Paradise Valley Police Department to
move operations to cloud-based system
By Terrance Thornton | Digital Free Press
The Paradise Valley Police Department is moving vital day-to-day operations — things like computer-aided dispatch, mobile operations, crime reports and digital analytics — into what is commonly referred to as “the cloud.”
“It is a public safety software upgrade to meet our needs to do our jobs,” said newly installed Paradise Valley Police Chief Freeman Carney during a Dec. 8 public hearing at Town Hall, 6401 E. Lincoln Drive.
“We have had this product for 10 years now. Every employee of the department touches this system. It helps us with dispatch, mission-critical operations. The records division uses it. It is the system that pretty much ensures that we are able to do everything that we do.”
That critical piece of technology? Tyler Technologies and its cloud hosting services.
Chief Carney explains the move into the digital cloud is in tune with other upgrades happening within the municipality.
“It is in line with what we are doing. Email and now our Axon data is in the cloud,” he explained of modernization happening at the Paradise Valley Police Department. “One thing that worries me is that the system can fail, the current system.”
Found part of Chief Carney’s report to Town Council is the proposed cost of moving Tyler Technologies digital services to a cloud-based format, which comes with an annual cost of $108,000.
Chief Carney points out this digital move will ensure any breakdown of the system can be restored within 24 hours whereas in recent years system failures have occurred — and have lasted days, even weeks.
“It was about three weeks,” said Paradise Valley Town Manager Jill Keimach of how long existing digital services failed in the last calendar year. “It was myself and the police department who did not have email.”
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That’s a problem for any administrative arm of a municipality, but for a local police department that downtime of limited internal communication can be detrimental to public safety, police officials say.
James Bailey, the town’s IT technology leader, says Tyler Technologies offered the municipality an opportunity to be an early adopter of the moving to a cloud-based system.
“We re not raising any red alarms,” he told Town Council at the Dec. 8 public hearing. “The biggest benefit for us, for me, is the failure component. What is the tolerance for this? How long can we live without the system? We think it is less than 24 hours. If it does fail, it will start at dispatch, then cascade through the whole system. With a modest investment we believe we can be faster.”
Mr. Bailey explained the move to cloud-based operations contemplated are already approved through the state of Arizona.
“They [Tyler Technologies] are already certified with Amazon and Amazon is certified with the state,” he said of certain standards defined for housing massive amounts of critical data. “We have a great system and it is not broken, but we have an opportunity to be an early adopter.”
Paradise Valley Town Council appeared to provide Chief Carney the proverbial head nod to move forward with the Tyler Technologies migration to a cloud-based system.