You’re probably aware that a special commission to review emergency medical services was recently appointed by Mayor Graham Richard. The Mayor and City Council members are concerned that the costs of providing EMS services to Fort Wayne’s citizens have recently escalated. Costs per EMS run were up 17% between 2001 and 2002. Those who are transported via ambulance by our EMS service pay essentially all the costs—i.e. no significant tax funds are used to support our emergency system. The quality of EMS service being provided is generally perceived to be very good but deserves further review as does the role of Fort Wayne’s firefighters in providing emergency services (a “hidden” cost). Perhaps the firefighters’ role should be expanded. Give me a call or email me if you have any thoughts regarding the quality and cost of emergency services in Fort Wayne.

Another local governmental organization currently undergoing scrutiny is the Metropolitan Human Relations Commission. City Councilman John Crawford has introduced legislation that would alter the manner in which “Metro” resolves cases of alleged discrimination in Fort Wayne. He states he’s discussed the matter with businesspeople who are concerned about the fairness of the current process. In many discussions regarding Metro I’ve received largely positive feedback regarding that organization. Pass along any thoughts you have regarding this matter.

There hasn’t been much information in the media recently regarding the future of high speed rail service for Fort Wayne. As you are probably aware, the federal agency making long range high speed rail decisions has decided that the most logical route through this area would be through Fort Wayne rather than further north in Indiana. Considering the large turnout at previous public high speed rail meetings I’m well aware that there is considerable local support for this concept. Any future progress will occur over a several year period. If you believe enhanced rail service is a logical step for Fort Wayne let me know but also contact state and federal officials and give them your thoughts.

The rate of recycling in Fort Wayne is better than in many communities but could be improved. If you aren’t recycling on a regular basis give some thought toward putting more of your newspapers, glass, plastic, etc. into those recycling bins. Recycling helps the environment both by reusing the discarded materials but also by keeping debris out of landfills—that reduces the need for landfill space.

Once again, be sure to work with your neighborhood association in planning for the upcoming Fort Wayne neighborhood cleanup on Saturday, May 15th. Afterward there’ll be a citywide party with music, food, and drinks from 11:30am until 2pm at Headwaters’ Park. Contact the Solid Waste Department at 427-1270 for further details. See you there!

P.S.: I’ve just learned that concerned citizens have asked Waynedale area residents and others to sign a petition to the Parks Department in support of further improvements at Waynedale Park. I’ve pushed for several upgrades there but more needs to be done! You can visit Waynedale Park from 12noon to 4pm on Sat.urday, April 17th, to learn more and sign the petition!


Tom Hayhurst
City Councilman
4th District

The Waynedale News Staff

Tom Hayhurst

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