Sumner board briefed on rescue services

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SUMNER — Chief of Buckfield Rescue, Lisa Buck, and West Paris Town Manager John White, representing Tri Town Rescue, explained their services to selectmen Tuesday night.

Buckfield and Tri Town jointly serve the town, with Buckfield covering about 270 residents and Tri Town approximately 584.

Buck gave the board a synopsis of the department. Buckfield Rescue covers areas of Buckfield, a portion of Sumner and a portion of Hartford. Buck said that it has two ambulances and the department has budgeted to permit to the paramedic level. It has one paramedic, one intermediate emergency medical technician, nine EMT basics and eight drivers.

White explained that Greenwood and West Paris have voted to explore an interlocal agreement where the towns would jointly own Tri Town. If Sumner chose to pay $5,000 to become a part owner, the three towns would own Tri Town. White said the money would be used to retire the debt on one of the ambulances.

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Both representatives said the time of travel to a hospital is of primary concern to patients. Both said they would go to the nearest hospital in case of an emergency and if it wasn’t an emergency, the patient could choose the hospital. They both said that the rates were in keeping with what insurance paid and if people didn’t have insurance, they would be billed.

Voters will get to choose which way they want to go with the rescue question in August at the annual town meeting. Chairman Mark Silber of the Board of Selectmen said the dividing lines for rescue operations should be studied again if voters choose to go with both services, as it does now. He said the lines dividing the population are not consistent with the closest responder.

In other news, Steve Peters and Ed Hinshaw presented the board with an inventory of all the Sumner cemeteries. Hinshaw said it had taken about six months for them to compile the list. He suggested the board consider establishing an official cemetery committee.

Silber thanked Hinshaw and Peters for their work.

Buckfield Town Manager Glen Holmes presented his budget for the jointly-owned waste transfer station to the board. Holmes said the transfer station is doing well and Sumner’s part did increase over last year. One reason was because of a 3 percent wage increase for the two station workers. He said the cost may go up some next year because they should do one major project, which would be sealing the pavement at the station.

The total operating budget for the year 2010-11 is $161,879.

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