Council green-lights 1-year contract with ambulance service

Jeff Meyer, a member of the Tracy Ambulance Service board, spoke to the Tracy City Council on Monday in regards to the ongoing contract talks between the City and the service. Photo / Per Peterson

If accepted, contract should be adopted at February meeting

By Per Peterson

The Tracy City Council on Monday approved a motion to update its contract with the Tracy Ambulance Service.

After an initial motion was taken off the table, the council voted unanimously to enter into a one-year contract with the Tracy Ambulance Service for $25,000 for 2022, pending acceptance by the ambulance board. The ambulance service will be required to provide form RD 442-2, along with the spreadsheet the ambulance uses to determine the township’s and city’s contributions, which is based on population. These forms are to be provided to the city by March 31 each year.

Jeff Meyer, who sits on the ambulance service board, told the council Monday he will take the City’s offer to the full board for consideration. The service had initially asked for $30,000 per year. If approved, the council will officially adopt the new contract at its Feb. 14 meeting.

“I will gladly present that to the board,” Meyer said, “if a dollar amount is included and an expectation of what forms you want.”

Much of the hour-plus-long discussion Monday once again revolved around the service’s income, expenses, assets and liabilities, which the City maintains it never received. The last ambulance contract for $140,000 signed in 2017 stipulated that the service shall prepare and file with the City on or before the end of March each year an annual financial statement of its operations, including disclosing income, expenses, assets and liabilities.

“We’ve received reports from 2016 to 2020 — reports they filed with the state; they include all their income and expenses,” Tracy City Administrator Erik Hansen said. “We don’t have 2021, of course, and what we also do not have — that they are contractually obligated to provide to the City — is a statement of assets and liabilities, basically a balance sheet.”

The council was given a spreadsheet that was prepared by the City and created off reports that were provided by the service; the numbers were a reflection of the service’s operating expenses and did not include bad debt and depreciation. That sheet was one of two documents that have been provided to the City, the other that contained numbers which, Hansen said, were mislabeled.

“All of this could’ve been resolved if we had received the information four months ago when we asked for it,” he said. “So I’m not sure what the hurry is at this point. We’ve been told by the ambulance service that they’re struggling and their expenses are going up and without the support of the City they can’t afford to do their job, so we wanted to know, what is the actual situation with the ambulance service?” said Hansen.

See this week’s Headlight Herald for more on this article.