Columbia County will serve as the site of a pilot project for an emergency notification system using a local company's mass calling service.
County commissioners agreed this week to spend $15,000 with CallingPost - an Augusta company that can make 500 to 3,000 calls a minute.
"The mobility of it - the ability to use it from anywhere - is the best part," Emergency Services Director Pam Tucker said.
For example, had the county been using the system during January's snows, with one phone call the CallingPost system would have started a series of calls to county employees, letting them know what time offices would open.
CallingPost also can be used to call residents in a specific area - around a plant that is leaking chemicals, for example.
"The biggest service to the public is quicker warning," Tucker said.
The contract amount was $40,000, but CallingPost officials plan to use Columbia County as an example for other communities.
In other business, commissioners voted to require that some businesses - including construction companies - display a decal on company vehicles that shows occupational taxes have been paid.
Planning Director Jeff Browning said that a lot of businesses currently operating have not paid the tax.
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