On Friday, May 24, 2019 the Mad River Township Board of Trustees met in a special meeting and hired 12 new employees for the Emergency Services Department. The hiring is based on passing the various requirements for employment with the township for emergency services employees. At least three new hires have yet to complete their basic EMT training prior to approval by the board.
In addition to the hiring, the trustees gave an across the board increase of $1.00 per hour. In February of 2018 trustees approved a $1.00 hour increase in pay for the same employees.
At that time the pay for a paramedic was $14.50 with the increase and is the highest paid member of the department. The paid 36 hour fire fighter was increased to $10.75 in 2018 and the basic EMS member was increased to $12.50 per hour with intermediate members receiving $13.50 with the 2018 increases. At that time, no increase in pay was approved for officers.
In 2017 raises were discussed under former Chief Tracy Young; however the trustees were not comfortable with an increase. In 2018 current board president Bob McClure stated that “billable runs are not the answer” referring to the new billing system for insurance companies.
Prior to the end of the print copy of the Enon Eagle, trustees were informed that no significant revenue was being seen from insurance companies.
In 2018, acting Chief Elmer Beard met with Fiscal Officer David Rudy to reduce some anticipated costs and make some changes to purchases to secure the $28,000 estimated to be needed for the pay increase at that time. He further noted that the insurance companies continued to discount the billing based on their standard rate of reimbursement and that the township would need to work on a five year projection for the department.
The township will be looking at a renewal levy for emergency services to cover the township and Village of Enon residents. In the State of Ohio, tax levies for emergency services are collected at the same amount of money each year. They do not see an increase in revenue with the addition of new construction.
As we reported in 2018, emergency services must look at the increasing costs of doing business based on regulations and equipment requirements when planning for pay increases.
The Enon Eagle published a letter from the former emergency services members who resigned at the regular meeting on Monday, May 20,2019 which details their reasons for leaving.