Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Demolition man

Building a structure from scratch is almost never as easy as taking one down. Toppling even the most stalwart of frameworks usually only takes a couple of well-placed charges in the foundation and enough dump trucks to haul away the debris. But demolishing something in this fashion is finite. Once the framework begins to topple, the only way back to a standing structure is to start anew.

And in the case of a not-for-profit ambulance service, there simply is no rebuilding it after a demo crew has done its work. But don’t tell this to Public Safety deconstructionist Ron Kim, who seems hell-bent on tearing down the frame work that has allowed the Saratoga Emergency Medical Service to flourish in the Spa City.

Kim has waged an aggressive campaign to ditch the city’s main ambulatory service in favor of hiring one of two for-profit companies that answered the bizarre request for proposal he issued last month. There is no apparent rhyme or reason for the sudden decision, other than to generate a bit more revenue for the city.

“SEMS is going to come in and say that people will die in the streets if we don’t do this. I haven’t made up my mind, but the reality is that Empire and Mohawk do this in several cities, and there aren’t people dying in the streets in those cities,” Kim told the Saratogian Tuesday.

Naturally, there have been a number of emergency-related personnel who have argued against privatizing the city’s ambulance service. The comments have varied in their content and validity, but they all seem focused at the same point: Snuffing SEMS out of business would create a looming fiscal disaster for the city.

Here’s the math. The city may be able to bilk $100,000 in rent from one of the private companies that would use space at the Westside fire station. This service would then provide residents with what is called ‘basic life support’ care aboard their rigs. City firefighters responding to emergencies would supply paramedics, who would ride aboard the private ambulances in cases that required ‘advanced life support’ services. Under these circumstances, the city would be reimbursed for the care.

It all sounds pretty good up until the for-profit service’s bean counters discover how much more lucrative their business would be if they simply stationed an ambulance crew in Saratoga County instead of paying the city’s ludicrously expensive rent on what amounts to a garage bay. Then if they’re wise, they’ll consider staffing their own paramedics aboard the rig, meaning the city could quite easily find itself with no revenue from the company at all or possibly even worse.

Once SEMS is omitted from the city’s ambulance contract, the company will quickly head toward insolvency. In fact, giving the city contract to anyone other than SEMS would ring the death knell for the four-decade old ambulance company. With the not-for-profit ambulance company liquidated, the city will have to choose between fulfilling any demands the new service may have; or establish their own city-funded service.

Some say this is what Kim wants. The destruction of SEMS would allow him to slowly build a city-owned ambulance fleet. He may even be brazen enough to purchase some of the spoils that will hit the market once he chokes the company out of existence. Some are alleging this is his diabolic plan: Expand the control of the Public Safety Department over to one part of the emergency system it doesn’t control.

But there’s a more logical reason for Kim’s sudden affinity for all things ambulance. Both Empire and Mohawk aren’t shy about dipping into their coffers when campaign season comes around. And while Kim says he hasn’t made up his mind, it’s clear he’s not pulling for SEMS, which most assuredly won’t be bankrolling anyone’s campaign this or any other year.

Mohawk, on the other hand, has a distinct record of getting into the political fray. More specifically, they have a number of curious links with the Albany County Democrats. One of their head spokesmen served under Assembly Majority Leader Ron Canestrari, while another was a campaign spokesman for county Legislator Phil Steck’s unsuccessful run at Congress. Kim, who will surely face a tough election this fall, could probably use all the cash he can muster.

As usual, the victim of this mindless dickering will ultimately be the city’s residents Kim swore to serve. SEMS is an asset to Saratoga Springs and a model other municipalities have viewed as a very well functioning model for an ambulance service that doesn’t require taxpayer funding. But also, SEMS is Saratoga’s ambulance. It’s staffed by professionals who were raised in the community and know the difference between making a buck and providing emergency care for someone who could very well be their neighbor. Let’s hope this is a message Kim gets through his unconscionably thick skull this evening when the three ambulatory suitors give their presentations.

