Significant turnover reported in 2014 for Dane County 911 Center

Turnover numbers come out at possible last meeting of center board
Significant turnover reported in 2014 for Dane County 911 Center
Dane County 911 Center Board meeting

Nearly one-third of the Dane County 911 Center’s staff has left their jobs this year, officials said.

“No surprise; 2014’s been a tough year,” 911 Center Director John Dejung said.

Dejung told the 911 Center Board that 23 911 Center communicators who started the year at the 911 Center had left their positions.

The news comes after records released to News 3 showed 65 percent of all 911 Center employees were working an average of 17 hours of overtime per pay period over the summer. Toward the end of the summer, the 911 Center brought eight newly trained workers into the center, and figures were expected to decline going into the fall.

Dejung’s monthly report to the 911 Center Board also included an empty sheet asking for “ideas on desired/helpful information going forward.” One member said that was somewhat surprising given Dejung’s past comments.

“The Center Board has asked for much information and made several suggestions over the past year, and this would be a good place to start,” Verona Police Chief Bernie Coughlin said. “We have also been criticized for doing so, so asking us to provide more is quite interesting.”

Twenty-four years after its incorporation, Monday’s meeting could have been the Center Board’s last, as the Dane County Board of Supervisors is set to take up an ordinance amendment on Thursday changing the board’s role to advisory and giving operational control to the county executive’s office.

“Whatever the result going forward,” Dejung said, “I’m looking for feedback. Just jot some notes down and send them my way.”

Maple Bluff Fire Chief Josh Ripp, the 911 Center Board chairman, said he was disappointed that it appeared likely that the board would become advisory.

“This group as we know it today may not be meeting again,” he said. “As much as we’ve gotten beaten up over the years, I still think this is the better way of doing things. (We’re) able to vet things out and find out where the issues are.”

The Dane County Board of Supervisors is set to vote on Ordinance Amendment 56 Thursday night.