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The Niagara County Sheriff’s Office was awarded a $400,000 state Government Efficiency Grant for its effort to merge the North Tonawanda dispatch service with the Niagara County 911 Center, Sheriff James R. Voutour and North Tonawanda Mayor Robert G. Ortt announced.

The grant was designed as an incentive for consolidation, which was completed in July, and will be used to cover the costs for reorganizing dispatch services between the city and county.

The transfer of police dispatch services to Niagara County will save North Tonawanda taxpayers $1.7 million during the next five years and give North Tonawanda residents better service with no loss of jobs, according to Ortt.

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced this week that 21 municipalities were awarded grants for consolidation and reorganization. The grant received by the county was the fourth largest.

Last month the six North Tonawanda dispatchers who were moved to Niagara County filed a lawsuit saying the city and county broke Civil Service Law by not transferring all their seniority, which caused them to lose pay and vacation time. All six were trained to dispatch police and fire calls throughout the county, not just North Tonawanda, sheriff’s Chief Deputy Thomas C. Beatty said.