Geneva County mayors give commission ultimatum for EMS
GENEVA COUNTY, Ala. (WTVY) -- A matter of life or death, that was the discussion at Monday’s Geneva County Commission meeting.
Several first responders and the mayors of the county’s largest municipalities all on hand requesting more money for emergency services.
Geneva County mayors say they need additional funds to help keep their EMS agencies running across the county.
The mayors putting the commission on notice, in 60 days they will stop providing those services outside their city’s jurisdiction.
First responders are feeling the challenge brought on by COVID-19.
A challenge they say they can’t take on alone.
“We want to continue to provide that service for the people in the county and all we were asking is the commission to come forward and help us with the funding to get us through this time,” said Samson mayor Clay King.
The cities going so far as saying they would agree to stop sewer and septic projects for more EMS funding.
“I don’t think we have any choice.”
“We don’t have any choice in that matter. But, you know, we just feel very strongly about the EMS that we want to continue to provide the service that we’ve provided the people this county is used to, and we need those funds.”
District one commissioner Weston Spivey motioned for the commission to put their support towards more funding to EMS, but it fell on deaf ears as the motion died when no other commissioner seconded the motion,
“It really gives you concern to think ‘Well, are they going to help us or are we going to have to take other measures and restrict our limits of where we go into the city limits instead of going out of the jurisdiction’ and it’s tough it’s hard, because we want to do what’s right and we’re trying to, but we do need help and assistance,” said Geneva mayor David Hayes.
After the failed motion, Samson mayor Clay King stepped in giving the county a notice that they will stop running calls outside city jurisdiction if they do not receive funding.
“I will encourage the people that live out in the county to call their commissioners and tell them how they feel about this and ask their commissioners to come on board and support this and let’s get this behind us,” King added.
The funds in question? From the American Recue Plan Act.
County commissioners have until April 1st to decide how they will spend it, 2 weeks before the 60-day deadline.
“They’re going to know then what they’re going to do with those funds, and we’ve given them a 60-day deadline and I think that’s fair and I personally and as well as these guys, we don’t want to jeopardize our city’s medical needs for our citizens as well,” said Hartford mayor Neil Strickland. “So, they are going to have access to the funding, and I think it needs to be allocated to the cities.”
News 4 asked the commission if they would like to comment regarding the mayors’ ultimatum.
They say they won’t give a response until they get that notice in writing.
The county currently gives each service $1,000 a year, working out roughly to $2.75 per day.
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