AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – Prices are going up here in Augusta and elsewhere. Now, there’s a request to increase the cost of something you may never want but could save you or a loved one’s life, an ambulance ride.
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Gold Cross, the City’s ambulance service provider, is now sending out a call of its own to Augusta commissioners saying it wants an increase in transport rates.
“Gold Cross requested that it go on the agenda through Public Safety (committee). They do provide a valuable service to our citizens here in Augusta,” said Commissioner John Clarke.
To provide that service, Gold Cross wrote commissioners requesting a new transport rate of $1,750, that would be a $600 increase. The cost per mile would also go up.
Gold Cross is pointing out everything needed to run an ambulance service from insurance. Fuel, maintenance, wages and more are also going up.
Gold Cross writing their request is comparable to what is charged in cities like Atlanta, Macon and Columbus.
“It’s a negotiation tactic. I think we just need to have a discussion with them and see where we can meet. They definitely deserve a rate increase. I don’t know if it’s to that level, but we definitely need to have the conversation with them,” said Commissioner Sean Frantom.
The City has an emergency services subcommittee meeting going over all thing’s ambulance.
Some commissioners are saying with that group still working, now isn’t the time to consider this request.
“I’m not for or against a rate increase right now I just want to wait until the committee finishes its work,” said Mayor Pro-Tem Bobby Williams.
This rate increase doesn’t have anything to do with what they’re talking about in the subcommittee.
Gold Cross officials were not available for a comment but the request for the rate increase will be facing some push back when take it up at Thursday’s meeting.