AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – Now that Central EMS has been awarded Augusta’s ambulance zone, the city and the company need to talk, but there will be no commissioners.
“That was one of the big stipulations that we all talked about. We said that we didn’t want any elected officials being involved on this committee,” said Mayor Pro-Tem Brandon Garrett.
Commissioners are scheduled to vote on Tuesday about creating an EMS sub-committee to negotiate ambulance service and costs with Central EMS.
The Administrator, General Counsel, Fire Chief, 911 Director, and representatives of the health care community will make up the group, but commissioners say they don’t want the talks to be behind closed doors.
“I do agree with having the committee with the commissioners not involved, but I do think it should be an open forum though so that if people want to come to listen to what is being said, they can listen,” said Commissioner Sean Frantom.
At a meeting last week, Central EMS did not provide what it plans to charge the city, but they that said the company needs to make a ten percent profit.
“Negotiations should happen. Ten percent is ten percent. It could be ten percent of a few different numbers, at the end of the day, we need to come to the table and have a conversation,” said Commissioner Jordan Johnson.
But some commissioners say that they have a cost in mind that they don’t want to exceed.
“I’m not going to go with anything above $2 million because we actually had somebody in place, which was one of our locals who was using our own citizens to run the ambulance business,” said Commissioner Wayne Guilfoyle.
“If the committee comes back with more than $2 million, you won’t support it?”
“I probably would not,” said Guilfoyle.
Central EMS has been awarded the work for ambulance calls in Augusta, but there’s work to do to agree to a contract with the city.