Employee Status Updated: 8/14/2018 12:00 AM Normal
Office Status: Normal
Employee Information

NextGen Phase I

Update #23 - 1\7\14

The updated as-built drawings were accepted ;by the Technical Review Team. Harris provided this data to their printing department for production. The Technical Review Team completed the review and accepted ;spares list provided by Harris. Additional spares which are not currently on-hand in the county have been ordered by Harris. The "invalid user group" issue with Sheriff's Office radios immediately after a Simulcast Select is performed ;has been identified as a software issue which has been forwarded to Harris Software to provide a solution. A temporary workaround was implemented in December ;and will remain in-place until the software fix is issued.
The Final Acceptance for Phase I was signed and forwarded to Harris as all the contractual requirements for this portion of the project have been met.
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The profile updates to the Sheriff's Office radios are nearly completed with a couple of straggler radios still remaining. ;
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Additional radios were ;installed at the ;PAX River Fire Department to ensure adequate communications are available for any Mutual Aid responses.
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The responses to out Request for Proposal (RFP) ;to perform the ;work ;necessary for the Minor Site Plans to be completed on the remaining 7 tower locations has been awarded. ;As Lease Agreements are signed work necessary to obtain permits can begin. ;

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Please direct your radio users that experience problems to ;report these ;to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com. ;



Update #22 - 12\4\13

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The alarm ;notification system was configured and tested. Notices of system problems will ;now be automatically forwarded to designated support staff ;to help ;improve response times when critical errors ;occur within the system. ;
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The vendor completed the labeling of ;all cables at all sites and updated the as-built drawings. The as-builts are being reviewed by the Technical Review Team prior to acceptance.
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The Technical Review Team is expecting to complete the review of the proposed spares list this week. Upon receipt of the approved spares list the vendor will process the order and deliver to the county the additional equipment identified on the updated list that has not already been received by the county.
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We continue to perform the profile updates to the Sheriff's Office radios (< 30 remain). While there have been no reports of ccScan issues on any radio that has been updated with the latest profile we have identified a "invalid user group" issue with Sheriff's Office radios immediately after a Simulcast Select is performed on the system. Harris Engineering is attempting to resolve this issues and is currently working on a software fix to correct. A temporary work around was implemented last week and will remain in-place until the fix is provided.
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Additional radios are being provided to PAX River Fire Department to ensure adequate communications are available for any Mutual Aid responses.
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The responses to out Request for Proposal (RFP) ;to perform the ;work ;necessary for the Minor Site Plans to be completed on the remaining 7 tower locations have been received, have been graded, and returned to procurement for award. ;As Lease Agreements are signed work necessary to obtain permits can begin. ;

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Please direct your radio users that experience problems to ;report these ;to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com. ;
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Update #21 - 11\16\13

This past Monday we completed our transfer testing to the Backup Control Point after 96 hours of operations. As part of that effort we took the opportunity to perform an upgrade the IOS on all the Cisco routers on the system to the most current "approved" version. Additionally, we incorporated a few configuration changes in these routers which take advantage of the new IOS capabilities and improve system performance.
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We continue to perform the profile updates to the Sheriff's Office radios. While there have been no reports of ccScan issues on any radio that has been updated with the latest profile we have identified a "invalid user group" issue with Sheriff's Office radios immediately after a Simulcast Select is performed on the system. Harris Engineering is attempting to resolve this issues and is currently working on a software fix to correct. A temporary work around is being tested and should be put in place this week until the software fix can be applied.
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Testing for ;outside RF interference ;has concluded and it has been determined that there is no significant interference from ;outside communication sources ;which are affecting our radio communications. ;
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The responses to out Request for Proposal (RFP) ;to perform the ;work ;necessary for the Minor Site Plans to be completed on the remaining 7 tower locations have been received and are being reviewed by the Technical Review Team for this contract. ;
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The State of Maryland ;is scheduled to install the Code Plug for the Motorola XTS Radios used in MSP helicopters soon. ;
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As we near completion of Phase I it should be noted the following accomplishments that were achieved in this portion of the project:

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· The design, configuration, testing, and distribution of 1,503 radios within the county (Sheriff, Fire\EMS, Public Safety, DPW, etc.).

· The design, configuration, installation, and testing of equipment at three of our existing tower sites – Leonardtown, Mechanicsville, and California.

