Speech to Text for City's Nixle Contract Comes to an End
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new at four... thousands of people in athens are no longer getting alerts from the city after the city's contract with the program "nixle" ended at the beginning of this year. the "nixle" program allows the city and first responders to send alerts by text and email to inform people of wrecks, fires, and other emergencies. waay 31's scottie kay spoke with people who say the service is something they rely on daily. many people in athens told me they miss getting notifications from the city.. like these text messages.. letting them know when something's going on... one man even said the alerts helped him with his job. pkg: zak trotter, uses nixle "when i hear the ding on my phone, i try to pull over when i can." zak trotter is a truck driver from athens.. and a safe oneespecially when he hears the sound of a notification on his phone. some of those notifications used to come from a program called nixle. zak trotter, uses nixle "i signed up for it as soon as it became available." since 2011, the program has allowed the city of athens and first responders to send out alerts via text and email.. to let residents know of events and emergencies. zak trotter, uses nixle "i just know that when i hear a nixle alert, i know something important is happening in athens, so i try to keep up and keep track of it." however, the city of athens suspended the program when the new year started.. as its no longer free. the city will now have to pay about forty-seven hundred dollars a year, for three years, if they renew their contract with the program. trotter says, in his eyes, it's a no-brainer. zak trotter, uses nixle "definitely worth it." in fact, he says, he's depended on it.. as it's helped him do his job safely and more efficiently. zak trotter, uses nixle "to know where the roads are closed, i don't have to go around that area." and that's not all.. the program also sends out alerts about active police scenes, fires, amber alerts, power outages, and weather updates. zak trotter, uses nixle "tornado warning, tornado watch, and so i try to avoid the area if i can. i hate being on the road in bad weather." right now, four thousand people in athens receive the text message alerts.. and two thousand receive emails. trotter has no doubt, if the contract with the program is renewed, more people will sign up for it.. and he hopes the city will take that into consideration. zak trotter, uses nixle "i'd like to be kept in the loop." reporting in athens, sk, waay 31 news the city council will vote whether or not to approve the new three-year contract with "nixle" at their meeting on monday. city officials tell waay 31 - if the council votes to renew the contract - it will come with upgrades.. like spanish translations and automatic alerts from