Study says consolidation could work for Lee County employees -, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Study says consolidation could work for Lee County employees


November 13, 2007

Lee County--  A consolidation study is now complete.  Lee County leaders heard the pros and cons of combining fire and emergency services.

The University of Georgia's Carl Vinson Institute presented their findings to commissioners and safety leaders at a special called meeting Tuesday night.

The institute studied how much the consolidation would cost and how effective cross-training fire and EMS workers would be. Overall, the institute says consolidation seems to be the new trend and it could help prevent risk and error in Lee County.

EMS Director Bobby Watkins says there has been some resistance to cross-training from some employees but there's a lot of information to digest.

"I think one of things that employees on both sides have is the uncertainty of how it's going to be structured and how it's going to be run. I think that the more we know, the more we can tell our people and the better they will understand," said Watkins.

Consolidation could also lower the county's insurance rating which would save property owners on their premiums. Commissioners will sit down with safety leaders to discuss the study findings before making any decisions.