Port Jervis, Deerpark Agree to Contract to Save PJ Ambulance Corps
PORT JERVIS, N.Y. -- The City of Port Jervis and the Town of Deerpark has setup a contract with the Port Jervis Ambulance Corps to get it back up and running again.
"Because of their financial situation, we're going to try to correct that," said Port Jervis Mayor Kelly Decker. "Get them on the road to recovery."
The ambulance corps shut down on November 8 due to lack of funding. That caused the group to lose its workers compensation and fall behind on its insurance payments.
"We bill every patient that goes out; however, the insurance companies only pay a certain amount or they'll refuse payment," said Roger Morgan, the corps captain. "And price of our medications, narcotics, and things like that are just highly expensive. We couldn't afford it."
Under the agreement, Port Jervis and Deerpark will each immediately provide $15,000 and give another $15,000 each before the end of 2016. The contract will also place one elected official from each municipality on the board of the ambulance corps. The municipalities will also be keeping a close eye on the spending too.
"We can audit their books at any time," Decker said. "Either municipality or the municipalities together can have their books audited, which we will do before the end of the year."
Port Jervis and Deerpark will also work with the ambulance corps to create a steady revenue stream by fundraising. The contract runs through 2017, and the ambulance corps will be offering basic life support to only Port Jervis and Deerpark.
"We're going to push for fundraising and more donations, and more volunteers to help save on cost of salary," Morgan said.
"Obviously we realize that there may have to be infusion here and there, but hopefully it'll be minimal, if any at all," Decker said.
No word yet on when they'll be in service again, but the clock is ticking. The Port Jervis ambulance corps will have until December 8 to get everything back up and running.