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New Scotland Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, December 4, 2008

For Voorheesville Ambulance Service
First five months of revenue recovery nets $13K

By Philippa Stasiuk

VOORHEESVILLE — After years of controversy over billing for ambulance services, the village board here heard its first report at its Nov. 25 meeting on revenue recovery payments.

Trustees Richard Berger and John Stevens reported that the Voorheesville Ambulance Service  for the period from May 1 to Sept. 30 netted $13,339.29.  The gross amount is $14,821.43, the difference which was paid to the billing agent.

The town of New Scotland receives 61 percent, amounting to $8,136.97 and Voorheesville will receive 39 percent, amounting to $5,202.33

In 2005, the ambulance squad had decided against revenue recovery, where the insurance companies of patients are billed for services. Since it’s a volunteer squad, members felt that charging for services didn’t seem right, Captain Lawrence Pakenas explained last year.

The village board and the town board requested last year that the squad reconsider because billing could alleviate the tax burden. For the 2007-08 fiscal year, the Voorheesville Area Ambulance was allotted $41,000, and $16,000 for the Length of Service Award Program so the village’s total expense for the rescue squad was $57,000.

At the November meeting, Mayor Robert Conway commented on the new practice, “Hopefully, all of the years of anxiety over that will have proved to be for naught.” 

Also on Nov. 25, the Voorheesville Ambulance Service elected new officers.  Captain Pakenas, who served two consecutive terms of two years, will be stepping down. Former First Lieutenant Thom Smith will move up to the position of captain, beginning on Jan. 1, 2009. However, according to Pakenas’s wife, Rosemarie, who is stepping down as recording secretary, the former officers are, “already handing over the reins and meeting with the new officers to show them the ropes.” 

The other officers are as follows: Kate Odell, first lieutenant; Denise Garrah, second lieutenant; Jamie DiBona, recording secretary; Peg Sippel, corresponding secretary; Rick Keller, health and safety; and Nick Solomos, treasurer. 

Other business

In other business, the village board:

— Approved an appeal from Trustee David Cardona for another apartment at 34 South Main, which is owned by Cardona;

— Heard condolences from Mayor Conway for the family of Ruth Patterson;

— Heard from Conway that the sewer study conducted for the village will be discussed at the next monthly meeting on Dec. 23; and

— Heard from Conway that there will be a holiday party following next month’s board meeting on Dec. 23.  The meeting will be at 7 p.m. and the party will begin after the meeting. Everyone is invited.

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