Kent County residents approved a proposed surcharge that could speed up response time from both fire and police departments in Kent County.

The funds will be used to update old technology at the Kent County Dispatch Center.

With 86 percent precincts reporting, voters approved the surcharge by a wide margin: 73 to 27 percent.

Officials say those upgrades are needed, especially when big events that require a large police response occur. Right now, Kent County dispatch uses equipment that dates back to the 1940s.

If the proposal passes, Kent County would be able to buy communication towers and equipment that would eliminate the need for multiple radio systems.

Voters would seen an increase of 70 cents per line on their landline phone bill, that adds up to an extra $8.40 annually.

If it passes, the surcharge would go into place in July and continue through June 2036. That additional surcharge would raise an estimated $4.5 million per year.