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San Diego County officials, stung by scandal the first time they tried to install a new telephone system, on Monday named the company chosen to replace Telink Inc., the firm whose $25-million contract was canceled in 1983 amid allegations of kickbacks, fraud and favoritism.

Chief Administrative Officer Clifford Graves recommended that the Board of Supervisors authorize negotiations with Contel Page Systems Inc., of Vienna, Va., for a system to improve communication links among the county’s many offices.

Contel Page’s was chosen from 11 proposals reviewed by a private telecommunications consultant and a committee of telecommunications experts from outside county government. The three other finalists were AT&T; Information Systems, Northern Telecommunications Inc., and a co-venture of Pacific Bell and PacTel Communications.

The Contel Page system would allow most county residents to call any major county office without paying a toll charge, said Richard Jacobson, the project manager for the county. He said the system also features speed dialing, automatic callback and the ability to signal an incoming call when a line is in use.

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Graves recommended that the supervisors study the proposal for four weeks before voting to authorize negotiations with Contel Page. The system would be installed within about a year after a contract is signed.

The county’s contract with Anaheim-based Telink was canceled in January, 1983, after an investigation that led eventually to the indictment of 13 men, including two former county officials.


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