Archived Story

Our view: Support the consolidation study

Published 6:52pm Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Niles Charter Township Trustees made a mistake when they decided to not support an effort to study the consolidation of fire and ambulance services in the greater Niles-Buchanan.

Many believe such a consolidation would result in a more efficient and cost-effective public safety department.

Even if trustees think it is a bad idea, doesn’t it make sense to do the study and find out for sure?

Studying the plan wouldn’t cost anything — a state grant would pay for that — so there is no risk involved. It just doesn’t make sense for the trustees to unanimously vote to not support the study.
Fortunately, Niles Township’s support wasn’t necessary for the study to get done. The City of Niles, the City of Buchanan and Bertrand Township have all said they would support it. Only two municipalities were needed to back the study, according to Tim Gray, director of Southwestern Michigan Community Ambulance Service and co-author of the consolidation plan.

Will consolidation work? No one knows for sure, but that’s what the study is for. Thank goodness there are some out willing to try something new.

Opinions expressed in this editorial are those of the editorial board consisting of Publisher Michael Caldwell and editors Craig Haupert, Ambrosia Neldon and Scott Novak

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