METCAD Historical Milestones

1975 – Champaign and Urbana councils approve policy and funding for consolidated police communications.  Champaign, Urbana and Unviersity of Illinois Police Departments are founding members.  This is funded by a grant from East Central Illinois Criminal Justice Commission.

August 1978 – Formal agreement for METCAD approved by founding agencies; James Munn named first director.

June 3, 1979 – METCAD begins dispatching from basement of county office building, 1905 E. Main St; 333-8911 listed as emergency number.

August 1980 – Lt. Thomas Whipple, Champaign Police, assigned to METCAD as director.

Dec. 1, 1981 – Champaign County sheriff's office joins METCAD.

May 1984 – County begins assessing fees on village departments for dispatching.

August 1986 – Barry Furey named as director.

1988 – FIRECOM fire dispatching consolidated with METCAD.

November 1988 – Voters approved 75-cent phone surcharge to pay for 911 dispatch service.

February 1990 – Basic 911 service begins after years of delay on 3-digit emergency number. Basic 9-1-1 provided the Telecommunicator with no name or location information.

June 1991 – Brian Melby named as director.

June 1992 – Mobile data terminal system begins allowing patrol officers to access dispatch information from squad cars.

July 1994 - Wireless 9-1-1 Phase 0 implemented for some carriers, allowing 9-1-1 to be reached form cell phones.

October 1995 – Al Anderson named as director.

May 11, 1996 – E911 system, or Enhanced 911 implemented. Provided Telecommunicator with callers name, phone number and location.

November 1998 – Voters approve increase in phone surcharge to pay for equipment improvements; revolving 10-year capital improvement plan approved by METCAD board. New surcharge $1.50.

March 1999 – Emergency Medical Dispatching (EMD) services begin at METCAD.

November 1999 - Tiburon CAD implemented.

June 3, 2002 - METCAD moved into newly renovated space in the same facility.  The new space provided for additional administrative offices, a larger dispatch room and a larger equipment room.  In addition, employes now have a locker room and a break room.

September 2003 - Wireless 9-1-1 Phase 1 implemented for some carriers, providing the Telecommunicator with the callers phone number and the address of the cell tower they are connected to.

June 2004 – Rick Kallmayer named as director.

September 2006 – Wireless 9-1-1 Phase II implemented for all carriers, providing Telecommunicators with the callers phone number, address of the cell tower they are connected to and GPS coordinates of their phone, when available.

May 23, 2007 - METCAD initiates testing of the new county-wide Digital 800 Megahertz radio system to support fully interoperable communications county-wide. The system is called the METCAD Digital Interoperable Communications Environment (MDICE).

August, 2007 through September 2007 - Champaign County Law Enforcement Agencies begin using MDICE. Agency cut-over was staggered over a two month period.

December 2008 - Area Fire Departments begin using MDICE.

December 2009 – Ralph Caldwell named as director.

March 21, 2014 - New 9-1-1 phone system equipment used by Telecommunicators to receive 9-1-1 calls is installed at METCAD.

July 7, 2014 - The Village of Rantoul joins METCAD, METCAD assumes responsibility for answering all 9-1-1 calls and dispatching for Rantoul Police Department and Rantoul Fire Department.

March 1, 2016 - METCAD implements Text to 9-1-1 service allowing citizens in need of emergency assistance to request help via text message from their cell phone.