40 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

My problem with Mr. Kim is that he is always airing his plans, problems, etc. in the newspaper. What is wrong with SEMS? Why look for change? The money to be received from such a change seems minimal at best. The old saying " if it's not broken don't fix it " applies here

12:20 PM  
Anonymous freddickerisadick said...

Ever since the Fire Department started responding to medical emergencies there has been animosity towards SEMS by the firemen. I'm sure the bottom line ends up being over money, probably overtime or some other bullshit.
Anyways, Kim has got to protect his "boys" and his turf so fuck what's best for the city.

Election day can't come soon enough as far as I am concerned.

4:54 PM  
Anonymous Pimp my ride; said...

Pimp my ride;

At tonight’s presentation the citizens of Saratoga were treated to three stellar offers

First up

Empire. They promised to have at least one bullet ridden meat wagon on loan from Arbor hill in Albany 24/7 staffed by no more than one registered sex offender per shift. They also promised to send a check make out to Ron Kim for $5000 each month.

Next
Mohawk: They wanted to remind the city that they are a mob owned company and if they weren’t picked they would break Kim’s legs.

Finally
SEMS gave a very boring presentation about how they have not cost the city one dime and how their local compassionate members will all be canned if they are kicked to the curb.

7:21 PM  
Anonymous Kim is corrupt. said...

Mohawk said it best tonight when they wouldn’t commit to the 100000 dollar a year payment saying anything more than fair market value is little more than a bribe.

Kim seems to favor empire that had no such qualms about forking over bribe money. I wonder when they met with Kim in some back room how much he managed to extort.

8:41 PM  
Anonymous Mohawk can be fun to work for said...

I think they should fix a few of the bullet holes and maybe just wash their rides now and then

Seen their help wanted ad in the Times Union. Drivers and attendants needed all shifts. No experience needed will train

I think when to do their runs in Albany who ever has the shotgun seat really has a shotgun.

8:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now that Kim has the ball rolling towards contracting emergency medical services, perhaps the paramedics could also be contracted at a lower rate than the current cost to the taxpayer.

As this rolling ball picks up speed the next logical opportunity for the city would merge the city police department into the county police department.

6:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This may have been the healthest way to explore the options the city has.
Sounds like we have 3 viable options. There is value in each of them.
Public Presentations with the facts and with full disclosure is the way to go and that seems to have been done last night.

6:21 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, once again the one-sided bleeding-heart liberal has aired is filth. And, yeah, I'm referring to the retard whom "owns" this "blogspot".

Firstly, I am a local Paramedic, I've worked for SEMS & Mohawk in the past. I presently work in an area in which the call volume is far less than the City. Oh, and I also live in the city of Saratoga & pay my taxes here.

So, with that said, I believe that I not only have the right opinion, but have the right to voice "my filth", as is granted me under the that lovely little document called "the First Amendment."

SEMS was, back in the mid-90's, the premier ambulance agency to work for. Great pay, busy shifts full of 911 calls & some of the best patient presentations I've ever seen.

Then, something BAD happened. The volunteers went away. Calls were being mutual-aided to surrounding agencies, like Ballston Spa, Wilton & Malta. At the time, thew taxes I was paying was funding Wilton EMS...My ambulance I pay for was handling roughly 30 calls a MONTH in the city of Saratoga.

Most of us that were employees at the time were begging for more staffing, more crews. Unfortunately, we were being run by a pot-smoking retard & the books were being "cooked" by a self-righteous blob. The money that SEMS "pissed" away by refusing to add staffing lined the pockets of other agencies.

The volunteers slowly, but surely, disappeared; in which a vast majority of the volunteers were Skidmore students. Those Skidmore volunteers started going to agencies like Wilton. So, due to the lack of volunteers, additional staff had to be hired, but never scheduled hours.

