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Published: Tuesday, 5/2/2006

Henry County townships given EMS alternatives

NAPOLEON - Henry County commissioners plan to present three options to township trustees for covering cuts the commissioners have made to emergency medical services.

In a letter to go out this week, commissioners decided yesterday to suggest:

●Putting a countywide levy on the ballot to fund emergency medical services.

●Creating an emergency medical district, which could then put a levy on the ballot.

●Letting each township be responsible for its own emergency medical funding.

Commissioners are to meet with the trustees at 7:30 p.m. May 16 in the Malinta Fire Hall. The first such meeting last month drew more than 50 people, Commissioner Rita Franz said.

Commissioners are urging trustees to decide by June 15. But the decision will be up to the trustees, Mrs. Franz said.

The commissioners, who decided last year to quit providing some vehicles, training, and supplies for the county's emergency medical services, have said they don't have the money next year to ensure the six emergency vehicles the county owns.

County subsidies to emergency medical services have typically been a small portion of income, most of which comes from fees collected for transporting injured or ill people.

Commissioners estimate emergency medical services received about $50,000 to $60,000 from the county last year, but exact figures have not been compiled, Mrs. Franz said.

Last year, after voters repealed a new sales tax, the commissioners cut their emergency medical budget to zero for this year.

Those subsidies have mainly been for the southern half of the county.

Napoleon, Liberty Center, and Ridgeville Corners operate their own emergency medical services more independently.

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