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Even EMS gets the close look for budget costs

Feb 23, 2011 6:59 am
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="200" caption="Greene EMS is under fire as it negotiates a new contract both for rising costs and its way of sharing costs between county and town, with county legislators wanting the individual towns in Greene County to pay more. "][/caption]A decade ago, first responders and others in the public sphere were American heroes. Now, they've been cast as all but pariahs, sucking at the taxpayer's teats... and as Colin DeVries reports in the Daily Mail, we've now reached a point where contract talks between Greene County and their independently contracted paramedic service is now front page news, what with a growing number of elected legislators asking questions about "unequal cost sharing with towns." Greene County Emergency Medical System, Inc., DeVries reports, is now in the final year of its five-year contract with the county, with a contract extension proposed earlier this month, for a total contract proposal valued at $5,987,000 over five years from the county, with an additional $2,029,000 coming from towns served by the paramedic service. While everyone agreed that the service was good, and demand for EMS up, legislators expressed concern about rising costs. County legislators are complaining that their portion of costs are rising higher than towns and villages. Greene EMS in 2010 participated in 1,930 paramedic transports, responding to 48 cardiac arrests, 326 motor vehicle accidents, 589 breathing difficulties, 419 chest pains, and 31 air transports. Negotiations are expected to continue over the coming months until a new contract is needed this summer.