City of Chillicothe Finance and Public Safety Committee met May 8
City of Chillicothe Finance and Public Safety Committee met May 8.
Here is the minutes provided by the Committee:
Mayor White stated that this was a joint meeting with two topics and asked Chairman Thornton to lead the meeting.
Office Manager Passage presented the committee with a time table regarding the steps to pass the appropriation ordinance. She explained that the appropriation ordinance had to be passed during the first quarter of the fiscal year and it was the legal authority to allocate funds to specific spending activities. Each member received a draft of the ordinance. She explained that the ordinance may be amended up until the time of passage. A required public hearing will be held June 25, 2018 at 6:45 p.m. The ordinance will be presented to the June 25, 2018 council meeting. She encouraged all to review the ordinance and give any recommendations before that time.
Chairman Thornton advised the committee that once the appropriation ordinance is passed that it is the maximum amount that you can spend on a line item.
Mayor White stated that we ask that everyone spend within their budget and should additional money be needed the appropriation ordinance will be checked to see if we had the necessary amount.
Amt Ambulance Proposal
Chairman Thornton explained that the City of Chillicothe has for five year paid $50,000.00 for ambulance service. Their proposal for the next five years is $60,000 for the first year and 2.5% increase each year after. He explained that the budget has $50,000; however the appropriation has $100,000.00. He believes it is worth the $60,000.00 to have an ambulance in Chillicothe. He recommends that the committee proceed with the proposal.
Alderman Colwell stated that he concur with proceeding with the AMT proposal.
Alderman Sharp read a report from Daily Dispatch Streator Illinois News, regarding ambulance service. Alderman Sharp stated that he has received phones and complaints regarding the ambulance service. He stated that one complaint was regarding a person that died and the family member made it here from Springfield, Illinois before AMT made it to the scene.
Alderman Sharp read a statement that he prepared regarding concerns with the AMT Proposal. His concern is the AMT proposal needs to address transparency such as accountability and disclosure of run times. He would like the removal of the statement of renewal for an additional five years. He also has a concern about the increase cost from $50,000 to $60,000 with a 2.5% increase each year after the first year and a concern about charging the city when they provide service in other areas at no cost. He would like to see in the agreement that AMT is required to submit to the City data to verify the run times. He stated that he feels there should be a clause that would allow either party to get out of the contract.
Alderman Sharp stated that he rejects the proposed AMT proposal submitted without addressing some of the concerns. He also would like the city to look at other options that might be available to the City to give better service at a lower cost.
Mayor White suggested that the City ask AMT for their run times, which will allow the city to bases questions regarding arrival times on facts. Mayor White explained that AMT has different response times per area, that Chillicothe is a one and one half ambulance market, and the EMS Board governs AMT. He also stated that if the City counters with a lesser proposal, you may be jeopardizing ambulance service for the City of Chillicothe.
Mayor White read a statement explaining his experience. He stated he has served on the Methodist Hospital Board, he was nominated to server on the AMT Board as Methodist Hospitals consumer advocate for the customers, as Mayor he has continued to serve the citizens of Chillicothe by using his experience to obtain the best ambulance service available.
Mayor White explained that the City needs to separate the issues of Ambulance Service and Rescue 33 and the most urgent issue is to get AMT under contract for ambulance service before the contract expires.
Chairman Hughes questioned what the response time for the ambulance service for Chillicothe. Chairman Hughes stated that we are not here to accuse AMT without the facts, however; we need to verify the response time for Chillicothe.
A discussion was held regarding the cost of ambulance service.
Attorney Seghetti explained what language is in the current license.
Ron Hedden addressed the committee and talked about Primary, Secondary, and Third response time.
Mayor White called the question. Do we take the proposal to council?
Chairman Hughes questioned if the city could get a one year Contract. Mayor White stated that might jeopardize ambulance service. He would recommend that we add an exit clause in the contract, along with language should the City joint the Fire District.
Attorney Seghetti stated that the exit clause should be in the license that the city would give to AMT.
Mayor White stated that three items should be included in the license:
1. Exit Clause
2. Language should the City join the Fire District
3. Requirement to submit quarterly and or annually their average response time, number of calls, etc. information to City
Mark Molleck, Fire District Board addressed the committee and stated that they have looked into the cost of providing ambulance service and the liability that goes along with providing said service.
Attorney Seghetti stated that he will prepare the changes to the License and send to AMT. Then and ordinance will be presented to council to issue the license.
Alderman Braun stated that should the city issue the license will it prohibit Rescue 33 from getting up and going as an ambulance service.
Mayor White explained that Rescue 33 came to the city a few months ago and stated that it would take them approximately three years to be in the ambulance service and would need financial assistance from the Fire District and the City. At this time he is concerned if the city has the money available to help them and should the city and the fire district come to some conclusion it will most likely take longer than three years.
A discussion was held regarding a mutual option or a unilateral option to renew for an additional five years. The consensus of the committee was to have a five year term.
There being no further business the meeting adjourned at 5:43 p.m.