LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A consolidation conversation is sparking a heated debate among neighbors and suburban fire chiefs.
"I think it would make it a little less personal," said Lyndon resident Adrian Rowan.
The reaction comes after Mayor Greg Fischer appointed the Merger 2.0 Task Force - a committee charged with finding improvements among metro departments.
The Fire/EMS subcommittee is still weighing the pros and cons after a firm recommended the metro's 17 suburban fire districts combine with the Louisville Fire Department. The subcommittee met Wednesday evening.
"I just don't think they're comparing apples to apples when they were throwing out numbers and dollars," said Chief Bill Seng of the St. Matthews Fire Department.
St. Matthews and Lyndon's chief are on the same page. "The suburban fire budgets and the city budgets are very, very different," said Chief Russ Rakestraw of the Lyndon Fire Department.
Rakestraw and Seng agree: what looks good on paper, saves money and improves the bottom line doesn't always make sense.
"What value are those services? What value are those to the community? Do they in fact bring the community closer together?" Rakestraw said. "Can the suburban system be helped with some minor revenue enhancements as compared to funding them at the same level as the city? They're all imperative questions that warrant answers."
Lyndon upped its business fire inspections, but the incremental fees haven't outweighed rising labor costs.
Rakestraw offers this improvement to the system: fire-based EMS service versus the status quo of a third service entity - a result of the county-wide merger more than a decade ago.
Pennsylvania-based firm Public Works, LLC suggested fire-managed EMS runs move may improve emergency response time and cut costs.
"If the current structure the way these fire districts get their funding doesn't change we're going to see that constant decline of our budgets," Seng said.
Saturday, May 18 2013 8:00 AM EDT2013-05-18 12:00:15 GMT
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A standoff lasting nearly 12 hours came to an end early Saturday morning in the Shively neighborhood. The man police were after, Jerry Ross, is dead. Police have not determinedMore >>
The man police were after, Jerry Ross, is dead.More >>
Friday, May 17 2013 11:10 PM EDT2013-05-18 03:10:15 GMT
LAUREL COUNTY, KY (WAVE) – A woman allegedly went to extreme lengths to let out her neighbor's dogs. According to Laurel Sheriff's Senior Sgt Greg Poynter, at 4:50 p.m. Friday deputies received a callMore >>
According to Laurel Sheriff's Senior Sgt Greg Poynter, at 4:50 p.m. Friday deputies received a call a woman had broken into a home on Chaney Ridge Road.More >>
Friday, May 17 2013 10:19 PM EDT2013-05-18 02:19:19 GMT
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – Several roads off Dixie Highway are shut down due to a police situation. According to MetroSafe, around 4:30 p.m. Friday Shively police were dispatched to a home in the 2900 blockMore >>
According to MetroSafe, around 4:30 p.m. Friday Shively police were dispatched to a home in the 2900 block of Dixie Highway.More >>
Friday, May 17 2013 10:21 PM EDT2013-05-18 02:21:45 GMT
NEW ALBANY, IN – New Albany police said Friday that a mother found dead along with her two young children in a creek in Binford Park in March drowned her two young children and then herself. New AlbanyMore >>
Investigators said Jaime Clutter, 35, suffered from mental illness -- possibly psychosis and postpartum depression -- when she walked her children to Binford Park March 13 and drowned them. More >>