Public-safety dispatchers in Grand Forks County received the most calls ever last year.

The Grand Forks Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) got 92,720 calls for service in 2018, which is 6% more than the previous year. PSAP received 87,587 calls in 2017.

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"Our responders are busier than ever," said PSAP Director Becky Ault.

Ault presented PSAP's 2018 annual report to the Grand Forks County Commission on Tuesday.

Five years ago, in 2014, PSAP got 73,310 calls for service.

More than 80% of calls for service came in on a cell phone in 2018. The peak time for receiving calls in 2018 was between 3 and 5 p.m., the report said. This has been the time most calls are received for the past couple of years.

Grand Forks County Sheriff Andy Schneider said the high call volume can be attributed to a couple of things. There are just more calls, he and Ault said. But there are also more self-initiated calls from the Sheriff's Office. When a civil deputy serves papers or other deputies perform location checks they self-log the call, Schneider said.

There is also a better tracking system for calls today, Ault said, which could also be a reason more calls have been logged.

Other business

Commissioners approved a lease for Northeast Human Service Center.

The state entity rents space on the fourth and fifth floors in the county building and has since 2000. Northeast will rent the space for $14.64 per square foot, said Tom Ford, director of administration for the county. This new rate is up from the previous rate of $14.34.

The board also gave approval to a new anonymous fraud reporting policy.

Officials from the state auditor's office recommended adding the policy on their annual visit to Grand Forks County, Ford said.

There will be a phone number, fax number and email address for reporting fraud. The email address will be reportfraud@gfcounty.gov.

Fraud can range from stealing private information to mishandling county funds, Ford said.

"County officials deal with sensitive information every day, so we are trying to be proactive and protect our employees and constituents," Ford said.