Fitch & Associates Review Kennett Square’s Fire & EMS Expenditures: Aiming for Fairness & Efficiency in Response to Increased Costs

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KENNETT SQUARE, PA — A special meeting of Kennett Square Borough Council will be held on Thursday, May 25th at 7:00 pm in Kennett Square Borough Hall (600 S. Broad Street). The aim of the meeting is to discuss the Borough’s needs and interests surrounding its Fire and Emergency Medical Services (EMS). As one of the regions served by the Kennett Fire and Emergency Services Regional Commission, the Borough – in alliance with five other municipalities – created the Commission in 2017 to provide funding for the local fire companies and reduce expenses.

The Kennett Square Borough Council recently released a statement affirming its commitment to delivering high-quality emergency services. They strongly support local first responders and have demonstrated this by contributing both financially and in assisting fundraising events, as well as sharing the costs of procuring new equipment. Their unwavering support for local first responders is commendable and ensures the community’s safety and well-being.

Nevertheless, while Kennett Square has demonstrated clear support for local first responders, the Borough’s financial contribution to the Commission has increased substantially over the past few years. In 2018, the Borough’s donation stood at $254,630, but this figure has since surged by 80%, currently reaching $457,957 (for 2023). Projections indicate that this cost will continue to grow exponentially in the coming years, potentially leading to further tax increases. The Kennett Square Borough Council aims to gain greater insight into this matter and better balance the benefits and costs of additional spending.

Recently, Kennett Square entered into an agreement with Fitch & Associates, a consultant in the realm of Fire/EMS, to scrutinize the Borough’s Fire and EMS expenditures. The objective of this impartial inquiry is twofold: to assess the overall efficiency of the department and to establish an appropriate cost structure determined by various metrics such as the size of the municipality, call volume, response times, and more.

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How does this assist the Borough, you may ask? Well, it promises fair allocation of resources, fosters a sustainable strategic plan and ensures the provision of the most efficient service to residents. All of which align with the Borough’s objective of delivering high-quality emergency service at an acceptable cost.

The findings of Fitch’s comprehensive evaluation will be presented to the public on May 25th. If any resident would like to make their voice heard, they will have the opportunity to do so. Following the special meeting, the Borough Council will review both the report and public commentary, ultimately deciding how to proceed.

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