A local lawmaker has ben named Legislator of the Year by the Connecticut Police Chiefs Association. Monroe State Representative J.P. Sredzinski, whose district also includes part of Newtown, was recognized by the group for his work on behalf of law enforcement during the 2016 General Assembly session. The organization specifically honored Sredzinski for his work on the Public Safety Answering Points consolidation legislation.
Sredzinski serves as the Public Safety Dispatch Supervisor for the Town of Stratford. He's been a 911 dispatcher since he was 19-years old.
The bill originally called for regionalized dispatch centers as a cost saving measure, but Sredzinski and other opponents argued that this law punished smaller towns. The bill ultimately was not brought up for a vote in the House of Representatives.
Sredzinski says the bill was well intended, but would have required municipalities to regionalized if they had under 40,000 people or were under a threshold of 911 calls taken per year. He says that would have reduced the number of public safety entry points.
Many of the towns already have a regional system, but for those towns that couldn't regionalized would have been penalized by the state. Sredzinski says the legislation would have shorted funding for 911 equipment and for training. An early version of the bill, which was changed several times, would have taken the authority of monitoring the 911 system out of that town's control.