911 director concerned about fewer landlines

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PARKERSBURG, W.Va.-(WTAP) Twice as many Wood County residents now have cell phones than those who have landlines. And that presents a problem for the 911 center, whose revenue comes partly from landlines.

911 Director Rick Woodyard Thursday mentioned that issue to the county commission, as part of his look back at 2019 and look ahead to the future.

He fears the county may have to raise landline phone fees to make up the loss in revenue, but hopes the West Virginia Legislature will address funding for 911 centers in the future.

"We're working with the power companies' lobbyists to try to go a different route than landlines," Woodyard said. "Everybody knows people who have landlines now are folks like me and older folks and people who really need a landline at their house."

On other topics, Woodyard says construction is in progress on a new cell phone tower in southern Wood County.

And the commission Thursday approved a resolution honoring the county's 911 dispatchers, proclaiming them as "First Responders".