Edmonds City Council on October 5 to tackle fires and imbalance in EMS services
Edmonds City Council, at its Tuesday October 5 meeting, is expected to discuss proposals to change the city’s agreement with the South County Fire and Rescue Services to address a service imbalance over the long term that has led non-Edmonds fire units to respond to emergencies more frequently. medical service and fire calls in the city.
The Town of Edmonds contracts with South County Fire to provide emergency and fire medical services.
The issue centers on a 2017 amendment to the interlocal agreement between South County Fire (formerly Fire District 1) and the city that changed the staffing model, with the idea of saving an estimated $ 1.4 million. dollars per year. The amendment reduced the total number of firefighters on duty at any one time from eleven to nine, with three at each station. (Since one of the three firefighters at each station must be a paramedic, the total number of paramedics has increased from two to three.)
According to the board’s agenda note for this item, during negotiations leading up to the 2017 changes, the fire agency expressed concern about reducing the total number of Edmonds units that could respond. at some point and that would result in the need for units at neighboring stations to respond to Edmonds – effectively equivalent to a grant provided by the nearby Mountlake Terrace and Lynnwood fire stations. To address these concerns, the parties agreed to a formula called Neighboring Unit Utilization Factor (NUUF), which measures the time that Edmonds units respond to calls for service outside of Edmonds, then compares it to the time that no Edmonds units respond to service calls to Edmonds.
Under the agreement, equilibrium is struck when these two time periods are within ten percent of each other. The note to the agenda notes that the NUUF “is quite unbalanced and has been for some time. In other words, the NUUF says non-Edmonds units respond to Edmonds much more than the other way around. “
The council will consider two options proposed by Mayor Mike Nelson to address the imbalance, either of which would cost the city an additional $ 1.5 million per year.
Other items on the October 5 agenda include:
– A proclamation regarding Indigenous Peoples Day
– The annual report of the Edmonds Arts Commission
– An interview for the position of student representative of the council
– A discussion on budget planning and coordination
This meeting will be held virtually using the Zoom meeting platform. To join, comment on, view or listen to the full Edmonds City Council meeting, paste the following into a web browser using a computer or smartphone: https://zoom.us/j/95798484261
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In addition to Zoom, regular board meetings starting at 7 p.m. are broadcast live on the Council meeting webpage, Comcast channel 21 and Ziply channel 39.