HEBRON – It’s definitely adding up. Hebron Fire Chief Randy Weekly told Union Township Trustees Monday night that EMS billing raised approximately $131,000 since the program began July of last year.
"That’s about the amount we projected," said Weekly. Weekly estimates the township will receive about $40,000 of the total.
Bills are generated when anyone is transported by a Hebron squad. If the patient lives in the Village of Hebron or the portion of Union Township covered by the township’s contract with Hebron, bills are only sent to their health insurance carrier, Medicare or Medicaid. They are not billed personally.
All other patients, including Village of Buckeye Lake residents, will be billed personally if they don’t have health insurance or qualify for Medicare or Medicaid. However, unpaid bills are not turned over to a collection agency.
"We haven’t spent any of that money so far," said Weekly. "It’ll have to go into next year’s budget." He expects the money will go toward emergency vehicles and equipment, and Weekly hopes it will reduce the department’s need for additional property tax levies.
In other Union Township news:
• Trustee President John Slater said he expects no significant change in coverage when the township changes health insurance providers Oct. 1. He said the township will save $38,000 annually by changing to Dublin, Ohio based Ohio Insurance Services from its current provider, United Health Care. Slater said the Ohio Insurance Services policy includes no deductible and a $15 co-pay. All full-time township employees and elected officials are covered under the policy.
Trustee Jack Justice said he felt bad to end the township’s long relationship with Columbus’ Cor- Ben Consultants Group Health Insurance Agency – which acts as a "go-between" for the township and United Health – but the township can’t ignore an opportunity to save $38,000 per year for basically the same service.
• Slater said Harbor Hills residents requested mosquito spraying service from Union Township. Township Clerk Amanda Griffith said Harbor Hills residents are likely asking because Licking County Health Department’s mosquito spraying service is at capacity and can’t accept any new areas. Slater said the township must be careful it doesn’t overextend its services in the same manner.
Justice said the township could try to fit Harbor Hills in with the Buckeye Lake spraying schedule. Slater said it’s important for the Union Township trustees to discuss the matter with the Licking Township Trustees since Harbor Hills is in Licking Township. "We don’t want to step on any toes," said Slater.
Justice said the township, if it were to spray for mosquitoes, would probably have to charge Harbor Hills for labor and materials, although, obviously, Union Township cannot make a profit from the service. Trustees will discuss the matter with Licking County and Licking Township representatives, and go from there.
• Slater said the township will be accepting bids for resurfacing the township portions of Deeds and Hayes road in the northern part of the township. He anticipates the work will cost roughly $123,000. If it’s any more than that, said Slater, the trustees will prioritize whichever road needs the most work.