Proposed county network could connect multiple governmental agencies


Kitsap County writer

Kitsap County is streamlining its network connections, developing a single system that will be shared by governmental agencies and save money on technology purchases.

The Kit-Net program is currently in the local agency approval pipeline. Kitsap County government, the city of Poulsbo, the South Kitsap School District, the Bainbridge Island School District and Kitsap Regional Libraries have already approved the partnership.

“This will increase the ability for first responder agencies to exchange information during an emergency,” said Kitsap Regional Coordinating Council Director Mary McClure. “And it will enable agencies to develop more efficient ways of operating.”

Kit-Net membership requires participating agencies to pay an administrative fee and impose certain security standards. At that time they will connect to an existing fiberoptic network that will allow them to share resources.

McClure said that uniform security standards are important because “security is only as good as the weakest link. If one agency is easily broken into it puts the whole network at risk.”

“We’ve seen recent cases where people came into a school and started shooting,” said Kitsap County Department of Information Services Director Bud Harris. “If this system is in place, an emergency responder could connect to the school’s security system. If the network is in place, the police and fire can pull up a GIS system and building plans and know exactly what is going on inside.”

Harris said the shared network will evolve into an entity that can be shared by all governmental agencies.

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