North Judson Officials Discuss Fire Service Contracts

The North Judson Town Council was presented with fire service contracts from Jackson and Wayne Townships when members met Monday night.

According to Fire Chief Joe Leszek, the contracts were unchanged from previous years. They were approved unanimously by the council.

As reported in the past, Wayne and Jackson Townships have fixed contracts. Wayne Township pays $23,000 and half of the equipment while Jackson Township pays an annual fee of $10,000. Rich Grove Township pays $660 per call.

During Monday night’s meeting, Chief Leszek mentioned that Rich Grove’s current contract won’t be up until next year. He said the Department’s business year ended in November and Rich Grove had a total of 70 calls, resulting in a charge of $46,200.

Chief Leszek explained why North Judson-Wayne Township Fire Department is being called to assist in the area more frequently.

He stated, “It’s a really tough area for Pulaski County EMS to cover. That Denham area, where their ambulances are stationed, it could be anywhere from 15-20 minutes before they get there and they’ve seen by working with us that if there’s a need we can usually get there a lot quicker.”

Chief Leszek noted that Fire Department officials have coordinated with the Rich Grove Township Trustee and Advisory Board members about alternative contract options that are available to help reduce their call charge in the future.

However, he said Township reps chose to stick with the current arrangement with the hopes that the calls may go back down.

Leszek brought up the possibility of utilizing fees raised from Rich Grove Township calls to purchase a vehicle to assist with medical calls, noting that they’re now responding to more than in previous years. He said the Tahoe that’s being used now is functional but has around than 170,000 miles on it.

He said an entirely new vehicle would not be purchased but they’d potentially be looking at options in the $12,000 to $16,000 range. Leszek stressed that this was just a possible idea that’s being considered and that no official decisions have been made.