· The design, configuration, permitting, installation, and testing of the new Greg Adams Tower facility in Valley Lee, Bethune, and Three Notch tower sites.

· The successful coordination (with the State of Maryland, Charles, and Calvert County’s), design, configuration, installation and testing of P25 radios for MSP and other state agencies operating in St. Mary’s County.

· The installation of upgraded dispatcher consoles at both the Emergency Communications Center (ECC) and our Backup Bunker (6 or 4 new full consoles).

· The installation of the Uninterrupted Power System (UPS) at our Backup Bunker.

· Independent Backup Bunker operations without the need for the ECC facility.

· The installation of a High Capacity Redundant Microwave Ring.

· The addition of a backup radio system master control site at Valley Lee.

· Over-the-Air Programming (OTAP) software.

· Encryption of Police Communications

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Please direct your radio users that experience problems to ;report these ;to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com.

Update #20 - 10\23\13
At approximately 10:35 this morning there was a power supply failure at the Mechanicsville tower that affected all radio communications for about 20 minutes. After identifying the problem at the location, ;spare equipment was configured and installed which corrected the problem. When the power supply failed the unit tripped the circuit breaker to the communications chassis resulting in a loss of the 4 possible system control channels. This is the first system wide communications interruption ;we experienced since moving to the new system.
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Several profile updates ;have been ;completed. The profile update included the removal of the old EDACs talk groups, ;the addition ;FE SAFE to the "B switch", the addition of ;NPSPAC Direct Channels, and unlocking the keypad on startup. The updates have been ;performed on the radios at Company 1, 19, 2, 29, 3, 38, 39, 4, 49, 5, 59, 6, ;7, 79, ;and 9 and includes ;the configuration changes recommended by Harris ;to reduce the registration time for radios accessing the system. There are several stragglers radios, ALS, ;and the Sheriff's Office that still require the update. There have been no reports of ccScan issues on any radio that has been updated with the latest profile.
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Testing for ;outside RF interference ;which may be affecting our radio communications has been suspended until all the 1st responder radios have been updated to the latest profiles. ;
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The Request for Proposal (RFP) ;to perform the ;work ;necessary for the Minor Site Plans to be completed on the remaining 7 tower locations has been released by the County Procurement Office. An award is expected in Nov-Dec. ;
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The State of Maryland ;is scheduled to install the Code Plug for the Motorola XTS Radios used in MSP helicopters soon. ;
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Please direct your radio users that experience problems to ;report these ;to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com. ;

Update #19 - 10\11\13


Several profile updates ;have been ;completed this week. The profile update included the removal of the old EDACs talk groups, ;the addition ;FE SAFE to the "B switch", the addition of ;NPSPAC Direct Channels, and unlocking the keypad on startup. A second round of updates was performed on the radios at Company 3, 4, 7, and 9 which has configuration changes recommend by Harris which ;may reduce the registration time for radios accessing the system.
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Test equipment has been operational since last Wednesday which will help determine if there is any outside RF interference ;which may be affecting our radio communications (ccScan and slow registration of radios). ;The initial ;logs indicate an intermittent activity ;radio Push-to-Talk (PTT) from our system radios. ;Radio Technicians with ;computers attached to portable radios (to log radio operations) ;test drove for several days this week in the Lexington Park area ;in an attempt to ;capture data on ;the ;ccScan issue reported. Unfortunately, we were not able to reproduce the problem ;but, will continue until the data is captured.
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The Request for Proposal (RFP) ;to perform the ;work ;necessary for the Minor Site Plans to be completed on the remaining 7 tower locations. An award is expected in Nov-Dec. ;
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The State of Maryland ;is scheduled to install the Code Plug for the Motorola XTS Radios used in MSP helicopters soon. ;
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Please direct your radio users that experience problems to ;report these ;to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com. ;
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Update #18 - 10\2\13

