Leslie Brennan Against SJI Fire District/EMS Levy

Shouldn’t “We the People” have a say in whether the SJC Fire District and the Hospital District (EMS) integrate?  Shouldn’t the voters and those who will pay the new taxes have the choice in deciding to approve or not approve the merging of these two entities first, before voting for a combined levy?  Or has it already been decided for us? Is this already a “done deal”?

I believe, the SJC Fire District commissioners and supporters are prematurely requesting tax payers to approve a levy, based on a merger of Fire and EMS that voters haven’t even had a chance to consider!

Fire and EMS separated thirty (30) years ago partly because tax money was being disproportionately allocated. The number of medical calls have always outweighed fire calls, yet more funds were delegated to fire equipment and training of the volunteer fire personnel, than was used on medical equipment and training of EMTs and Paramedics. It was the imbalanced division of funds that led EMS to join the Hospital District and part ways with the SJC Fire District.  

The SJC Fire District No. 3 Proposition No. 1 / Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Levy, on page 63 of the Voters’ Pamphlet, it states that: “The hospital district, which currently employs several paramedics providing advanced life support services to San Juan Island, “IS” transferring those employees over to the fire district”. Yet, if this levy does not pass, this statement is not true.

And, “However, the hospital district has agreed to no longer have an EMS levy, so this EMS levy “will replace that”. Yet, if this levy does not pass, this is also not true.

Based on all the reports from the Hospital Board Members and the community, EMS is doing a great job. EMS has the best cardiac save rates in the country. With on call paramedics and paid EMT’s stationed at the EMS building, we have great response times, one that exceeds other cities in this country.  The staff and volunteers are a dedicated, well trained group of people who focus on providing a high level of professional medical care to our community. It’s their calling and their reason for being in the medical field.  Our volunteer Firefighters are great, but generally place their focus on fighting fires.

If our Emergency Medical Service is already this good, then why are we attempting to go thirty (30) years back into time to change this? 

Please vote NO on Proposition 1

Leslie Brennan