(Pittsburgh) July 11, 2017 Allegheny County Controller Chelsa Wagner issued the following statement regarding the announcement that the Allegheny County 911 Call Center will be relocated to Pittsburgh International Airport:“My office’s audit released in May called into question the wisdom of relocating County facilities without a clear rationale or a transparent bidding process. If it is truly necessary to relocate the 911 Call Center from a facility into which County taxpayers have invested more than $3 million for improvements over the years, a public bidding process should have been conducted to ensure the best deal, as is the policy of other governments and even some private companies. Much like the recent move of the County Police to the former Parkway Center Mall property, moving the Call Center to the Airport is likely to increase rental costs to the taxpayers, in this case for a facility that was built at public expense to begin with.This move also represents a relocation of hundreds of existing employees from a centrally located facility to the outer fringes of the County. I remain very concerned with the trend of disinvestment in the urban core in favor of more remote locations. The complications of commuting costs and arrangements for many of these employees promise to be widespread. Whether many current or prospective employees will be able to access jobs at the Airport location is an open question. This is the consequence of a process that was conducted behind closed doors and without discussion. Like all County residents whose lives may depend at any moment on the proper operation of the 911 system, I will be anxiously awaiting a plan that will ensure a smooth transition without any interruption in service. Plans that impact the well-being of every County resident should be made with far greater openness and public involvement.”