Thus, the turbulance started. Patient's in the city were waiting for a Paramedic to show up from a surrounding ambulance agency. This could take upto 15-20 minutes at times...And time is something that a patient can NOT take for granted. So, SSFD decided to become a Paramedic agency.

SEMS responded to this "threat" with an additional crew, that FINALLY turned into 2 crews 24 hours a day. Although the solutiuon to the problem wasn't fire department ambulances, it was discussed.

As of the last year to 18 months, SEMS has once again dropped the ball; insufficient staffing, poor management & hiring anyone with a "pulse & a card". Finally, the city of Saratoga Springs has had enough of the "volunteer mentality" & pushed forward with calling SEMS to task.

Simply put, SEMS is doing nothing beyond providing deterimental care to the citizen's of Saratoga Springs by NOT providing staffing and, at times, competent care. Not withstanding, SSFD has an obligation to respond to all EMS calls of a priority nature.

Now, I am not in favor of either Mohawk or Empire Ambulances running calls in the city, but rather, would like to see a system that provides appropriate care to ALL patients in the city. This "mythical" system includes SEMS to join forces with the city's elected officials & do what's right - Devise a plan that covers 99% of ALL calls for help within the city of Saratoga. The remaining 1% of the call volume (about 36 per year) would have to be handled by mutual aid agencies due to multiple, simultaneous 911 medical calls.

So, in conclusion, don't blame SSFD for the current problems. Everyone holds the same level of responsibility when it comes to patient care. We are all responsible for making sure our friends and neighbors get what they need in an emergency - a competant, expierenced provider with equipment that is in good working order & is not from outside the city of Saratoga.

And in retorte to some of the aformentioned "posts" of either uneducated respondants or angry SEMS employees, it's time to realize that volunteers are NO LONGER A VIABLE WAY TO PROVIDE MEDICAL CARE. How many volunteer nurses work at Saratoga Hospital? how many volunteer police officers are in the State of New York? How about how many volunteer Physicians are there practicing in the area? Professionalism comes with a paycheck; it adds a level of security to the quality of care that one receives. I can say for certain that a majority of the Volunteer Paramedic's that have been through SEMS over the years have serious quality of care issues. For example, violation of established protocols, refusing to provide ALS care to certain patients whom need it and a routine lack of "compassion". I know for a fact that "some" providers (who also work for the DOH) have serious patient care "issues", but, alas! Nothing punitive comes of this because of their standing within the Department of Health. Those in the EMS realm will know exactly whom I am referring to...Oh, and this individual is also the one who is feeding the volunteer management of SEMS information on "how to defeat the 'Red Menance'."

I can only hope that the SEMS employees don't suffer because of a volunteers refusal to do what's right...

7:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SEMS hasn't been a Volunteer organization for a long time now. There are only a hand full of volunteers left, most of the daily shifts are staffed with paid people most of whom don't live in this city. The Fire Dept. got into the "EMS" business in the early 90's BECAUSE SEMS couldn't handle it and was dumping calls to other agencies anyway. This still happens to some extent even with PAID staff. It's time the few people involved with volunteering SEMS move on. You provided the best service you could and the city thanks you for it. But it is time that the city takes control of all of its Emergency Services.
.

9:41 AM  
Anonymous Satch Cummings said...

Yeah! Like we are so much better off electing Richard Wirth? Talking about a republican yesman! This guy is an ambulance chasing,dead beat dad chasing Private Dick! In every sense of the word.

12:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's face it, Kim is a greedy asshole. This is all about his cop shop. He'll piss on anything to get his way. Any legitimate idea that isn't his plan is crap. Hey Ronnie, I hope to hell that the folks in town wake up and realize what a stupid, selfish ass you are.

3:05 PM  
Blogger Horatio Alger said...

7:47,

Perhaps I need to reed your comment a bit more closely, or the other way around. I never implied that SEMS was a volunteer organization. I did say it's a 'not-for-profit' agency, which I feel is the best way to run an ambulatory service. Second, I think you're on the right track with your thinking. Certainly, there needs to be a collaboration between SEMS and the firefighters. Without it, the system is fucked. So I guess I'm failing to see where we disagree.

