Austintown Township trustees announced a joint effort that will provide an ambulance at Austintown Fire Station 1 on Ohio 46. The joint effort is a partnership between the township and Lane Life Trans Ambulance Service.
Through the agreement, Lane will provide the ambulance and a paramedic while the fire department will provide an emergency medical technician to complete the crew. The ambulance would only respond to the Austintown community.
"The nice thing is it will not cost the taxpayers a penny," said Trustee Jim Davis.
Fire Chief Andy Frost said the new ambulance will have a different paint scheme than Lane's usual green and white.
According to Randy Pugh from Lane, residents should see a difference.
"The response time in the township has been around six minutes," Pugh said. "I am hoping to get that down to around four minutes with this venture."
Presently, Lane has two ambulances in the township. One works out of Fire Station 3 on Raccoon Road, while the other is located at Lane on Mahoning Avenue. Both those units respond to the township as well as outlying communities such as Canfield and Boardman. The new ambulance would not leave the township and would guarantee a faster response.
Pugh said the joint venture was made possible through the governor lifting barriers that allow businesses and government to work together. While the ambulance would be part of the fire department fleet at Station 1, Lane would still bill the patient the same as it does right now.
Davis said some details are still being worked out, but the goal is to have the new service in place in January 2014.
On a different issue, trustees approved five more structures for demolition. Zoning Inspector Darren Crivelli said the five will be done under a $35,000 matching grant. He said the township still has $5,500 left from the unmatched grant, but he would need a project closer to that amount to be able to use it.
Structures that were approved by trustees include a single-family dwelling and shed at 1123 Ohltown Road, a single-family dwelling and detached garage at 82 Kenmar Court. A single-family dwelling at 2716 Forest Green Drive, a single-family dwelling and attached garage at 1290 Woodhurst Drive, and a greenhouse and accessory building at 1922 South Raccoon Road.
In other business:
Crivelli said a permit was issued for the completion of the racino, race barns, and accessory buildings with a fee of $344,000. He told trustees the only permit needed now would be for signage.
Police Chief Bob Gavalier announced that a federal grant was received for $250,000 to provide three school resource officers over the next three years. The candidates will likely come from the reserve force, which would take it to one reserve officer left. He said 21 applied for the reserves and that group has been narrowed to nine. He hopes to hire two next month to start building up the reserve to five.