Commissioners seek more control over EMS spending - Journal Adv...

Full story: Journal-Advocate

The Journal-Advocate editorial board of publisher David McClain, editor Forrest Hershberg, news editor Sara Waite and regional editor Judy Debus, sat down this week with the Logan County Commissioners to discuss the proposed Logan Emergency Services Authority .

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Mike Burnett

Great Falls, MT

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#1
Oct 1, 2009
 

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When you step back from this EMS debate and look at it from the perspective of doing the greatest good for the greatest number of people... from the perspective of doing what is right for the protection of the health and safety of each and every citizen of Logan County... there is only one reasonable conclusion.

As a citizen, I need to know that whom ever is running EMS is going to be there when I call - today, tomorrow and next year. I need to know that their equipment is top-notch. I need to know that their people are treated right so they attract and can keep the most talented, and that the money is plentiful and steady so they will stick around. Progressing to the proposed Emergency Services Authority will give each of us all of that, and more! The Authority has been designed from the ground up to be here for generations. Its employees will have professional support and will have the comfort of being appropriately compensated, and the security of excellent benefits (health insurance, retirement, etc.). Who wouldnt want that over the uncertainty of a company who has consistently (and self-admittedly) struggled to pay its bills?

Current EMS employees would be cheating themselves to think that they wouldnt be top choices to staff the Authority. If they have the character, training, expertise, professionalism and work ethic that any employer would be seeking, they shouldnt be worried about not having a fair shot. The Authority cant magically come up with people without first looking locally. So they may need to undergo some additional fire training -- big deal. If that is a concern, then one should wonder if they are truly thinking about what is best for the citizens, or if are they just thinking about whats most convenient for them as an individual. How could anybody believe that this additional training wouldnt be a huge benefit to the entire population? This whole idea is all about doing the greatest good!

Is it possible that some current EMS employees might not be able to get hired, for whatever reasons? Sure. Thats the world we live in. Its not good, or evil - its simply the way the world runs. Fair doesnt necessarily mean equal. Is it tragic for those affected? Of course! However, this is not about individuals, or an individual business -- its about doing whats best for 22,000+ people who depend on the stability of the system into the future, and in some cases for their very lives.

The county, and the county commissioners have an obligation to the people they serve to ensure that the best system for EMS is provided. Countless hours have been spent by a lot of very thoughtful people in formulating a system that IS better for the citizens.

Please look at this whole issue, not through the eyes of one camp or the other, not as a feud, not as he-said she-said, and not as gotcha politics, but through the eyes of your neighbor and vote for which system is best for their health and safety for years to come!

Tough decisions are not easy ones, and the right choice is not always comfortable. Doing the right thing for your friends and neighbors will pay dividends only your heart will know.

Please, think long-range... think big picture.

Please vote YES on 1B and 5F!!!
hidenwatch

Littleton, CO

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#2
Oct 2, 2009
 

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Tell your commissioners that....I have been to the fire station and to Life Care. I have talked to many of the employees...something the commissioners have NOT DONE! The truth is that there are not many at either "camp" that are in favor of the plan. A transition was promised to all and that was thrown out after the offer silenced objections. Now the truth comes out that Mr. Owens says the voters in Logan County do not matter....they will implement the Fire Authority Plan one way or another. Playing chess with people's jobs and lives, scaring the public into submission, and then telling them the joke is on them? HOW CRUEL!!!
roamer

Sterling, CO

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#3
Oct 2, 2009
 

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hw, your perception is simply not accurate. I too have spoken with employees at both places, and what does it say that some life care staff are actually in favor of the authority, but will only say that privately because they're in fear of retribution or unemployment if they dont stand with Doug? As for your comment about voters not mattering, reality is quite to the contrary. It is precisely because the voters matter that a backup plan has been developed. Life care has had their chance and now it is time to move on to something we can bank on being around.
hidenwatch

United States

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#4
Oct 2, 2009
 

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Roamer, I can promise you that you have the perception inaccuracy. The employees at Life Care are the ones with the potential to lose the most if this passes...including their jobs. Of the MANY that I did interview, there is no fear of Doug, just the fear of unemployment due to LESA. The firemen are the ones that are fearful of retribution and unemployment due to their superiors that stand to gain position and pay increases. My perception is also based on the history of Life Care and the deep-seeded roots the company has in Sterling and Logan County. Every business owner, including the owner of New Age Electronics, has seen lean times and struggled, but that does not mean their commitment to what they do is diminished. It does not mean they are any less human than you or I. So please do not try to make Doug out to be an ogre...his concern is for the citizens and patients in Logan County, and for the Life Care employees who share the same concerns for each and every one of you.
Wow

Great Falls, MT

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#5
Oct 2, 2009
 

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"The employees at Life Care are the ones with the potential to lose the most if this passes..."

Are you serious? Wow, what a narrow view of the world.

THE PEOPLE of Logan County have the potential to lose far more if it doesnt pass.
Wow

Great Falls, MT

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#6
Oct 2, 2009
 

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And another thing: please tell me you didnt have a straight face when you compared an electronics store to an AMBULANCE company?!? If an electronics store goes belly up, nobody dies. When an ambulance company disappears overnight like Life Care did in Sidney, somebody just might. That doesnt sound to me like much concern for the citizens.

