervisors.

County Administrative Officer Jon Stead said that for damaged police vehicles, NYMIR does a “full replacement vehicle.”

Meanwhile, Giardino’s remaining list of four capital projects still remain topheavy with police vehicle items. Priorities one and two are identical $69,000 total up-fits for two Chevy Tahoes. He said the sheriff’s office held off last year on repairing some of the vehicle damages, which include deputy patrols through tough roads and snow in some isolated parts of Fulton County.

“We get a lot of undercarriage damage,” Giardino said.

He said the work on the Tahoes, which sit up higher on the road, should go a long way for the future.

“We should be able to cut down on maintenance,” the sheriff said.

As priority three for 2022, Giardino chose a $28,000 project to improve Black Creek’s touch screen system in the housing unit of the Fulton County Correctional Facility.

He said there are five control centers in the jail that are 15 years old and older.

The fourth capital project is a $60,000 project involving Archive Storage System Records Management. The sheriff’s office is required to maintain certain records.

Giardino said his department currently maintains rooms downstairs at the sheriff’s office on Route 29 that contains old metal shelving of copies of reports. He said this project will involve an entirely new storage system in which copies are made of records.

He called the project “expensive,” but able to cut a decade off of work involving the old storage system.

“It will more than double our storage,” Undersheriff Dan Izzo said of the proposed system.

The committee supported the sheriff’s projects, which will now be forwarded to the Capital Projects Committee. That committee meets at 1 p.m. July 22 at the County Office Building.

In other action, the committee authorized acceptance of a $23,933 budget amendment for a state 2020-21 Public Safety Answering Points (PSAP) Operations Grant. The full board will finalize the resolution July 12.

Giardino said the 2021 budget estimate for the actual PSAP funding was $150,000. But he said the Governor’s Office recently released actual figures that showed Fulton County will receive $173,933 — a difference of $23,933.

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