I have the solution-letters

I have a solution to the EMS Levy. Let’s just get rid of it! Instead, let’s make EMS a voluntary service that you can subscribe to or not. For those of us who want a professional EMS to show up at our door in a matter of minutes with just a phone call, then we can opt in and have that service added to our property taxes. For those who don’t want EMS services, they can opt out, and choose to pay for it if and when they might need it. Consider this, if you opt out, and your grandmother is here visiting for one of our busy holidays, and chokes on your special margarita mix and goes into cardiac arrest, you can still call 911 and ask for help. The 911 operator will ask your name and check if you are a subscriber, and if not, then they will ask for a valid credit or debit card, including pin number. While they are verifying the charges, your grandmother is on the floor looking at you for help. Oh wait, it’s the holiday weekend and all of a sudden there are more calls into 911 at the same time as your call. You are placed on hold as you are not a subscriber to 911 services. As you listen to the pleasant music, the 911 operator is helping two or three other callers who are subscribers and you are put at the end of the que until they can help you. Since this is an optional program 911 EMS services have been cut way back, and they really can only handle the subscribers that are paying, so those who have opted out have to wait until all of the subscribers have been taken care of. You say I don’t have a favorite grandmother, and besides, I could just load granny into my Subaru and head over to the hospital, because I am already paying for that, then stop at the library because I am paying for that also or move to Anacortes because I am sure they have free EMS.

Mike LaLande

Friday Harbor