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Dale Stephens: Failing to plan is planning to fail — vote no on EMS levy

October 25, 2018 GMT

It is often said that failing to plan is planning to fail.

The Wayne County Commission has put a levy on the ballot for a county wide EMS system.

The problem is there is no plan to go along with the $1.65 million annual levy. When questioned about a plan the president of the commission says pass the levy. Then a director will be hired and an authority will be appointed to come up with a plan. He also indicated it would take several years to put the plan into action. If the county EMS is as “fragile” as the commissioners say, Wayne County cannot wait that long.

The county fire departments have been providing EMS for over 40-years with little to no support from the county.

They submitted a comprehensive plan with no administrative costs backed by solid financial numbers that would immediately address the needs of the southern end of the county without doing serious damage to the fire department’s fire and rescue capability. This plan immediately put three new ambulances and crews in the southern part of the county and furnishes all six current providers with a new ambulance in year two and three. It was never given serious consideration.

Using current figures and projecting for increases in operating cost, the proposed levy money will not do the job.

The levy as proposed is inadequate, will not provide service to Westmoreland, and will not provide the level of service promised. Taking the EMS out of the fire departments will damage the operational capabilities of the very units that the county depends on when there is a major fire or rescue incident. The lack of plan for personnel, ambulances and equipment will doom this endeavor to fail.

Vote NO on the levy.

Dale Stephens

Westmoreland