Our first attempt to push profile updates was completed this week with the Hollywood Volunteer Fire Department (Mobiles and portables) and Leonardtown Volunteer Fire Department (mobiles). ;93% of the radios ;were successfully reprogrammed "over-the-air" without issues. The profile update includes the removal of the old EDACs talk groups, ;the addition ;FE SAFE to the "B switch", the addition of ;NPSPAC Direct Channels, and unlocking the keypad on startup. ;
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Test equipment arrived this morning which will help determine if there is any outside RF interference ;which may be affecting our radio communications. There have been recent reports of a some radios going into ccScan ;in the Lexington Park and Ridge Fire Department areas. System logs indicate an intermittent carrier detect without any corresponding radio Push-to-Talk (PTT). This may be an indication of ;some outside ;transmission on our assigned frequency(ies) affecting our operations. It will take a several days to capture the data from several locations to determine if there ;are any possible interference issues. ;
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The State of Maryland ;is scheduled to install the Code Plug for the Motorola XTS Radios used in MSP helicopters within the next two weeks. ;
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There are two touch screen monitor issues that are outstanding which are preventing the final Acceptance signoff of the ECC Consoles install. The RMA for this gear has been submitted.
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Please direct your radio users that experience problems to ;report these ;to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com. We cannot correct problems that are not reported and we are not aware exist.


Update #17 - 9\25\13
The second ;countywide Signal Strength and TDI measurement drive around was ;completed last week. The replacement of the GPS receiver at Mechanicsville and subsequent timing adjustments have significantly improved radio communications and we ;see this reflected in the results of the drive testing data. ;
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The State of Maryland provided us with the Code Plug for the Motorola XTS Radios (used in MSP helicopters and Charles County). We forwarded these files to Calvert and Charles County late last week. ;
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Radio testing with Charles County was ;successfully performed this week. ;All the radio id's that Charles County have provided us have been added to our system and are active. Charles County is developing a plan to install the new code plug, talk groups, and encryption into their radios. ;
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The final outstanding issue with the Microwave Acceptance signoff has been resolved.
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There are two touch screen monitor issues that are outstanding which are preventing the final Acceptance signoff of the ECC Consoles install.
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Most of the remaining reports of issues ;seem to be related to known areas of coverage difficulties (Myrtle Point, Hollywood, Country Lakes, Golden Beach). ;We can expect these areas to improve significantly when additional towers are installed (Phases II and III) but, will ;continue to make sure our current operations are functioning as best as possible with our current transmission sites (California, Leonardtown, Three Notch, Valley Lee, Mechanicsville, and Bethune). ;
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Please direct your radio users that experience problems to ;report these ;to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com. We cannot correct problems that are not reported and we are not aware exist.

Update #16 - 9\13\13
The second ;countywide Signal Strength and TDI measurement drive around was initiated on Wednesday morning and is expected to be completed early next week. The replacement of the GPS receiver at Mechanicsville and subsequent timing adjustments have significantly improved radio communications and we ;expect to see this reflected in the results of the drive testing once completed. ;
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Consolette and NPSPAC testing with Charles County was ;performed this week. ;Dispatching protocols are being modified to reflect the results of these tests, and will be ;implemented once accepted by all parties.
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The State of Maryland successfully tested the Code Plug for the Motorola XTS Radios (used in MSP helicopters and Charles County). We have requested that the state provide us with the Code Plug which we will share with our neighbors upon receipt. ;
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Most of the remaining reports of issues ;seem to be related to known areas of coverage difficulties (Myrtle Point, Hollywood, Country Lakes, Golden Beach). ;We can expect these areas to improve significantly when additional towers are installed (Phases II and III) but, will ;continue to make sure our current operations are functioning as best as possible with our current transmission sites (California, Leonardtown, Three Notch, Valley Lee, Mechanicsville, and Bethune). ;
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Please direct your radio users that experience problems to ;report these ;to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com. We cannot correct problems that are not reported and we are not aware exist.

Update #15 - 9\10\13
We traced ;the problem with communications in the central and north end of the county to a defective GPS Receiver at Mechanicsville Site this equipment has been replaced with the on-hand Spare GPS Receiver. Issues have drastically diminished and communications have improved significantly.
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Technicians are concentrating efforts in the south end to addresses reports for radio registration problems, and ccscan in areas which we believe should not be experiencing these problems.
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The ;countywide Signal Strength and TDI measurement drive around was completed at ;the end of last week and helped us identify the and correct the issues detailed above. We will initiate another countywide drive later this week and expect to complete by early next week.
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Our Dispatchers ;returned to the Main Communications Center last ;Tuesday. ;
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The radio operational testing with Prince Georges County was not accomplished last week and will be rescheduled at a later date.
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Most of the remaining reports of issues ;seem to be related to known areas of coverage difficulties (Myrtle Point, Hollywood, Country Lakes, Golden Beach). ;We can expect these areas to improve significantly when additional towers are installed (Phases II and III) but, will ;continue to make sure our current operations are functioning as best as possible with our current transmission sites (California, Leonardtown, Three Notch, Valley Lee, Mechanicsville, and Bethune). ;
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Please direct your radio users that experience problems to ;report these ;to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com. We cannot correct problems that are not reported and we are not aware exist.


