Updated Tue, Sep 13, 2011 1:12 pm
Athens County Commissioners are telling a West Virginia company to start work as soon as possible on a new 911 tower in Coolville.
Commissioner Larry Payne says they accepted a $153,000 bid at this morning's meeting from Hughes Supply of Hurricane, West Virginia to construct the new 172-foot tower.
The current tower is only 80-feet tall and Payne says its small stature has caused communication issues for police and fire departments in the area for years.
Payne says since the new tower is more than double the height of the current tower, it should significantly improve communication in the southern part of the county.
He says commissioners have been discussing replacing the tower for about two years.
"There were some issues with 911," says Payne. 'It never should have taken this long."
Former Athens County 911 Director Doug Bentley resigned last month just after the Athens County Firefighters Association put out a news release that was critical of 911 Center operations.
The release centered around poor communication issues.
Scott Warner was hired as the new 911 director last week.