Brundidge takes slow approach to ambulance service

Published 12:00 am Monday, January 13, 2003

The Brundidge City Council is taking a slow approach to awarding an ambulance service contract for the city.

Mayor Jimmy Ramage said the council is not in a hurry to make a decision on whether to contract with Haynes Ambulance Service or with Emergystat.

Haynes has served Pike County for the past 15 years under a contract with the Pike County Commission and the cities of Troy and Brundidge. However, the county commission put the contract

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out for bids and awarded a three-year contract to the apparent low-bidder Emergystat

of Vernon effective Dec. 1, 2002.

"We're taking a slow approach to the situation," Ramage said. "The county commission's decision to award the contract to another service was made hastily. There was no communication between the county commission and our council prior to the awarding of the bid. We were never given an opportunity to have any input into the decision."

Ramage said, however, the county attorney has contacted the city to see where it stands on the issue.

"I told him we haven't made a decision," Ramage said. "We are going to look very carefully at what our needs are before we make a decision. We'll go with the service that will best meet our needs - the one that we feel will best serve our community."

Ramage said he has been pleased with the service Brundidge has received from Haynes over the years.

"I haven't heard any complaints," he said. "From what I know, everyone has been satisfied with Haynes' service. That is something we will take into consideration."

Both Brundidge and Troy are continuing to route 911 calls to Haynes. Calls made from the county are routed to Emergystat unless the caller requests Haynes.

Ramage said the county commission has not requested that the Brundidge City Council meet with them.

"The Pike County Commission, Brundidge and Troy have not been at the same place at the same time," he said and stopped short of saying whether a meeting of that kind would be beneficial. "That would have been a better solution way back - prior to the awarding of the contract."

The Brundidge City Council's next meeting is Jan. 21 and the agenda for that meeting has not been set.

"I don't know if the ambulance issue will be on the agenda at our next meeting or not," Ramage said. "The decision we make will not be based on what the county commission does. We want to look at all sides of the issue to make sure we have all the facts. We'll consult legal council in an effort to make a good sound decision for our community."