FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Orleans Parish Communication District
Proposed FY21 Budget Unanimously Adopted By Board of Commissioners
NEW ORLEANS (November 17, 2020) – The Orleans Parish Communication District (OPCD) proposed FY21 budget was unanimously adopted by the OPCD Board of Commissioners on Tuesday morning during its regularly scheduled board meeting.
Included in the Adopted OPCD FY21 Budget will be a variety of upgrades to the 9-1-1 and 3-1-1 communications system in Orleans Parish, including updating the current emergency communications infrastructure to NextGen 9-1-1 capabilities, 9-1-1 text and video messaging capabilities, and NOLA-311 text capabilities.
“First, I would like to thank Mayor Cantrell and City of New Orleans CAO, Gilbert Montano, for their unwavering support of our mission and goals as an agency,” stated OPCD Executive Director, Tyrell Morris. “OPCD prides itself on our ability to continuously provide easier and more effective ways for the residents and visitors of New Orleans to connect without personnel in emergency and non-emergency situations. The approval of this budget will help us to further ensure that, when residents and visitors need our help, they will have every technological opportunity available to reach us.”
One upgrade that will be implemented in 2021 that is expected to have the most impact on residents in New Orleans is the upcoming modernization of 9-1-1 services infrastructure within Orleans Parish to NextGen 9-1-1 capabilities through a move to AT&T ESInet™ technology. AT&T ESInet™ is an IP-based call routing service that helps public safety answering points (PSAPs) keep up with the current and future needs of its callers. Using the AT&T ESInet™ modern network architecture and the National Emergency Number Association’s i3 standards, Orleans Parish Communication District will be able to provide a more reliable and improved 911 experience. By making this move to AT&T ESInet™, New Orleans will experience improved emergency communications services and solutions provided, city-wide.
Also included in the technological updates for Orleans Parish is the adoption of text and video messaging to 9-1-1 through Carbyne’s c-Live Universe platform. c-Live Universe will provide unprecedented connections between 9-1-1 callers and call takers through live video chat, instant messaging, data sharing capabilities and location detection technology. All of which will dramatically reduce dispatch time, increase response efficiency and ultimately saves lives.
“Carbyne is proud to work very closely with the Orleans Parish Communication District,” stated CEO of Carbyne, Amir Elichai. “What started as an urgent deployment to help the City of New Orleans respond effectively to COVID-19 related calls and provide remote triage, has become a flagship partnership for Carbyne. The progressive approach of Executive Director Tyrell Morris, and the pursuit of better ways to serve New Orleans communities, led to a seamless integration of our services, which includes the ability to transform every 9-1-1 call to a live video session (patented), communicate via instant chat and receive advanced caller mobile location – all without an app being required on the caller’s side.”
In addition, NOLA-311 will launch 311YES using Citibot technology, a leading provider of interactive chat solutions for local governments to use for efficient and effective communication and civic change. 311YES will allow residents to utilize smart text messaging and web chat technology to submit service requests, ask a question, and send a message to OCPD staff. Residents and visitors of New Orleans will be able text their questions to 311YES or interact with the web chat assistant on the NOLA-311 website to receive an immediate response about city information such as business licenses, trash pickup times, permitting info and public meeting announcements. Residents will also be able to crowdsource city issues, including reporting potholes, broken street signs and missed trash pickups, all through an interactive chatbot that responds in real-time.
“Citibot is thrilled to be working with the amazing NOLA 311 Team led by Tyrell Morris,” stated Citibot CEO Bratton Riley. “We feel so privileged to bring 311YES to the residents of New Orleans, where they can interactively text message and chat through the city website and receive 24/7 customer service.”
OPCD will keep residents informed throughout 2021 as these technological upgrades are installed, implemented and made available to the public.
About Orleans Parish Communications District (www.OPCDLA.gov)
Formed in 1982, the Orleans Parish Communication District is the public safety answering point (PSAP) for all emergency communications via 9-1-1 within Orleans Parish. The agency employs over 140 individuals and provides emergency medical dispatch, emergency fire dispatch, and emergency police dispatch for the millions of annual visitors and residents of the City of New Orleans. OPCD is a member of the Association of Public Safety Communication Officials (APCO) and the National Emergency Number Association (NENA).
Marcus W. Creel, MS
OPCD Public Engagement Manager