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Communications Dispatcher

Salary: $26.11-$31.88 hourly / $4,542-$5,545 monthly / Range: 5874

DEFINITION: Under general direction, supervises the operations and staff of the County's Public Safety Dispatch Center; and performs other duties as assigned.

DISTINGUISHING CHARACTERISTICS: This class is found exclusively in the County Public Safety Dispatch Center. It is distinguished from the class of Communications Dispatch Manager by the Supervisor's focus on supervising dispatchers and Center operations, while the Manager has broad administrative responsibilities including budget preparation and serving as liaison with outside agencies and community members.


1. Supervises the work of Communications Dispatchers in the Public Safety Dispatch Center; assigns, evaluates, and disciplines staff; ensures staff compliance with Center and user-agency and affiliated-agency policies and procedures.
2. Supervises and evaluates the work of Communications Training Officers.
3. Designs, and directs the preparation of training manuals and other reference materials necessary to support the work of the Center.
4. Ensures the operational readiness of equipment related to the 9-1-1 emergency telephone system, user and affiliated agency radio systems, and the Department's computer-aided dispatching system.
5. Makes minor repairs to communications systems or analyzes problems and makes referrals to appropriate sources of service.
6. May perform duties of Communications Dispatchers in a back-up capacity.


1. Three years of dispatching experience in an emergency or public safety dispatch center, including two years of journey-level or lead-worker experience that included a minimum of 480 hours of experience training entry-level dispatchers; or,
2. two years of experience performing duties equivalent to the class of Communications Dispatcher II with Santa Barbara County, including a minimum of 480 hours of experience training entry-level dispatchers; or,
3. a combination of training, education, and experience that is equivalent to one of the employment standards listed above and that provides the required knowledge and abilities.

Additional Qualifications: May be assigned to rotating or night shift work.

Knowledge of: terminology, codes, and procedures used in public safety dispatching; telecommunications, computer, electronic, microwave, and radio systems used in dispatching; applicable laws regulating radio and telecommunications operations and public safety dispatch; Federal Communications Commission requirements for public safety dispatch centers; the functions of public safety agencies; principles and practices of effective training.

Ability to: plan, organize, assign, prioritize, and delegate the work of self and others; learn and apply sound supervisory principles and practices; set performance standards; review and evaluate the work of others; use sound judgement in reacting quickly, effectively, and calmly in emergency situations; understand, interpret, explain, and apply rules, regulations, and applicable laws; work well with other departmental and outside agency personnel; communicate effectively, orally and in writing.

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