I'm not in favor of eliminating the volunteers, because I think a hybrid system of mostly paid employees is best bolstered by guys who serve altruistically. When paid employees leave, you have your pick of volunteers to fill the service. Colonie's EMS does something similar, and for all intents and purposes, it's a world-class operation.

On a side note, could you be referring to a fellow named Stairs?

Lastly, I'm flattered if you're referring to me as a 'bleeding heart liberal.' I think the last time someone honestly said that about me, I was still trying to angling to bang the prom queen. Man, those were the days...

5:09 PM  
Anonymous DickerisGod said...

Kim seems to have his act together

This week Congress passed $7.7 Billion In Earmarks In 2009 Omnibus Spending Bill

And Saratoga Springs is mentioned
$240,000 in tactical equipment

That is almost as much as a fire truck or a fleet of tactical ambulances

Bravo Kim and Senator Gillibrand...
Next time a Skidmore student gets drunk or someone walks away from 4 Winds... we will be prepared.

http://www.taxpayer.net/user_uploads/file/Appropriations/fy2009/FebOmnibus/CJS%20Earmarks%20Only.pdf
Pg 66

7:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

DickerisGod,

perhaps you should have read the entire item line.

Department of Justice
COPS Law EnForcement Technology
Saratoga Springs Police Department
Tactical Equipment
saratoga Springs. NY
S240.000
Gillibrand, Kirsten E.

In no way does it state it's for the Fire Department.

7:03 AM  
Anonymous ifitaintbrokedontfixit said...

7:47 AM said,

“How many volunteer nurses work at Saratoga Hospital? how many volunteer police officers are in the State of New York? How about how many volunteer Physicians are there practicing in the area? Professionalism comes with a paycheck; it adds a level of security to the quality of care that one receives.”


Your slick term of “Professionalism comes with a paycheck” is just another euphemism for increasing the use of high paid government workers who have poor work habits and poor attitudes. Why is it, when I was a kid cops, teachers, city workers were admired for the considerably better service that they provided? It wasn’t as if they were there for the money because like most other jobs, at the time, they weren’t overpaid. They were there because they liked what did, had pride in what they did, and were good at what they did.

Today it’s all about the money and unions. Many of us are tired of getting screwed every time we pay taxes.

I agree with Horatio; a balanced number of volunteers led by paid professionals is the way to go.

As far as your assumption that there are not enough volunteers, don’t tell that to all of the surrounding communities who have excellent volunteer fire departments, to the Red Cross, Salvation Army, City Missions, or even the Guild at Saratoga Hospital.

9:45 AM  
Anonymous kim 4 mayor said...

The Fedral Stimulus Package now includes the appropriation of $175,000 for the "creation and erection of a publicly displayed statue of Commissioner of Public Safety Ronald Kim withing the city limits of Saratoga Springs, NY."

Hopefully, this will be placed in front of the new PS facility. If not, I would hope the city council finds the funding for another monument for that purpose.

12:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, they can just shoot them and save the ambulance. Need some rationale for tactical gear. I bet Ronnie could get the grant modified so he could buy a couple of phones.

12:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kim was sucker-punched by FD:

There are still people out there who believe that it is a bargain having Firemen assisting at Emergency corps calls.

This is what they do NOT KNOW !

If a Fireman responds to an emergency situation, and gets a cut on his finger, or stubs his toe, he could be retired for the rest of his life, and receive a full salary forever. When he dies, his spouse will receive his full salary, with full benefits, like medical coverage for as long as he/she lives. Yes, there is a female fire-person employed here.

All a Fireman has to do is say that they are hurt, and they are automatically taken off the active roster and replaced by an overtime person. This costs the city thousands upon thousands of dollars every year -- forever.

