The Mat-Su Borough Assembly has approved the scope of work and budget for a new emergency medical services facility in the Northern Susitna Valley.
Currently, EMTs are based out of fire station 11-2 near the junction of the Talkeetna Spur Road and the Parks Highway. Assembly Member Randall Kowalke says the current accommodations for medical first-responders near the ‘Y’ are inadequate.
“We have our ambulance folks’ setting sleeping behind some canvas curtains that are about five feet tall…in a fire station. It’s not real good. It’s third-world at best.”
Borough Manager John Moosey says the Mat-Su relies on part-time and volunteer first responders in the Northern Valley, and that a new facility would greatly benefit emergency medical service.
“As you know, the farther you get out, the less folks have the ability to pay–based on there’s not a good population base. There’s no commercial up there. With all the recreation stuff up there, this is really key.”
Funding for the new facility would come from unspent funds from previously bonded projects. Whereas fire departments are often funded through service areas in unincorporated parts of the borough, EMS is an area-wide expenditure. Because the project will use funds the borough has left over from other projects, Assembly Member Kowalke says it will not impact property taxes.