Village in need of EMTs

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Bosque Farms village councilors closed out the year with approvals for funding and agreements that will serve the people of the village.

They voted unanimously to apply for emergency medical services funds for the 2013 fiscal year.

Village Clerk/Administrator Gayle Jones said since the number of runs are down this fiscal year, funding for next year will be effected.

"People have jobs. We've had trouble filling shifts and getting out to calls. It's a state-wide problem," Jones said.

Mayor Wayne Ake said he and Jones have been trying to recruit additional active volunteers for the EMS department.

"So many of the young guys that we hired on the services are actually working for someone and getting paid now," Ake said. "We've talked about going out to the college again to recruit. They have to pay for their own course, but hopefully after they've put in their time, we can reimburse them."

Jones said the fire department has asked for a first responder class over the winter, and four other people have expressed interest.

Councilor Dolly Wallace asked how much the EMT basic class cost per person. Jones said it was about $450 each, but it really depended on the number of people enrolled.

"At one point, they were going to make it a flat fee, but now it's gone back to being divided among the students," Jones said.

Ake said the EMS accreditation was done through the University of New Mexico, with the school providing the materials, equipment and certifying the class.

"Maybe we can get Peralta involved," he said. "We used to worry about having too many."

The council also approved a memorandum of understanding with Valencia County for the Older Americans Program.

Ake said the village was between a rock and a hard place because some of the language in the old MOU was unacceptable.

"But they pay for the meal service," he said.

Before they approved the MOU, Councilor Russ Walkup pointed out several places where reference to the village's community center was inconsistent, suggesting it simply be referred to as "the center" throughout the document.

However, Bosque Farms resident and Older Americans Program Advisory Board President Lillie McNabb said she felt it would be more appropriate to refer to it as a senior meal site.

"This is not a county site. They can't control us beyond delivery of the meals," McNabb said.

Jones agreed, saying she thought the MOU needed to refer to the facility as a "community center/senior meal site. The original MOU had hours of operation and after that, a paragraph saying that the center director was to prohibit all other activities (except for seniors.)"

Councilor Bill Kennedy suggested that the agreement refer to the Bosque Farms Community Center/senior meal site, just to be absolutely clear as to ownership and use of the building.

"We want to do what we want with our own building," McNabb added. "The county just provides meals."

Walkup asked that references to "center director" be changed to "Bosque Farms Community Center director."


-- Email the author at jdendinger@news-bulletin.com.