Silver Lake Rescue offers new proposal to village

sl-rescue-squad-backSilver Lake Rescue Squad Inc. has offered the Silver Lake Village Board  a new proposal for rescue services for the next two years that significantly reduces the retainer fee paid compared to recent years.

Rescue officials hope the new terms and two-year time frame will give the village’s Silver Lake Fire Department and the rescue squad, a free-standing corporation, time to work out a mutually beneficial future, said Dan Gerber, Silver Lakes Rescue Squad Inc., president.

The new proposal was submitted to village officials Friday, Gerber said.

The proposal offers two alternatives for moving forward. Here they are as explained by Gerber:

Proposal A allows the village to take $19,500 of our normal retainer and leave us with $7500 for our services a year for a period of 2 years. We would still provide the same level of service as the village has now; service, staffing and commitment to the residents will not change. Proposal A allows the village to pay one lump sum for a retainer to be able to budget long term, or worrying about charges etc. in proposal B. Proposal B is exactly the same contract that Salem proposed. We would have to change some of the wording as such by agreement of both attorneys and parties. We would not be providing paramedic but still be able to call Salem Paramedics if needed. We would bill the Village $100 for all no transports of patients and bill the Village $100 per hour for all calls not involving patients i.e. fire calls. The biggest change that we allowed in proposal B is that we would still bill the residents of the Village of Silver Lake resident rates as where Salem would not and we will not be billing the patient an extra hundred dollars to be given to the village. So with both proposals we are allowing money from our normal retainer to be given back to the village to help strengthen the Fire Department. In either case we would be giving back, or allowing the Village of Silver Lake to keep approximately $39,000. Both proposals are for a two year contract.”

The Village Board has a regularly scheduled meeting Wednesday. The current agreement between the village and Silver Lake Rescue Inc. expires Dec. 31.

Silver Lake has been considering discontinuing its long-standing contract with Silver Lake Rescue Inc. in favor of an arrangement with Salem Fire/Rescue for EMS with Silver Lake Fire Department firefighters acting as first responders on medical calls.

Silver Lake Rescue is a free standing entity while the Silver Lake Fire Department is part of the village government.

The village has been paying Silver Lake Rescue $27,000 a year for its services. In theory, the agreement with Salem could let Silver Lake keep the $27,000 it now pays to Silver Lake Rescue to bolster fire department funds.

Proponents of that plan said the fire department is in need of attention and funding or it might cease to exist in a few years time. Without its own department, insurance rates would likely increase for village residents. Under the proposed agreement with Salem, Salem would not charge the village a fee, but would be able to bill patients in Silver Lake for services. Salem officials estimate they could take in $15,000-$30,000 in annual revenue under the agreement.

The agreement with Salem Fire/Rescue was voted down last Wednesday at a special Village Board meeting after extensive discussion. Village President Jeff Albrecht said after the last meeting that he cast the deciding vote against the Salem contract — despite supporting its passage — to preserve his chance to call for reconsideration of the measure at this Wednesday’s meeting.

Gerber said the most recent proposal was not a reflection of the Rescue Squad overcharging in the past:

These proposals are in no way to reflect that we have been overcharging. $27,000 retainer for EMS services is extremely fair in a community of 2400 people. We are able to do this for a two year period because we will have to push back some long range planning and also tighten our belt. Basically we are holding the line on any capitol improvement for two years.  These proposals were approved unanimously by the members of Silver Lake Rescue Squad Inc. Basically we listened to the residents and decided that for two years the rescue squad is financially able to do this for 2 years. We listened to the residents and decided that we would commit to this. This way we are able to allow the village the monies needed inject into the Fire Department and a way that we could work together to see what the best possible outcome could be, there is a lot of discussion yet on this issue – but we want to see what is viable.”

Related posts

Silver Lake Village Board rejects EMS contract with Salem — for now

Salem tables rescue agreement with Silver Lake

Silver Lake Rescue counter offer added to special meeting agenda

Silver Lake delays decision on rescue services



  1. rob says:

    if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck??????????

  2. Silverfinns says:

    It is too bad the the village reduced the mil rate for taxes when it is apparent that they need to hire some firemen. All the responsibility of answering rescue calls is still not going to add to the 17-member fire department. The village needs man-power during the day during the week. That solution is to man-up and hire some firemen.

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