June 3, 2015

Task force presents recommendations to improve morale for ambulance service

By Daniel Arens

A task force of three ambulance board members presented their recommendations on how morale could be improved at the Mercer County ambulance service.
The three board members are relatively new to the ambulance service, and were sent out to speak with other board members, management, and staff about strained relations between the different levels within the service. Relations between manager Angie Sayler and the ambulance board are tense, especially related to financial questions in the budget and management style.
The task force determined that finances, safety issues, and general morale are the chief areas of concern, and that these issues are both current and historical with the department. They then broached five specific recommendations to improve these issues.
The first recommendation was to house a new bookkeeper at Beulah. The board members hoped that this will help allow for management in both Hazen and Beulah and a shared responsibility in dealing with issues that arise in either specific location.
The second recommendation was for Sayler to provide a monthly financial report to the board. They suggested holding monthly meetings between management and the board specifically related to financial concerns.
The third recommendation was for an improvement plan to be developed by a committee. This committee would be comprised of members from the board, management, and staff.
The fourth recommendation was for an organizational chart that will create new positions between the three levels of the service. These positions will function as mediators between the board, management, and staff.
The final recommendation of the task force was to openly discuss collaboration with the Killdeer ambulance service. Problems have risen with the Killdeer service after former Mercer County ambulance employees left for Killdeer instead.

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