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Schenectady County’s Unified Communications Center Celebrates 10 Years

Brick building with Schenectady County Communications Center sign

The Schenectady County Unified Communications Center (UCC) 911 call center, is celebrating 10 years of serving our community. The UCC began operations on May 19, 2014 and receives over 90,000 911 calls and over 200,000 non-emergency calls every year.

The UCC was created to consolidate a fragmented emergency communications system into one county-wide dispatch center. Before the creation of the UCC, there were twenty-three fire departments, seven police agencies, and three EMS agencies using four different and independent dispatch call centers.

“We're proud to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Schenectady County's Unified Communications Center,” said Gary Hughes, Chair of the Schenectady County Legislature. “For a decade, we've provided reliable emergency dispatch services, ensuring the safety and well-being of our community. We will continue working with our first responders to ensure they have the tools they need to keep our families healthy and safe.”

Schenectady County operates the UCC through an intermunicipal agreement with the City of Schenectady and the towns of Niskayuna, Glenville (including the Village of Scotia), Rotterdam, Duanesburg (including the Village of Delanson) and Princetown. Oversight authority is provided by a committee of the elected leaders (or their designee) from each of the towns, the City and the County in the areas of operations, budget, staffing, contracts, and cost sharing.


Chairman Hughes added, “We are deeply grateful for our dispatchers and UCC staff who are always ready to answer the call and assist residents in their times of greatest need. Their dedication ensures that help is always just a phone call away.”

Additional Initiatives

Public Safety Radio System

In 2018 Schenectady County began consolidating the emergency communications systems throughout the County, including police, fire, and EMS radio systems, which operated on various frequency bands into one county-wide system. This includes bringing a new P25 800mhz Emergency Communications Radio System online, upgrading and replacing multiple radio towers, replacing outdated street level mobile and portables for all emergency responders, and updating equipment used at the County’s UCC to increase interoperability for all agencies.

Collaboration with Northern Rivers

In 2021 the UCC worked with law enforcement partners and Northern Rivers to form an Emotionally Disturbed Person Diversion Program, which allows a 911 dispatcher to transfer specific emotionally disturbed callers directly to a counselor instead of sending police officers.

System Upgrades

New 911 servers were installed to replace over 20-year-old legacy 911 servers to protect the integrity of the system, including the ability to receive text to 911 calls. Rapid SOS, which links life-saving was installed in 2018. The UCC is also working to add additional Microwave Communications Connections to neighboring counties and adding redundancy and backup to specific infrastructure of the new radio system to ensure long term stability and coverage.

Peer-to-Peer Support Program

Public safety dispatchers often experience mental health issues due to the high-stress environment of their job, where they handle constant exposure to traumatic events and life-threatening situations, leading to anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The UCC has taken steps this year to create an in-house peer-to-peer support program to protect their dispatchers’ mental health.


In 2016, Schenectady County’s Unified Communications Center shared services initiative was chosen by New York State to receive the Comprehensive Service Consolidation Award for the successful implementation of a large scale service consolidation.

Public Safety Dispatcher

Interested in joining our County team as a Public Safety Dispatcher? Visit to learn more about the role and how you can become part of our dedicated team.