If you want a union Fireman responding to emergency calls -- not fires -- be prepared to pay FOREVER.

3:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Charles Foster Kane said.....

And here I thought that the only industry in need of immediate medical attention was the newspaper and publishing field.

Its rather scary, knowing that our ambulances need 911 medical attention.

What a world this is.

5:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon 3:37 PM -

Wow! If you're right, how come everybody doesn't become a fireman? According to you, when an injured fireman retires, he receives a full salary "forever."

You say this costs taxpayers thousands of dollars a year "forever."

And you emphasize that we'll have to pay for a union Fireman 'FOREVER."

I always thought firemen were like everybody else and died around 70 or 80 years of age. In fact, I can't ever remember seeing a 90 or 100 or 110 year old retired fireman. When did the firemen's union discover the secret of living FOREVER? And where are they hiding all those 120 year old retired firemen you say we're going to be paying for forever?

7:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

HO:

SEMS has outlived its usefulness. Its staff is inefficient, ineffective, poorly trained, expensive, and downright unsafe.

Ron Kim get it, but for some reason you don't.

Wise up!

7:03 AM  
Blogger Horatio Alger said...

7:03,

That's funny, because I heard the exact opposite. I'd like to see you back up the comment about them being "ineffective, poorly trained, expensive and downright unsafe," because NONE of those issues have been mentioned in the dialogue about the service. Furthermore, all ambulance services are strictly regulated by the state Department of Health. If there were complaints about SEMS or if they were unable to muster a crew, you'd be hearing it from the state.

Listen, if SEMS is racking up dropped calls and relying on outside ambulances, you have the start of a serious problem that would warrant either privatizing the service or augmenting it with a firefighter rig. And if they're taking in excess of 15 minutes to get to calls, you've got another bullet to fire at SEMS. But like I said, these are not the issues that promulgated the RFP.

Kim said point blank, he wants to make money on the ambulance service like other cities do. That's it. Nothing more. And in my opinion, you are compromising your ambulance service if you have it privatized. If you've ever ridden in a Mohawk or Empire ambulance, you'd know what I'm talking about.

Trust me, if Kim thought for one minute SEMS was even half as bad as you describe, he'd be shouting it with a bull horn atop city hall. Or maybe he'd create a SEMS 'failure-o-meter.'

Speaking of the failure-o-meter, where is it these days? I haven't seen it around. Last I heard it was doing a tour out west. I'll have to message the commish.

7:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Now Kim is after youth sports again by killing off coin drops. First the rec center, now Little League coin drops, what's next?, plowing under the hockey rink because kids might slip on the ice. What an idiot.

3:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

3:37 anonymous

If you think it's a big joke about firemen being paid forever, just check with the city of Saratoga Springs, and find out how many firemen have been out on 207-A.
It's a free ride for those who choose to claim false injuries, off-the-job injuries, etc.
Where were all the big fires where they got injured?
Find any yet?

7:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey Ronnie, it's only peoples lives - screw them - it's better that you feather your political nest in your preparation for - assembly, state senate, federal senate, or mayor. To hell with the people that need functioning city services - you are too much more important. Props Man! Yo the man!

7:47 AM  
Anonymous Nipsey Russell said...

Screw Ron Kim and his feathers. While we are at it screw Scott Johnson too. He's as bad or worse than Kim. Worse yet they both have deputies who are incompetent. Why not bring back Tom "The Tulip" McTygue to really screw things up!

9:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

" Taxpayers don't be fooled. The driving force behind this is a self-serving fire dept heirarchy and Mr. Kim himself. Most of the firefighters do not support this. Do any of you realize the fire department has ALREADY quietly bought an ambulance (just sits in the garage, see it for yourself at 60 lake ave) mr. kim is building an empire.
Once SEMS is out and the Empire/Mohawk contract is not renewed, by default public safety will take over all calls to justify more hiring and larger budgets; paramedic training for firefighters has been in the works for years. Fraudulent documentation has already been submitted to obtain grant money to do such and many tax dollars have been wasted to provide this VERY redundant service. The Saratogian writer needs to do his homework and obtain the grant documentation as well as the true cost of paramedic training from city hall. What has it cost us already in training, overtime pay to do that training, and supplies?
Should we taxpayers be burdened with paying for a service a private non-profit is already providing to us at no cost? " ....................This is from the Satatogian comment section. This is true and the FD has another amblunce in the 2009 budget.....Don't think for a minute Ron Kim is looking for revenue, its about building the biggest public saftey Empire (with more than 80 cops and a new police station) you can imagine, complete with raises and pensions. All while the people paying for this are faced with pay cuts and job losses. This is not only unfair; it is irresponsible and economically unsustainable. The end result will be far from what these greedy FD and PD hierarchy are expecting!

5:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Fire Dept needs to justify its own existence somehow.
Either start their own fires or become paramedics.

7:16 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

THe lack of knowledge and scare tactics blogged about on this page are startling. Simply put, SEMS does a good job and the Fire department does an excellent job as well. When the last fire firefighter test was offered, a record low number of people signed up for the exam. If this job is such a score than where was all the applicants? Additionally, I have never heard of anyone retiring due to a needle stick or getting hurt on an ems call. If you have proof of this occuring I would love to know. Besides Horatio Alger, most of these posts are ridiculous rants by uneducated and uninformed individuals.

12:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kim's problems may start on Saturday. If there is not an endorsemnt of Yepsen, Kim and Franck at the Democratic meeting on 3/7. A primary challenger to Ron Kim will emerge shortly more out of frustration and concern for the city. Also the candidate selection committee led by Peter Tulin is hassling any endorsements at the orders of the real chairman Nancy Goldberg.

2:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Com on Nipsey, there is no one as bad as Kim. Even the blind can see he is a selfish ass.

5:20 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Horatio,
I feel obligated to appologize & clarify some of your queries posed to me, the former SEMS employee.

Firstly, you are correct when you stated that it is a "Not for Profit" ambulance service. The only way they were granted this status 40-some years ago was by being volunteer.

Secondly, I intentionally threw some mud in your direction to see if you hold the same creedance in the First Amendment as I. And you do. For that, I applaud you. There was a "personal" attack in there, and you still posted it. Bravo.

Thirdly, the afformentioned "name" is not Mr. Stairs. Jim was a short lived, no-show manager that was hired more-over as a name, rather than an actual progressive leader. The individual I am referring to is actually (reportedly) a female who also works for NYS Department of Health Bureau of EMS & a volunteer within the rank & file of SEMS. For fear of reprisal, I will not divulge anymore information. Those involved in EMS will know whom I refer.

And, if I may, I'd like to retorte some of the other venom that other "anti-fire department" folks have posted.

I have the utmost respect for SSFD; they do the best with minimal staffing issues. These guys don't have a "blood-thirst" for running an ambulance, but are willing to do what's right for the constituants of Saratoga. Most of these guys are caught in a proverbial "war" of sorts. They don't want to loose their identity of a "professional firefighter", but must also follow orders.

With regards to the ambulance the SSFD supposedly purchased, this is a half-truth. They were GRANTED funds to purchase a vehicle over 3 years ago. Presently, there is an "ambulance" type vehicle parked at 60 Lake Ave., but it is not allowed to respond as an ambulance. The City of Saratoga did not expend any taxpayer funds to obtain this vehicle. So, lets put that one to bed.

With regards to SEMS & their operations, I can tell you this much, they do the best they can, all the while their hands are tied by the few remaining volunteers left. To put this in perspective, think of South Africa in the mid-80's...The few are in charge of the many, and they're screwing it up royally. They DO have issues with staffing, with equipment that is safe/in proper working order. But, the VOLUNTEER management would rather put a proverbial "band-aid on a shot gun wound."

