Several Lincoln County towns can't afford to respond to 911 calls anymore. Now, city leaders are forced to make some tough decisions---in order to keep protecting their citizens.

Troy, Mo. is just one of almost a dozen municipalities in Lincoln County considering switching their dispatch service.

Late last year, Lincoln County commissioners authorized a 30% increase for dispatching services.

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Troy Mayor Mark Cross says that would mean paying an additional $40,000 a year. Money, he says, they just don't have.

Lincoln County commissioners told Five On Your Side the price for dispatch services have gone up because cities like Troy have been undercharged for the services since the recession.

"Our new fee would be about $177,000 a year. and they said we can expect another 30 percent increase next year," said Mayor Cross.

Troy had roughly 16,884 calls going into the dispatch center in 2015.

Troy City leaders are considering creating their own dispatch center or contracting with another county or municipality.

Moscow Mills just recently switched their dispatch services to the Lake St Louis Police Department.

Mayor Cross tells us Hawk Point is also considering leaving the county dispatch service.

Missouri is the only state that does not have a cell phone 911 surcharge to help pay for these dispatch centers. Troy city leaders plan to meet on the third Thursday of July to discuss their options.