Terre Haute and Vigo County residents may see an increase in their ambulance and EMS fees. Fire Chief Jeff Fisher asked the city council to raise the fees at the sunshine city council meeting Thursday..
If the council approves the measure, ambulance fees for Terre Haute residents would go from $400 to $550. The fire department believes that rising equipment and training costs makes the increase necessary. The money helps pays for new fire trucks, self-contained breathing apparatus gear, ambulances, and provides operating cots for THFD training center.
The THFD collects nearly $1.4 million annually from the fee. If the proposed increases go into effect, the city would collect an estimated $1.5-1.6 million.
Councilman Todd Nation called the increase a sign of the times and added that the city is cash poor.
“I haven't seen anything that is exorbitant or excessive,” he explained.
Councilman Neil Garrison expressed concern that the rate hike would affect people who have low or fixed incomes. If someone cannot pay it, he can apply for a hardship waiver. The THFD grands the majority of these requests.