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Knox County looks at new local income tax to subsidize ambulance service

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KNOX COUNTY, Ind. (WTHI) - Knox County EMS handles all ambulance services in the county. But like many ambulance services in the country, it is struggling to keep up during the pandemic.

Knox County commissioner Kellie Streeter explains, "We need to make sure there is an ambulance service to provide emergency medical services to everybody in our county as well as to our hospital."

Knox County EMS recently told commissioners that the ambulance service was reaching a breaking point. Now the county and city are looking at plans to subsidize Knox County EMS.

Streeter says, "On a fifty thousand dollar wage earner at a point four percent we're looking at roughly eight to ten dollars a month."

County commissioners and council are working up the plans first. Then they will get the plan to the city of Vincennes.

Mayor Joe Yochum says, "If we have to subsidize the ambulance and this is how we've got to pay for it this is what we've got to do. There's instances lately that we've waited fifty minutes on an ambulance."

The local income tax would be split between the city and county. It would subsidize the ambulance service. If passed it could also be used to help other public safety organizations throughout the city and county.

Yochum says, "It's very important that we get something figured out and solved through all of this."

Streeter says, "The people have to be safe and we're going to get it done one way or another."

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