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1/30/13: Poloncarz Announces County's New Videoconferencing Capabilities


Current Outdated System Hinders County’s Ability to Conduct Business & Emergency Response Effectively and Efficiently System Will Help Reduce Travel Expense and Improve Productivity

ERIE COUNTY, NY— Today, Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz announced the upcoming installation of new, advanced videoconferencing equipment that will constitute an immediate communications upgrade for all County departments. The new system, consisting of a wall-mounted smart LED monitor with sound bar, will be installed in the conference room in the County Executive department’s secure suite in the Edward A. Rath county office building and will include Skype capabilities, cable television compatibility, and connectivity for both internal and external computers to facilitate document sharing, Power Point presentations, video training and certification opportunities, and large-audience presentations by County officials.

Having this new videoconferencing equipment will benefit the County in many ways, and we welcome this long-overdue technology to the seat of County government,” said Poloncarz. “Commissioners and Department heads will now be able to confer with their counterparts at the State and Federal levels from right here, meaning that travel time to other locations will be drastically reduced, as will the down-time associated with travel. There are multiple other possible applications for this new technology, with the potential to save time and money for every County department while simultaneously increasing productivity.”

The new equipment, scheduled to be installed in March, will be available for secure suite “routine” communications among county, state, and federal offices, but will also serve a critical need in emergency and disaster situations. Possible uses envisioned include the Division of Budget and Management or Comptroller’s office engaging in calls with ratings agencies, the Health Commissioner conferring with other county health departments and the NYS Department of Health, the County Executive consulting with the Governor’s office or Empire State Development, the County Clerk conferencing with the State Department of Motor Vehicles, the Department of Public Works engaging with the State Department of Transportation, and myriad other potential uses.

Poloncarz continued, “This technology is essential to the efficient operation of county government. As Comptroller, having such capabilities would have been invaluable when discussing possible bond rating upgrades with rating agencies and bond counsel, and would have made trips to New York City and Wall Street unnecessary. Now these capabilities will be available to help all our employees maximize their communications, efficiency, and effectiveness, while saving on travel time and expense.”