CARMEL, N.Y.— The Carmel Town Board is moving forward with plans to update the antiquated phone system in town hall and was expected to accept a bid this week from Superior Telephone for the purchase and installation of a new system that will cost a little more than $58,000.
Anne Pasquerello, confidential secretary to the supervisor and assistant to the Town Board, chaired the phone system committee, and told the board last week that her committee received three bids for the job. Superior was the lowest.
Pasquerello said that Superior is the town hall’s current carrier and has provided customers service and support for the aging phone system for the past 14 years.
Comptroller Mary Ann Maxwell said there are sufficient funds in the budget to cover the cost of the new system.
The effort to replace the town’s phone system began last May. At that time, Pasquerello told the board the system was so old they don’t even make parts for it any more. Calls were being dropped, she said.
Currently, the town hall, highway department, and recreation department, each has its own phone number. So if someone calls town hall looking to speak to someone in the rec department, they are given that phone number and told to hang up and redial. Under the new phone system, there will be one central number and all calls will be automatically transferred to the requested department—including the police. No one will have to hang up and redial.
“I want to thank this committee because they worked very hard to get this together,” Pasquerello told the board at its Oct. 10 meeting. “They dotted every i and crossed every t. We looked at every type of equipment that would be beneficial to the Town of Carmel, to the town hall, to the recreation department, the highway department, and especially the residents.”
Pasquerello said the new phone system would be state-of-the-art.
Schmitt called the committee’s report comprehensive and praised its members for doing a thorough job.
“It looks like this [new] system has all the bells and whistles,” he said. “It has everything we need for now and for the future.”
Pasquerello said the installation of the new system will start in approximately 30 days and employees will be trained how to use it.
“Now if [a caller] presses 2 to go to the building department they will actually go to the building department,” she said. “The voice prompts are going to be so much easier.”