Again I have to just say, wow!
firefighter7

United States

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#7
Oct 4, 2009
 

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I have talked to a few people about this. I for one think its just a few Sterling Fire guys looking for pay raises. I also think its unfair for all of Life Care employees to have to fill out apps just to get a job and the Sterling Fire guys don't have to! I'm just glad I don't live in logan county.
duh

Denver, CO

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#8
Oct 4, 2009
 

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Edwards- it is too bad your brother passed away- he would have never been two faced like you are. Zwirn, I must say that I am sorry I voted for you. Doug has run a responsible company for 15 years. How many people in this county, not to mention the thousands of travelers and visitors, lives has his company saved over the years. A company in Longmont can cover? The only company in Longmont is Pridemark, and they are medical rejects from the free clinic. That idea is laughable. This article said it right...logan county is out to make a profit! If this is an Emergency Services Authority, why dont the Police and Sheriffs office fall into it? Why not dispatch for that reason? Want to know why? The county is out for blood, and the chief and sheriff stood their ground. It is their department, they will run it. The fire guys dont want this, ask them when they arent around other firefighters. The only ones that do are the uppers that get raises and title promotions. People wonder why we are called hillbillys and white trash in Logan County by some of the biggest paper's columnists in Colorado? Look at how bad of decisions we make in who we elect!
sammy

Fort Morgan, CO

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#9
Oct 5, 2009
 

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Is there any amount of sales tax that the Government will stop at or do we taxpayers continue to have bottomless pockets? I'm on medicare now, so I guess I pay each month, then at register, then the percentage the medicare doesn't pay for.
roamer

Sterling, CO

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#10
Oct 5, 2009
 

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sammy, so what is your alternative? Relying on a company that has been struggling financially for years, owes many thousands in overdue bills, has not paid employees at times, runs 17 year old ambulances, has an owner who wants out of the business and who cant get bonded as required by his contract?

C'mon, is that really whats best in this situation?
Vote NO on LESA

Great Falls, MT

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#11
Oct 17, 2009
 

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Man these LESA proponents are a bunch of wind bags. Stand up for logan county vote no to higher taxes. Vote NO on 1B and 5F NO on LESA.
sammy

Fort Morgan, CO

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#12
Oct 18, 2009
 

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The solution is not government controlled anything when it comes to health care. have they looked around to see what other cities are doing? water problems to the tune of 30 million, another pile of money for this thing, lack of law enforcement in town, what's next? More taxes of course, always the leaders answer to everything.
NO LESA NO 1B and 5F

Great Falls, MT

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#13
Oct 18, 2009
 

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Stop the madness VOTE NO
For DOUG

Great Falls, MT

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#14
Oct 19, 2009
 

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Has any one every check into the age of the equitment at the fire station right now?

Older equitment at times is cheaper to keep up, than all this new stuff with all the electrical and computer stuff.

Voting NO on LESA is the best things for Logan County. Not higher taxes and more people just setting and sleeping and getting paid for it.
roamer

Sterling, CO

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#15
Oct 19, 2009
 

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For DOUG wrote:
Has any one every check into the age of the equitment at the fire station right now?
Older equitment at times is cheaper to keep up, than all this new stuff with all the electrical and computer stuff.
Voting NO on LESA is the best things for Logan County. Not higher taxes and more people just setting and sleeping and getting paid for it.
I'd take people sitting or sleeping at the station any day over the way Life Care runs things. If I'm dying of a heart attack, I dont want somebody to have to drive to the station and pick up an ambulance before they can come help me. And with my luck, they'd probably only send two basics who couldnt do crap for me anyway (in which case, thank God for SFD!). I dont want ALS available by phone or pager, I want them on the damned ambulance EVERY time.
NO ON LESA 1B and 5F

Sterling, CO

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#16
Oct 19, 2009
 

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roamer wrote:
<quoted text>
I'd take people sitting or sleeping at the station any day over the way Life Care runs things. If I'm dying of a heart attack, I dont want somebody to have to drive to the station and pick up an ambulance before they can come help me. And with my luck, they'd probably only send two basics who couldnt do crap for me anyway (in which case, thank God for SFD!). I dont want ALS available by phone or pager, I want them on the damned ambulance EVERY time.
What a drama queen. So if your toilet won’t flush do you start cramming money in it to fix it? Sounds like you sleep with your head in the toilet anyway. You my friend are an ignoramus. Please stop as your comments, as it makes the whole community look dumb. We really should look into this water issue as I believe it is causing brain damage. NO on LESA and CRACK COCAINE.
NO ON LESA

Great Falls, MT

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#18
Nov 1, 2009
 
NO ON LESA
Hope you

Great Falls, MT

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#19
Nov 1, 2009
 
NO ON LESA wrote:
NO ON LESA
and Doug move to that island somewhere. You really have got toooo be kidding!!!
I would love to

Great Falls, MT

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#23
Nov 1, 2009
 
Anything that would distance me from the egotistical moronic views given by the proponents of LESA. Maybe we can start a police authority…………… or do they call that the Gestapo. Vote No to 1B & 5F Vote NO on LESA.
Remember

Great Falls, MT

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#24
Nov 1, 2009
 
I would love to wrote:
Anything that would distance me from the egotistical moronic views given by the proponents of LESA. Maybe we can start a police authority…………… or do they call that the Gestapo. Vote No to 1B & 5F Vote NO on LESA.
either way you loose. With Lesa you have not job, with out LESA you have NO JOB!! lol

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