Friday, March 25, 2016

EMS News: City of South Lake Tahoe Terminates Ambulance Service Contract #CAEMS

City of South Lake Tahoe Terminates Ambulance Service Contract; El Dorado County Officials Request Immediate Meeting

March 24, 2016

 Placerville, CA —El Dorado County was made aware of a March 15, 2016 action taken by the City of South Lake Tahoe City Council to unilaterally terminate its contract with the California Tahoe Emergency Services Operations Authority (Cal Tahoe) to provide prehospital advanced life support ambulance services in the South Lake Tahoe region. The City’s action is slated to take effect April 15, 2016. Cal Tahoe, a joint powers authority comprised of the City of South Lake Tahoe (City) and Lake Valley Fire Protection District (Fire District), has a contract with the County to provide ambulance service in the South Lake Tahoe area and parts of northwestern Alpine County. Cal Tahoe JPA subcontracts with its member agencies, the Fire District and City for ambulance service.

El Dorado County officials have initiated discussion with the Cal Tahoe JPA to jointly consider the consequences of this action. The County is expressly concerned about the threat to public health and safety of residents and visitors to the South Lake Tahoe region should the City of South Lake Tahoe terminate its ambulance service contract, with the Cal Tahoe JPA, without making adequate provisions to ensure that its action will not put ambulance service in the South Lake Tahoe region at risk.

Due to the nature of the action by the City of South Lake Tahoe and its repercussions to public health and safety, El Dorado County will be submitting a letter to the City requesting an immediate meeting.

The following is a brief history of ambulance services in the South Lake Tahoe region. In 2001, El Dorado County released a competitive bid process to identify an ambulance services contractor. As a result of this process, Cal Tahoe JPA was awarded the contract. Cal Tahoe JPA subcontracted with its member agencies, City, Fire District and North Tahoe Fire Protection District, to provide ambulance services. Subsequently in 2011, another competitive bid process was conducted for ambulance services. Cal Tahoe was again the successful bidder. Cal Tahoe subcontracted with the City and Fire District to provide ambulance services in the City and the unincorporated areas of El Dorado County in the Lake Tahoe Basin, effective September 1, 2011. In 2015, the Cal Tahoe JPA requested and was granted a performance based contract extension through 2019.

Image Credit: California Tahoe Emergency Operations Authority

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