Update #14 - 9\1\13
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We made another modification to the system this past ;Wednesday corrected a Bit Error Rate (BER) problem we believe was affecting radio transmissions. Subsequent monitoring of radio communications indicate that P25 radio communications ;have improved. ;
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Our Dispatchers should be moving back into the Main Communications Center for operations on Tuesday. Dispatch operations have been being performed from the bunker since 8\5. The bunker is much smaller and not as nice a facility so folks will be happy with this move back to our Main site.
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On Wednesday we are scheduled to perform radio operational testing with Prince Georges County. We are using the same test plan and ;process that were used with MSP and Calvert County which have both been successfully completed.
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We started the ;countywide Signal Strength and TDI measurement drive around and expect to complete this by the end of this coming (short week). Once this data is collected and analyzed we will work to make additional adjustments to further improve ;communications. Most of the recent reports of issues ;seem to be related to known areas of coverage difficulties (Myrtle Point, Hollywood, Country Lakes, Golden Beach). ;We can expect these areas to improve significantly when additional towers are installed (Phases II and III) but, will ;continue to make sure our current operations are functioning as best as possible with our current transmission sites (California, Leonardtown, Three Notch, Valley Lee, Mechanicsville, and Bethune). ;
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We continued ;our work with MSP on configuring radios to send a transmission end signal to our system to correct a talkgroup ;hang open issue that we have seen occur 4 times since the 8\5. Once their radios are retouched this issue should be addressed.
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We are still performing the process to "warm start" all our encrypted radios (mobiles and portables). The "warm start" is a remotely activated reset of the encryption features of the radios and this process will take several days to complete as the radios must be turned on to receive the reset command. This effort will continue into next week.

Please direct your radio users that experience problems to ;report these ;to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com. We cannot correct problems that are not reported and we are not aware exist.

Update #13 - 8\23\13

Today we successfully completed the testing of Calvert code plug configured for their mobile P25 compliant radios.

We made a significant modification to the system parameters on Wednesday which corrected a frequency conflict which users have reported in fringe coverage areas. Subsequent testing in these areas indicate that P25 radio communications have improved. The countywide Signal Strength and TDI measurement drive around will start next week.

Much of the past two weeks have been spent identifying and correcting a problem between the MSP low band to 800MHz connection. We thought that this was corrected but the issue appeared again this morning. We are working with MSP and they are scheduled to be onsite Tuesday to make additional adjustments.

On Monday we started the process to "warm start" all our encrypted radios (mobiles and portables). The "warm start" is a remotely activated reset of the encryption features of the radios and this process will take several days to complete as the radios must be turned on to receive the reset command. This effort will continue through the weekend and into next week.

Please direct your radio users that experience problems to report these to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com. We cannot correct problems that are not reported and we are not aware exist.

Update #12 - 8\21\13

Much of the past week was spent identifying and correcting a problem with the MSP low band to 800MHz connection. We believe that this has been corrected as of last night and will continue to monitor.

On Monday we started the process to "warm start" all our encrypted radios (mobiles and portables). The "warm start" is a remotely activated reset of the encryption features of the radios and this process will take several days to complete as the radios must be turned on to receive the reset command.

We are entering P-25 compatible radios owned by and operating in Calvert, Charles, and Prince Georges counties onto the St. Mary's system. We provided each of our neighbors with the code plug that was successfully tested with MSP and will use the same testing protocols to confirm the successful interoperability of their radios on our system. Since Prince George's County already has a P25 system we provided our P25 ID's for Police, Fire and EMS to be added to their system. Getting these P25 compatible radios operational and tested on our system is our highest priority for enhancing our interoperability Mutual Aid operations in St. Mary's County.

While we expect significant improvements in radio communications in the Bethune and Valley Lee areas radio users are noticing some changes in the footprint of our existing tower sites in Leonardtown, Mechanicsville, Dameron, and California. These changes are a result of the new antennas, antenna patterns, and to a lesser degree the differences in Analog to Digital radio systems. While these differences are not shown on computer models to be huge, they do exist and users may notice areas where the old EDACS had communications and the new P25 does not. As we complete NEXTGEN Phases II and III the majority (95%) of these holes will be filled. We are extremely confident that at the completion of all three phases the radio system will provide the safe, efficient, and reliable communications for our first responders.

