A meeting was held on Monday, September 9 at 7 pm at the Mint Hill Fire Department on Fairview Road to discuss the future of ambulance service in Mint Hill and to provide the public with information on the current challenges facing the department which serves over 27,000 people.
Mint Hill Volunteer Fire Department’s board chairman Jerry Mullis welcomed the crowd and set the agenda for the evening.
“The purpose of this meeting is to explain the improvements within our department to our community,” he said. “We want to explain the approach on our plan to charge for EMS service for transportation to a hospital.”
Mullis used historical data and information about current trends across the country to explain the need to raise funds to support additional positions for staff who would be solely responsible for EMS transport services.
“For 38 years we have provided free service for transportation to a hospital,” says Mullis, “Now we’re about the only volunteer fire department that provides transportation to hospitals, period.”
Life-long Mint Hill resident and current Fire Chief John Phillips started his career in 1974 at age 16.
“A lot has changed since I joined the department,” says Phillips. “If we’re going to continue the level of service the people of Mint Hill deserve, we need to take measures to keep up with the growth.”
Population increases as well as economic growth that has come with the completion of I-485, has the department stretched to the breaking point.
In reviewing the call data, MHVFD reports a 1,323 percent increase in call volume from 1999 to 2012. According their records, the department responded to 252 calls in all of 1999. In 2012, that number jumped remarkably to 3,334. By the end of 2013, that number is expected to keep pace with the 10 to 15 percent annual growth and reach around 3,600 calls.
The increase has not been impetus for Mecklenburg County to provide more funding. In fact, any funding that the department has been receiving from Mecklenburg County will be phased out by July, 2014.
The need to raise funds in now greater than ever, and charging insurance companies for ambulance service for transportation to a hospital for Mint Hill residents is what the department will be doing beginning around October 1, 2013.
Billing will occur for ambulance services provided to all those who reside outside of Mint Hill.
The goal is to hire six new employees whose sole responsibility will be to provide EMS transport services.
“Our current staff provides both fire suppression and EMS transport services,” says Chief Phillips.
The intention is to have the money raised through billing provide the necessary funds for hiring the additional personnel.
At this point the funding is critical to keeping the level of service citizens are used to.
“Without charging we would have to cease providing EMS transport,” says Chief Phillips.
The next public meeting will be September 23, 2013 at 7:00 pm at 8313 Fairview Road in Mint Hill. Call 704-491-6324 for more information, or email Chief Phillips at firstname.lastname@example.org
A fire that occurred last night in the 10000 block of Little Creek Road is still under investigation by authorities.
The home was unoccupied at the time of the fire, and was called in by the neighbors. Assistant Chief Moore, of Mint Hill Volunteer Fire Department, said the damage to the home was minimal, and estimated the cost of damage at less than $15,000.
The cause of the fire, which started underneath the house, is still unknown.
A mobile home fire displaced four Mint Hill residents early Monday morning on Rivendell Road.
The fire is suspected to have been caused by electrical issues around 5:30 a.m. The home was empty at the time, and the 911 call was made by a neighbor after seeing smoke coming from the mobile home.
The home belongs to Heather Walker, who lives there with her three children. The family lost nearly all their possessions, their cat, and medications needed for a son that has diabetes and a daughter suffering from Leukemia.
November 30 will mark the end of Beth Hamrick’s 32-year career with the Town of Mint Hill. Hired in 1980 as a receptionist, Hamrick’s role has changed over the years. She has served as the secretary to the town administrator, the Planning Board coordinator, secretary to the Board of Adjustment, and the deputy clerk. In 1985 she became the town clerk, the position from which she is retiring.
Throughout the years, Hamrick has seen Mint Hill grow, tripling in population. She has served with numerous commissioners and four mayors. She has served in the town’s last three town hall locations: the McEwen Shopping Center, the building on Matthews-Mint Hill Road, and the newest building on Mint Hill Village Lane. Hamrick took classes for various certifications, including the certificate of municipal clerk and master municipal clerk.
Barack Obama (D)
President Obama won reelection in a convincing victory, clinching 336 electoral votes and 50 percent of the popular vote, wining all swing states except North Carolina, while Republican challenger Mitt Romney secured only 206 electoral votes and 48 percent of the popular vote. In North Carolina, the percentages were reversed, with Romney winning 50.4 percent of the popular vote, while Obama secured 48.3 percent.
US House of Representatives
Robert Pittenger (R)
Republican Robert Pittenger narrowly secured election, replacing the retiring incumbent Sue Myrick, and taking 51.8 percent of the vote in the three-county area that includes Mecklenburg, Union, and Gaston counties. Democrat Jennifer Roberts won 45.7 percent of the vote, and Independent Curtis Campbell won 2.6.
Pat McCrory (R)
Former Charlotte mayor Republican Pat McCrory secured the North Carolina governor’s race, defeating Democratic challenger Walter Dalton by 11.5 percentage points. McCrory won the race with 54.7 percent, and Dalton won 43.2. Libertarian candidate Barbara Howe took 2.1 percent of the vote.