As for Mr. Kim, I see him trying to do the right thing with what he has. There is internal & political strife that has caused a vast majority of the issues at hand. Mr. Kim is standing up for what he believes in and, in my humbled opinion, is doing a pretty good job. The general consenseus is that "overtime is rampant". Well, overtime is up, but that is due to an APPROPRIATE LACK OF STAFFING by both public safety entities. How much money do we spend on flowers every year? How about the amount of money spent to keep Caroline St. clean after a drunken ruckus during track season?

You see, money makes the world go around. Most people don't care WHO shows up when they call 911, just as long as someone shows up when they call. Let me put things in perspective...

The New York City Fire Department (aka: FDNY), handled 911,317 calls in 2008; this does NOT include transporting EMS calls. There are 503 non-ambulance units in FDNY. That averages out to be 1181.7634 calls per unit per year.

Maple Avenue answers (this is an educated guess) about 400 calls a year & Wilton Fire answers about (this, too, is an educated guess) about 220 calls a year. That's about 620 calls a year between the 2 departments. Combined, the 2 departments have about 18 pieces of apparatus. This averages to 34.4444 calls per unit per year...

SSFD has about 12 pieces of apparatus, and handles (this is a rough guess) about 4000 calls per year. This averages out to be 333.3333 calls per unit per year.

Amazing that the Town of Wilton has more fire apparatus, but handles roughly 1/10th the call volume per unit that SSFD handles. And, this is a normal trend through out Saratoga county. So, if you really want to break it down to dollars and cents: the volunteer "costs" about 10 times more than the career firefighter (this is based on the assumption that they are equal, as previously referred).

So, the next time you're complaining about the "lazy City firefighters" and how much overtime they're getting (or not getting), look at the simple cost-benefit analysis I just put out there for you. We are getting off pretty cheap by having them around.

And now we want to get a financial return on the investment of their city funded education? Basically, we (as tax payers) will get about $300,000 a year back into the city coffers for the members of SSFD to do the job's that they are already doing?!?! Seems like a no brainer in this time of fiscal crisis...

7:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope our city chooses quality service(SEMS) over making a quick buck. Just ask anyone who has been treated by SEMS or a family member you will hear wny we need to keep this great organization. I do not work for SEMS but have dealt with them for medical issues and could not imagine receiving any better care. Dont ruin a good thing.

3:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is an elephant in the room......

5:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In 3 1/2 years has anyone outside his own department ever felt that he was representing their interests?

What's the joke about the ambulance chasing lawyer?

6:52 PM  
Anonymous Kyle York said...

http://www.saratogian.com/articles/2009/03/03/news/doc49acacef9f48c126924752.txt

10:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear KY Jelly,

What the hell are you smoking?

Your writing is beyond pedantic. Please simplify your ramblings, and make coherent points.

Yours Truly,

The "Critical Reader"

5:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Horatio:
That 7:45 am posting by a fireman must have been submitted 15 minutes before his shift ended at the West Side station.

Ask him/her if the SEMS people get the same benefit package as the firemen.

12:22 PM  
Anonymous Kyle York said...

Dear Critical Reader,

PEDANTIC! : )
It is SO good to see you trying to use BIG words! I am sorry that so many of mine go soaring over your head.
But fear not friend-- I understand DR. SEUSS is still available in print...with funny SIMPLE pictures.
Don't stop trying!

-Kyle York
OH The Places You'll Go!

8:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just can't figure out how a guy like Tulin ends up anywhere near candidate selection. Scary. This dude's made the papers for child support arrears (still won't pay the wife or the girlfriend I hear), protective orders and probably some other troubles that the taxpayers have paid out for. This isn't what the dems stand for.

And, the birdcage liner, known as the Saratogian is of course including him all they can in their articles, suprisingly, so is the Gazette that's ratted him out to the public for child support arrears and more.

Dude, if you can't manage to support your children, get out of our politics!! We deserve better.

10:38 AM  

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