Upgrade to aid Lafayette law enforcement


DARLINGTON, Wis. — It will take until early 2017, but the Lafayette County Sheriff's Department will move into the 21st century when it comes to records management at the department.

Local officials said it could be a boon for local law enforcement.

Lafayette County supervisors recently passed a resolution to borrow just more than $265,000 for a new records management software system for the department. The resolution includes a maintenance fee of about $19,000 in the second and third years of the contract.

The supervisors awarded the related contract to Spillman Technologies Inc., of Salt Lake City.

Sheriff Reg Gill said Spillman has a history of successfully working with law enforcement in Wisconsin dating back to 1997. He said the company is the primary service being used by sheriff's departments in the state.

“This is a complete rebuild from the ground up,” said Gill. “Our current records management system that has been in existence since 1989 or 1990 will be set aside, and we'll move into a whole new system.”

Gill said it is a big step that local municipal law enforcement in the county will be brought into the system, giving them a great deal of information-sharing power between the departments.

“It's going to be a tremendous gain for not only the people working in the dispatch center but for all the emergency services in Lafayette County,” he said.

A Spillman sales representative noted the age of the current system.

“They're using technology that's pretty dated,” said Danny Adams. “They're using green screen technology that's not allowing them to have data sharing. That's a big, important thing for them to share data not only across the county but across local bordering agencies. They also want support, stability and integration between their modules.”

One thing the software update won't include is any old records at the sheriff's department.

Gill said the plan calls for the department to “start new” once the system goes online. He said the old records will not be included due to the extremely high estimated cost of transferring that data into the new system. He also noted there is no guarantee of the quality of that data transfer.

This is the second of two major projects Gill said should be done at the sheriff's department when he was elected in November 2014.

The other was to replace an aging communications tower. A new, 300-foot tower is being installed behind the county highway department building in Darlington.

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