Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

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March 24, 2014

County approves ambulance contract change

Navarro County Commissioners Court approved changing the effective date of the ambulance contract with the City of Corsicana to August 1, instead of March 31 each year.

The county contracts with the City of Corsicana’s Fire Department for ambulance service outside the city limits. The amount of money the county pays for the service has varied in recent years, going down and then back up again when the fund found itself floundering. Last year, the county said they didn’t want to pay the amount the city was asking, but it was too late in the budget talks for both entities to make major changes to either government’s budget.

The new date will allow for more time to calculate the city’s subsidy request, and for the county to consider it.

“It’s a problem, if we have to give notice by March 31,” said City Manager Connie Standridge, who spoke to the commissioners on behalf of the city Monday morning.

“We have to give you notice by March 31 and if we don’t we’re in breach of contract,” she said.

By changing the commitment date, the county and city will already have their certified tax rolls and have a better idea of their budget limits for the upcoming fiscal year. There will still be a six-month extension period, to give the county time to find a new ambulance service.

In addition, the city asked that the reimbursement relate to the health of the fund rather than to the revenue and costs of making county ambulance runs, but that language was not adopted by commissioners. District Attorney Lowell Thompson suggested some revisions to the wording of the document.

“You want to have the leeway to negotiate,” Thompson advised.

The change was approved unanimously, although Judge H.M. Davenport was not at the meeting because of a health concern.

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