The Lewis County Commissioners announced on Thursday, March 2, that Steve Mansfield has been named the Director of Emergency Services with oversight of both Emergency Management and E911/Radio Communications. According to the commissioners, the reorganization is in the best interest of the county organizationally and operationally as it coincides with long-range strategic planning goals and merges two disciplines with similar functionality. Steve Walton will continue to serve as Central Services Director and devote his time to oversight of the new finance system contract.
The reorganization was not a "snap decision" according to Commissioner Edna Fund.
"It's almost the perfect storm. We had the new financial system coming in so this was a well-timed transition," Commissioner Stamper explained.
The number one goal of this reorganization, according to Commissioner Bobby Jackson, is stabilization."We went through a rocky 2016, but as we are moving forward, we knew we would have to look at 911. We are very concerned about the safety of our citizens. Part of it is just to bring it back to center again," Jackson said.
"We have to put Humpty Dumpty back together... for the good of the common goal," stated Mansfield.
The new $1.2 million finance system is already in use in Thurston and Mason counties and has been in the works for two years. It will take up to two more years before it is fully operational.
One of the goals of the commissioners is to create a new emergency management center that will house the 911 operators and everything related to emergency management for Lewis County.