The implementation of a county-funded and operated Emergency Medical Services department continues to make progress as the Marlboro County Council approved an operating budget of $2.7 million at Tuesday's meeting.
County Administrator Ron Munnerlyn explained the resolution which amended the 2018-19 budget to establish an enterprise fund and capital and expenses budget for EMS.
"As we get closer and closer to actually having ambulances running, we are taking care of a lot of details and finetuning the financial part of this," he said.
This budget includes money for the current EMS provider Marlboro Rescue and $1.2 million in capital outlay for ambulances, other equipment and needs.
Revenues for the budget included dedicated millage, $1.1 million; Marlboro County General Hospital Charity Trust, $300,000; lease purchase proceeds $850,000; and transfer from other fund reserves $500,000.
The 2019-20 projected budget was provided to show that a county-operated EMS will cost $3 million annually.
Munnerlyn noted the budget will include the dedicated millage and expected to receive about $1.3 million from billing and insurance companies for the service.
The first ambulance has been delivered and was parked beside the administration building for the council to see.
Northeastern Technical College campus site on Marlboro Street will be the EMS headquarters site. It is part of a swap with NETC.
Munnerlyn said they are getting closer to hiring people.
"We are looking forward to being in motion by July 1," he said.
Council Chair Dr. Carolyn Prince said the county is moving in the right direction to ensure citizens that their health and welfare is being taken seriously.
Council members also approved the second reading of ordinance #781 to provide for the franchising procedures and standards for private ambulance services in Marlboro County.
In other business, county council members:
--approved the second reading of ordinance #779 to approve the conveyance of a 50-foot wide easement and lease agreement to Duke Energy Progress LLC;
--approved the second reading of ordinance #780 authorizing the execution of municipal election transfer and costs fee agreement between Marlboro County and the town of McColl;
--approved resolution #03-19-01 designating the month of April as the South Carolina Fair Housing Month for 2019;
--approved resolution 03-19-03 authorizing submission of a grant application to South Carolina Rural Infrastructure Authority by Marlboro County on behalf of Marlboro Water Company for RIF grant funds for construction of a new well and associated Infrastructure in the amount of $355,700 and authorization to accept grant if awarded.
--learned the county-wide "Clean-Up Day" is from 8 a.m.-noon May 4.
Munnerlyn recognized the following employees with five or more years of service to the county through the month of February: Dwan Bostic, 16 years; Lawrence Brand, 17 years; Ronald Covington, 25 years; Vanessa Dowdy, nine years; Anna Frye, 21 years; Barbara Latham, 15 years; and Kevin Thomas, 30 years.