One issue reported several times is the varying volume levels that radio users are receiving. Much of this problem can be resolved by ensuring that all users speak directly into the mic positioned not more than 6 inches from the mouth. The online training courses explain in detail why this is so important and also gives a very good overview of the P25 system. Please encourage your members to take advantage of these free courses at https://www.harrisrftraining.com/enlighten/registration.html?registrationCode=stmry.

Please direct your radio users that experience problems to report these to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com. We cannot correct problems that are not reported and we are not aware exist.

Update #11 - 8\14\13


During last weeks electrical storm, we believe that the bunker was struck by lightening. The strike resulted in a power blip in the facility which all the communications, CAD, and telco gear recovered without issues. We did lose some ancillary gear (weather station) but, nothing that directly effects 911 operations. This is the second weather related facility issue we have experienced in the past month. Last month the heat effected our main EOC's air conditioning units and caused a blackout which forced us to move our operations to the backup bunker two weeks prior to our system migration. Each of these incidents show that while we are not immune to these unexpected events our systems and protocols allow for operations to resume quickly with minimal service interruptions.

By late last week we completed the volume adjustments for the pagers. Each company's paging tone was tested and working with a member from each department and\or squad these levels were adjusted.

While we expect significant improvements in radio communications in the Bethune and Valley Lee areas radio users are noticing some changes in the footprint of our existing tower sites in Leonardtown, Mechanicsville, Dameron, and California. These changes are a result of the new antennas, antenna patterns, and to a lesser degree the differences in Analog to Digital radio systems. While these differences are not shown on computer models to be huge, they do exist and users may notice areas where the old EDACS had communications and the new P25 does not. As we complete NEXTGEN Phases II and III the majority (95%) of these holes will be filled. We are extremely confident that at the completion of all three phases the radio system will provide the safe, efficient, and reliable communications for our first responders.

One issue that has been reported several times is the varying volume levels that radio users are being received. Much of this problem can be resolved by ensuring that all users speak directly into the mic positioned not more than 6 inches from the mouth. The online training courses explain in detail why this is so important and also gives a very good overview of the P25 system. Please encourage your members to take advantage of these free courses.

Finally, while not directly related to the Radio System migration we have been working with Verizon to resolve the text paging issue which appeared late last week. We have confirmed that our CAD system is sending the text messages to the vendor but, there have been several instances where these messages have been rejected or dropped. Verizon has informed us that they have three engineers working the issue. In each instance the problem seems to have self-corrected and so far we have not been told what is causing the problem. We will continue to work with Verizon on this issue.

Please continue reporting problems to the helpdesk@stmarysmd.com.

Update #10 - 8\7\13
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With all known system issues resolved, we started working this afternoon on optimizing the system coverage. These adjustments have corrected the radio coverage in some areas where users may have noticed issues earlier this week. It should be noted that there is likely some coverage differences with the new system from the old system and that coverage will continue to improve as we implement Phase II and Phase III of the system.

Police simulcast is not working correctly. We are currently dual dispatching police and have worked with MarylandFirst to identify the configuration needed to be loaded into the MSP radios which will allow simulcasts to be heard on MSP radios. This configuration load is being scheduled by MarylandFirst and is a change they need to make to their radios.

Scanners - Radio transmissions on the NEXTGEN Fire/EMS Dispatch Talk Channel can still be heard on existing scanners. All existing radio scanners can continue to be used for FIRE &
EMS Page Alerting purposes as all communications on the Fire/EMS Dispatch Talk Channel will still be broadcast over the 154.980 Mhz Frequency. Since the NEXTGEN system is a digital system, talk groups and encrypted operations cannot be processed by analog scanners. More information on the scanners can be viewed at www.stmarysmd.com\radio - please share this with your members.

Update #9 - 8\6\13

We became aware that page tones are dropping when multiple pages are initiated. It appears that the timing between tones was too close together so we increased the spacing between the tones and tested dropping multiple tones to all companies and squads successfully..

We have completed balancing the mutual aid audio levels between all conventional "8Call" frequencies on the system.

