A contract dispute could put Franklin County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) in jeopardy.
According to the Franklin County Observer, EMS has requested an increase in funding from $100,000 to $150,000 due to the higher volume of calls for service. The original request was made at the County Council August budget hearings, but was turned down.
As a result of council’s decision, EMS was instructed to re-do their contract to fit the amount of $100,000.
Franklin County Commissioners recently received another EMS contract, but again requested funding for $150,000. The contract also included a letter threatening to halt service for 2014 if the additional $50,000 could not be appropriated.
County Commissioners asked council members to sign the $150,000 contract at the Nov. 26 Franklin County Council meeting. The contract was not approved.
EMS officials say more funding is required to operate efficiently. However, according to the Observer, statistics on the rise in calls have not been given to county council members.
Franklin County is not legally obligated to provide emergency services, but stopping service could lead to a potential lawsuit against the county.
To allow commissioners more time to negotiate with EMS, a motion was made to appropriate $25,000 to assist EMS for the first two months of 2014 at the county council meeting. The motion was voted against.
County Commissioners will continue working on an agreement in hopes of a resolution next month.