Prove Case On EMS Unit

EMS sign in snow_wmEvery municipality in the state is properly on the lookout for ways to save money. But proposed cuts should not leave citizens feeling blindsided. Fudging the numbers and exaggerating the savings from such cuts damage the credibility of municipal leaders. Lakewood may be headed down that path. The Township Committee, predicting ever-deepening debt, voted recently to solicit outside companies to take over the EMS Department. The change could occur in late February or early March, leaving 28 workers out of a job. An important decision like that should be made only after careful deliberation and full public participation.

Lakewood’s EMS unit had a deficit last year of $770,000 — a shortfall that is expected to increase this year and next, according to township officials. But EMS Supervisor Scott Carter says the $700,000 deficit the township attributed to the department for 2008 is misleading.

“The Township Committee is not telling anyone publicly (that) the money shortfall also includes costs being shared by every employee of Lakewood,” Carter said, referring to pensions, Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, fuel and overhead building costs. “There is a small loss in the EMS department budget of about $200,000, which is minimal in the big budget of Lakewood Township.”

Carter blamed the loss of revenue on the large number of uninsured residents who are unable to pay the fee for an emergency response. Privatizing the service would potentially save the township $800,000 to $1 million, according to Lakewood officials. Lakewood needs to back up that kind of assertion with compelling documentation. Read full article in APP.

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13 COMMENTS

  1. LETS ALL SUPPORT THE LAKEWOOD EMS> THIS ORGANIZATION IS MUCH NEEDED WITHIN OUR COMMUNITY! IF THIS UNIT IS ABOLISHED< THEN PLEASE EXPLAIN WHO WILL DO ALL VEHICLE EXTRICATION AND SWAT EMS. THESE INDIVIDUAL ARE HIGHLY TRAINED!!! I **ALSO FEEL IF GEM TAKES OVER< THIS IS A CONFLICT OF INTEREST AND WHO IS GETTING A CUT IN THERE POCKET???

  2. perhaps we can solicit outside companies to take over the Public Schools for $6000 per child, the children will probably get a much better education. that would be a 50% savings for the tax payer. and we can use that 50% for vouchers for the children that go to private schools. a win win 🙂

  3. gut gezuked. i say let ALL storm the phone lines of the BOE and register ALL of our kids in the public school system… yes if necessary take a day off from learning and bring busloads of kid to register for PS. that’s the only way we will get ANY tax / vouchers relief! anyone have any other ideas?
    cutting the EMS is like a drop in the bucket compared to the BOE rip off!

  4. maybe the members of the Township committee can take a cut in their $22,000 a year or more salary, depending which one you are, give up the health benefits, and not take a pension. That would save money. After all, didn’t they want to get elected to the job to help out the citizens of Lakewood? And that would really help!

  5. Jackson Township did it and switched to quality ambulance it works perfect if not better than the old system as a matter of fact quality ambulance is the fall back now for the ems and I never heard them not be available
    Monoc has a tactical team available for swat (and there made up of paramedics not EMT’s)
    and the extrication is done by the vollies who do a superb job as a matter of fact the paid crews cannot even drive the extrication truck and if there is still a problem give it back to the fire vollies
    Don’t know who owns gem ambulance but what would be conflict of interest

  6. Actually Jackson never had and still doesn’t have a EMS department they only have volunteers and its difficult for the volunteers to leave what they are doing (work,school) to come out during the day so yes having Quality or MONOC during the day actually helps with the response time. Also Jackson Township gives their volunteers money every year. But here in lakewood the EMS is primary and the volunteers are only called upon if the EMS is on a call and the volunteers don’t get any money from the township.

  7. is there a reason we dont know about why the garbage and schooling cant be privatized. If the ems saved 700,000 or 200,000 according to some girsoyos and they only have 2 trucks, imagine how much they would save with the garbage and boe which is a much bigger operation

  8. the idea of sending all the jewish kids to PUBLIC school is a great idea. we could raise all the taxes to build new schools. But remember they are public schools!! the boys and girls will sit together IN THE SAME CLASS ROOMS also being a public school leave your toras at the door.

  9. #10 , and who should pay them for the garbage pick up???? If ems was privatized then you would pay them if you used their service. By the way even if we would save some money its not worth going to any of these companys they are not always available as much as they say they are. Proof being ems gets called to the nursing homes that they are supposed to be available for all the time. Also the if they are always available why does lakewood get called to do mutual aid in jackson. They have 2 or 3 volunteer ambulances and quality. They must not always be available.

  10. This is just amazing to me how someone can just decide to make this kind of decision on their own. There must be some other reason for doing this maybe helping someone out. I do know i will be making my voice heard at the committee meeting on january 1st. 10 AM I think this is an issue we all should be stepping up and speaking about it to them. THIS IS WRONG< this town needs this dept. See you all at town hall on january 1st 10 AM

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