There are several radios that have reported issues on the system. Of these, about a third are radios with encryption key issues (Sheriff and CDC units). We are working through this list and correcting all radio issues as they are reported.

Police simulcast is not working correctly. We are currently dual dispatching police and have a plan working with MarylandFirst to load the group system encryption key into the MSP system and their radios. We have provided additional encryption information to the state and will be working with them to resolve.

Scanners - Radio transmissions on the NEXTGEN Fire/EMS Dispatch Talk Channel can still be heard on existing scanners. All existing radio scanners can continue to be used for FIRE &
EMS Page Alerting purposes as all communications on the Fire/EMS Dispatch Talk Channel will still be broadcast over the 154.980 Mhz Frequency. Since the NEXTGEN system is a digital system, talk groups and encrypted operations cannot be processed by analog scanners. More information on the scanners can be viewed at www.stmarysmd.com\radio - please share this with your members.

Update #8 - 8\6\13

No issues were reported over night, our monitoring operations of the new system continue. We will continue to optimize the system today and are ready for any issues that may arise.

There are several radios that have reported issues (18 mobiles, and 15 portables) out of 1504 total radios on the system. We are working through this list and have corrected 15 mobiles and 12 portables.

Police simulcast is not working correctly, we are currently dual dispatching police and have a plan working with MarylandFirst to load the group system encryption key into the MSP system and then their radios.

Update #7 - 8\6\13

At 6:21 am this morning we activated our P25 radio system.

We just completed the optimization of the sound levels for paging tones and voice.

There are several radios that have reported issues (12 mobiles, and 9 portables) out of 1504 total radios on the system. We are working through this list and have corrected 9 mobiles and 7 portables.

Police simulcast is not working correctly, we are currently dual dispatching police and have a plan working with MarylandFirst to load the group system encryption key into the MSP system and then their radios.

Chiefs, in an effort to ensure that all your radios are properly registered on the system and operational it would be helpful if every radio was turned on and a radio test performed. You can perform this check between your radios.

Update #6 - 8\5\13

At 6:21 am this morning we activated our P25 radio system.

We experienced an issue with the new system not properly initiating page tones (Fire\EMS). We just corrected this problem and have tested with all companies and squads to confirm proper operation of the paging system.

We will be working to optimize the sound levels this afternoon.

There are several radios that required reprogramming (6 mobiles and 17 portables) out of 1504 total radios on the system. We are working through this list to get these radios operational.

Update #5 - 8\4\13

We will be going live on our new radio system tomorrow - August 5, 2013 at 6:00 AM.

All system functionality and system checks have been completed.

The necessary Final Acceptance Test Procedures have been completed.

At or around 6:00 am here can be expected:

1) The Main Communications Center, Emergency Operations Center, and Bunker will be manned and prepared for the migration.
2) Dispatch will announce that Dispatch Operations will transfer to the Bunker.
3) Dispatch will announce that the P25 system is active and radio users must switch the A\B switch to "A".
4) Dispatch will perform a roll call to all agencies\department\squads
5) Dispatch operations will remain at the Bunker until the old radio system is disabled.

Problems should be reported via the helpdesk or phone at 301-475-4911 - we will be manning these lines for the first 48 hours of the transition.

If you have any questions you can e-mail bob.kelly@stmarysmd.com.

Update #4 - 7\31\13

We will be going live on our new radio system ;August 5, 2013 at 6:00 AM. The following information will help with the switch that is scheduled to occur:

· The Preparation

  • All system functionality and checks have been completed. There have been no issues identified to date which would indicate that the system will not operate ;as expected.
  • Support staff including ;Harris Engineers, Harris Technicians, Radio Technicians, Alcatel Rep (Microwave), Comm Manager, ;and Radio Technical Team will ;be strategically positioned to quickly respond to issues and\or problems that may arise.
  • Fire/EMS and other organizations can assist with the notice to radio users of the migration by placing a notice ;with each Station Controller, Mobile and Portable Radio to change the A\B switch to “A” at the transition time or immediately thereafter and prior to use.
  • Request all organizations to identify one or two individuals and provide a means of contact, cell phone, land phone etc. at their Station in the event a change to EDACS or some other action is required for the first three to four hours of transition function. Note: ;We do not feel it is necessary to fully man ;your facility ;during the transition. A reply to this e-mail with this contact information is sufficient.

