Streetsboro -- The city's police department will receive two mobile computer tablets for its police cruisers from a state Homeland Security grant.
City Council unanimously voted to accept the grant July 14.
Police Chief Roy Mosley III, who told Council the grant is a one-time program, said the two new computers will not cost the city any money.
Police Lt. Darin Powers said the mounting systems are included with the new computer tablets, called mobile data terminals.
"We have 10 MDTs in use," Powers said. "Our older systems are lap-tops. The two new systems that we just received about two weeks ago from the grant are Getac F110 tablets.
"There is not much change at this point in how the officers interact with the tablet vs. the laptop," Powers said. "However, we feel the tablets will last longer because there are no moving parts. There is no lid with hinges, and they have solid state drives instead of hard drives."
Powers said Streetsboro police officers "strongly depend on those computers to do their jobs."
"We use those [computers] for everything we do out there," Powers said. "We can access driving records, Bureau of Motor Vehicle photos, driver's license pictures. We do all of our police incident reports, our crash reports [on the computers]. We can talk back and forth with dispatch. We can look up any information at the police department on our mobiles, as well."
The cruisers also have the ability to print out citations, he said.
"We're the only police agency in Portage County that has printers in our cars to print out traffic citations and turn those into the court," he added.
Mosley said since the grant is a one-time source of money, he will be requesting city funds in 2015 to purchase additional mobile tablets.
When asked about how many computers he hopes to request in 2015, Mosley said, "We are trying to determine the cost of the units, but I am still waiting on feedback from Getac [the company that makes the computers]."
Mosley said the department's in-car computers are beginning to wear out, "due to wear and tear."
"Screens are being secured with hinge stiffeners, some USB [flash] drives are going bad, and some keyboards/screens have had to be repaired," he said.
Powers said the oldest mobile computers are about 4 years old, adding, "We typically see a lifespan of 3-4 years."
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