|County holds squad cash pending study|
|Written by Denise Freitag Burdette|
|Monday, January 07, 2013 10:46 PM|
Kevin Lynch and Art Little participated in their first meeting as Dearborn County commissioners Thursday, Jan. 3, alongside commissioner Shane McHenry who was voted the new board president.
Most of the night was spent assigning people to various boards and committees, but there were a few other decisions to be made.
Auditor Gayle Pennington told commissioners the first request of the year for money the county distributes to the county life squads had been made by Bright Fire and EMS.
With two ambulances, the total request was for $40,000, or $20,000 each.
Although money has been budgeted to continue the program this year, county administrator Terri Randall said the commissioners might want to place the decision on hold as a study continues on county fire and EMS services.
Generally, $20,000 has been given per life squad, said McHenry.
The money is distributed from riverboat gambling funds received by the county.
In May, about 60 firefighters, emergency medical service providers and county officials gathered in county emergency management building in Lawrenceburg to hear about a Dearborn County Fire/EMS Study being conducted by Duncan Associates, Muncie, in an effort to aid financially-struggling fire and EMS departments.
Not all of the fire and EMS units cooperated by providing statistics, said Randall.
The county has discussed having the departments submit more than fianncial information to receive the money. Perhaps the county needs to take a more comprehensive view, she said.
“I agree with that,” said Lynch, adding he has met with some fire and EMS department representatives.
But he does not want to hamstring Bright or cause financial hardship while the county looks at the issue, said Lynch.
Something needs to be set up in the next couple of weeks, he said.
Commissioners voted to table the request from Bright.
Later, Randall said “work continues in earnest toward solutions to this challenging issue. This Board of
Commissioners has made this a high priority and is very engaged and involved in the process.”
The issue will be on the commissioner agenda for the 9 a.m. Tuesday, Jan. 15, meeting, she said.
After the Jan. 3 commissioners meeting, Randall said she emailed the following letter to all the squads:
To All Dearborn County Fire & EMS Providers:
Meanwhile, commissioners also awarded a bid to and signed a contract with AFM Demolition to demolish the Shumway and Votaw buildings on High Street in Lawrenceburg, across from the county courthouse. After the demolition, the county will move forward with paving, landscaping and other work need to convert the areas into needed parking spaces, said Randall.