CGR developed a comprehensive report on the existing conditions of the EMS, fire, communications and hospital emergency departments in Ontario County. The project involved reviewing the operations of 28 fire agencies and ten EMS transport organizations that served the county. The number and types of fire protection and EMS agencies serving Ontario County are diverse, including large and small volunteer-run agencies; combination and career agencies with paid staff; fire department-affiliated ambulance services; and independent EMS agencies (including both nonprofit and commercial operations). These agencies do not function as part of comprehensive countywide systems. As in many counties in New York, they function independently, making their own financial, personnel and operational decisions under a variety of operating models. Common challenges that were identified include declining volunteers, highly competitive for skilled workers, need to develop future leaders, increasing administrative burdens, and growing reliance on mutual aid. CGR identified a series of actions for the community to undertake in the near term including fostering career and volunteer opportunities in public safety, creating performance expectations, developing a public safety report for county government, and expanding the use of global positioning technology. CGR also identified several longer term actions including planning for the further loss of volunteers and encouraging consolidation of agencies.
Report Date: Jan 2023
Author(s): Paul Bishop , David Riley , Katherine Bell
Subject(s): Public Safety , Shared Services/Consolidation , Government Reorganization/Dissolution
Location: Ontario, New York