No decision on EMS levy

Beth Sergent -

POINT PLEASANT — Members of the Mason County Commission updated the Point Pleasant Register on talks with Mason County EMS about taking a possible levy to voters.

At Thursday’s regular commission meeting, Commissioners Tracy Doolittle, Miles Epling and Rick Handley reported no decision has been made regarding a levy, though all three remain in communication with EMS Director Chuck Blake on the issue and finding a solution. Handley said Blake was to look at EMS expenses and if any more possible cuts could be made to the budget. Blake was also to speak with the Ambulance Authority Board members at their regularly scheduled meeting on Monday, before returning to the commission for more discussions on the matter. Handley did say, a solution needed to be found sooner rather than later.

Last week, Blake told the Point Pleasant Register, EMS had reported losses every month since July of last year. With billing changes from Medicare, Medicaid and private insurance companies, as well as revenue and funding decreases, Blake said EMS was looking at operating with over $400,000 less this year than it had last year.

In other commission news:

Commissioners approved a request from the dog wardens to carry a weapon in the console of their vehicles in the event they are confronted with an emergency situation. However, commissioners approved the request contingent upon the dog wardens taking and passing a certification class offered by the Mason County Sheriff’s Department concerning concealed carry.

Commissioners heard from Jack Kincaid with the Citizen Conservation Corps which will assist with community improvement projects involving Boy Scout troops in 2017 – the next year of the National Scout Jamboree at the Summit Bechtel Reserve in Fayette County. Scouts, including local troops, will be invited to go into communities to work on community service projects that fall into the following categories: Green-Friendly, Wellness, Construction, Infrastructure and Arts and Education.

Commissioners said they would connect Kincaid with local contacts to determine a project and any other assistance concerning lodging and meals.

In addition to commissioners, also present at the meeting, County Clerk Diana Cromley and County Administrator John Gerlach.

Beth Sergent

Reach Beth Sergent at or on Twitter @BSergentWrites.

Reach Beth Sergent at or on Twitter @BSergentWrites.