· The Plan

    August 5, 2013 at 6:00 AM Emergency Communications will be fully manned at both the Main and Bunker facility for EDAC and P25 operations for the transition Emergency Communications ;Center will confirm ;they are operationally ready - (no major incidents occurring) Dispatch will announce to all subscribers that Dispatch Operations will be transferred to ;the bunker Dispatch will announce to all subscribers that Radio Communications will be transferred to ;P25 Radio System Users will turn the A\B switch located on your radio to the "A" position. The initial registration of the radio on the P25 system will take a minute or so to negotiate communications on the new system. ; Dispatch will confirm that all stations, companies, and deputies have communications on the P25 System From this point forward all dispatching operations will be performed on the P25 system ; If Radio users experience any problems report them via your radio or call 301-475-4911. This line will be manned for the first 48 hours of the migration at a minimum ;

· Problems

  • Minor issues will be prioritized and handled as quickly as possible If a major system issue is identified, the support staff will take corrective action and attempt to resolve the issue as quickly as possible. A persistent and\or catastrophic ;problem may result in a transfer back to the EDACS system which will be coordinated and communicated to all users
  • If Radio users experience problems during the migration report them via your radio or call 301-475-4911. ;This line will be manned for the first 48 hours of the migration at a minimum. Once the migration has been completed users with issues can contact the Emergency Communications Center and\or email the Helpdesk@stmarysmd.com
If you have any questions you can e-mail bob.kelly@stmarysmd.com.

Update #3 - 7\27\13

We will be live on our new radio system ;August 5, 2013. ;
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There is still much work we are scheduled to complete this coming week in preparation for transition. Some of these tests ;will interrupt ;P25 radio communications so if folks are listening ;on this network do not ;be concerned. These tests are intended to evaluate the systems capabilities and resilience. ;
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As we connect ;several of our conventional radio systems (MSP low band, Pagers, Sirens, etc...) ;to our new P25 system we will be ;performing acceptance testing on these capabilities, users may hear this work on our current "live" ;radio system. The additional chatter will be coordinated with our dispatchers and should not interfere with live 911 calls for service.
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On July 17, 2013 we successfully completed the testing of ;1) MD_FIRST Motorola APX Radio's on the St. Mary's County P25 NEXGEN Radio system and 2) XG-75 Harris Radios on the MD_FIRST radio system. The testing followed a detailed test plan which demonstrated the interoperability ;capabilities of ;the radios and the P25 radio systems. Maryland State Police (MSP) operating in St. ;Mary's County are scheduled to receive new APX radios very soon with the ;necessary code plug installed which will ;enable continued ;operations on our system. ;
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Signal Strength ;testing was started ;this week and data is being captured which will allow us to ;compare our current radio system and P25 radio coverage foot prints. ;Dispatcher training, RF signal tests, and Microwave path and alignment testing were ;also performed ;this past week. ;
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Look for another update on Wednesday ;which will include more details on the cut-over (exact time and instructions). ;

If you have any questions you can e-mail bob.kelly@stmarysmd.com.

Update #2 - 7\18\13

After much deliberation we have decided to ;have ;the "Go-Live" date for switching to the new radio system slide one week. The are several reasons for this ;the most impacting being ;antenna installation delays due to our excessive rains the past several weeks. All our P25 sites are transmitting, ;consoles are operational ;and training ;is on schedule. ;The reason for moving our transition to August 5th is to ensure that adequate testing is completed prior to the switch. In spite of our very high confidence of the system performance based on ;successful ;checks performed to date, late last week it appeared that we were compressing our testing time lines to much to meet our end of July goal. The extra week will provide enough breathing room to allow sufficient time for our planned testing.
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The August 5th "Go-Live" is still 10 days ;sooner than our ;Mid- August ;time frame that we committed to ;for completion of Phase I when the contract was awarded. ;
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Barring any major issues that we have yet to encounter, we will be live on our system on August 5, 2013.


Update #1 - 7\11\13

We have established a website www.stmarysmd.com\est\radio.asp that has ;current ;information regarding the project. ;
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There is also a e-mail link located on this page for folks to ask questions and\or make inquires about the project. ;
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We are still on track for a JULY 29 transition to the new radio system ;in spite of the recent weather challenges we have experienced in the county. ;
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System testing is scheduled to begin next week. ;As we make progress through specific milestones we will send out updates and will notify of any changes in the date if a shift occurs.

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