Las Cruces, NM – At a City Council meeting this week, officials discussed the possibility to create a third level of emergency phone service.
The Mesilla Valley Regional Dispatch Authority experienced outages on December fourteenth and twenty-seventh after Qwest Communication lines were cut. The cuts shut down telephone, Internet and most other communications services for thousands of New Mexicans for more than three hours.
Erring on the side of caution, Mayor Ken Miyagishima suggested the city install four voice over the internet protocol or VOIP lines from Comcast. The lines would be located at the New Mexico State Police Communications Center near the University Golf Course.
Miyagishima says he wants a third backup plan to be implemented as soon as possible and estimates the cost is manageable.
Miyagishima-"$2400 is a small price to pay for insurance to make sure that we have yet a third back up line. I don't want to wait until Friday, if something was to go down. We have the opportunity; we can come up with $200 a month. I think it's imperative that we move fast and make sure we have something in place. "
A final report on the outages and backup plans will be presented on January 11th at the Dona Ana County Commission meeting.