Townships discuss potential for sharing services


A continuing conversation about consolidating fire and emergency medical services took place Oct. 4.  Faced with rising operational costs, equipment costs, demanding training requirements, rising medical calls and fewer people ready to answer the call some local township leaders are researching an idea of consolidating services.
Supervisors from Blissfield, Riga, Ogden, Palmyra and Madison townships met at the Blissfield Township Hall.  Blissfield Township hall.  Deerfield Township Supervisor Ron Cousino was also invited but did not attend. Blissfield Township Al Navarro said the reason stated was that at the current time Deerfield has a full roster and no pressing needs that would compel them to look at alternatives.
Ogden Township Supervisor Richard Marks attended the meeting mainly he said for information.
“We are very happy with Madison, he said, we have no reason to look elsewhere.”
Riga Township Supervisor Gary Kastel said that he is looking at a possibility of a merger between at least Riga and Blissfield townships for fire and EMS services.  No information was released on any concept of what that could look like.
Navarro said moving forward it is likely that only he and Kastel will continue with the discussion as the other local townships did not see a need to move forward with the discussion.
Whether the idea is feasible or not, both Kastel and Navarro said they owe it to the residents to look into any possibilities that could strengthen services for the communities.
“A lot of things would have to be worked out, but only, Riga and (Blissfield) are serious about working together,” Navarro said of the current situation.

For the complete story, please see the Oct. 11, 2017, edition of The Advance.