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City Says It's Working On Police Radio Problems

Michael E. Keating

Cincinnati administrators say they are working with Motorola to address problems with the audio quality of some city police officers radios.

It comes as the Fraternal Order of Police is researching whether it can file a lawsuit against the company concerning the issue.Council's Law and Public Safety Committee heard about the radios Monday and the city manager released a memo about it later in the day.

"To date, Motorola has been working with the city in good faith to address audio quality concerns, including flying in a team of experts to ride along with CPD officers to witness and catalog the audio quality issues in the field," the memo said. "Despite these efforts, issues remain. However, we are on a path that we believe will quickly get us to an acceptable solution."

The new radios were delivered to the city in April and went into use in July. The new equipment was necessary because Motorola was not going to support the department's current radios. Officers began reporting problems with the new units as soon as they went into service.

The memo said several options were considered to fix the audio quality problem. It does not say what those were or describe what the "preferred" solution is.

"The city administration anticipates in very short order a mutually acceptable path forward with Motorola will be achieved that is cost effective and ensures that CPD's police officers have the equipment that performs the job and keeps them as safe as possible," the city memo said.

FOP President Dan Hils says the union's attorney is researching whether the organization can file a lawsuit against Motorola.

"Obviously our goal in any type of legal action is not a financial gain. Our goal is to force Motorola to act quickly on this and that way our people are safe when they're doing their job."

An assistant city manager told the Law and Public Safety Committee officials view this a contract administration issue and will make sure Motorola is abiding by the terms of its contract with the city. Everyone agrees the radios need to work all the time with no exceptions.

Jay Hanselman brings more than 10 years experience as a news anchor and reporter to 91.7 WVXU. He came to WVXU from WNKU, where he hosted the local broadcast of All Things Considered. Hanselman has been recognized for his reporting by the Kentucky AP Broadcasters Association, the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists, and the Ohio AP Broadcasters.