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Mechanic requirement causes friction
by Adam Elrod
January 16, 2013 02:46 PM | 1303 views | 0 0 comments | 11 11 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Paulding County Board of Commissioners is working to complete a new annual agreement for ambulance services despite disagreement on a requirement a mechanic be on call around the clock.

The board voted last week to enter into an agreement with Dallas-based Clark EMS, granting Chairman David Austin power to negotiate with owner Sam Clark on final details.

Through Post 2 Commissioner Todd Pownall, Clark sent his objection to a contract requirement that he hire a mechanic to be on call 24 hours a day.

However, county administrator Michael Jones said the contract states Clark has to make arrangements with a mechanic to be on call 24 hours a day — not that he has to hire one.

“We really want to keep that [24-hour requirement] in there,” he said.

Post 4 Commissioner David Barnett said having a mechanic on call is needed.

“It is a life-or-death situation,” he said.

The requirement has been in Clark’s annual contract for about 12 years, Jones said.

The county will pay Clark a $250,000 supplement for his services in 2013.

Clark said Monday he planned to speak with his attorney and had not spoken with Austin about the contract.

A new part of the agreement, which Clark agrees with, will require ambulances to respond to 90 percent of calls within 13 minutes of being received. The percentage will be measured monthly, said county attorney Jayson Phillips.

The first time Clark does not meet the 90 percent requirement they will have to submit a plan to the county on how they will improve their time. A second offense will bring a fine, Phillips said.

In other action, commissioners approved a request to enter into a contract with the Georgia Department of Transportation to reimburse the county for past land acquisition.

The county will be reimbursed $4,584,504 from the Federal Aviation Administration for land at Paulding Northwest Atlanta Airport, said airport director Blake Swafford.

Commissioners also heard from residents of The Georgian golf community in southern Paulding County.

Residents asked commissioners about the possibility of county maintenance of subdivision roads and construction of a new fire station.

Anthony Destefano, chairperson for the advisory committee for The Georgian, said they also wanted commissioners to consider passing a county ordinance regulating golf carts. Commissioners took no action on the request.

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