Letters to the editor

Nov. 01, 2013 @ 04:19 PM

EMS charges appropriate

Regarding Friday’s Letter to the Editor from Danny Johnson (ambulance charges):

Durham County’s ambulance transportation rates are set each year by the Board of County Commissioners, as part of the annual budget development process. 

They do not cover the full cost of ambulance service delivery. These approved fees cover approximately 68 percent of the cost of our EMS system.  As in much of the healthcare payment world, what is charged and what is actually paid rarely bear any relationship to each other.  Most of the cost involves having the EMS system available, ready to respond when called – not the actual cost of any particular call.  An additional cost results from providing service to those in our community who require emergency medical care, but who are uninsured and unable to pay.  Our charges are consistent with those charged by surrounding counties and prevailing practices in the region.

The services provided to Mr. Johnson were reviewed and were appropriate for his medical condition.   County EMS staff will work with Mr. Johnston to get his bill paid by any or all of his eligible insurance providers.  The billing specialist did advise Mr. Johnson to keep careful track of his discussions with the Veterans Administration.

Skip Kirkwood

Director/Chief Paramedic

Durham County Emergency Medical Services

Beasley: Vote for diversity

Early voting is almost over and there is one issue that is evident to me.  There is a lack of engagement with our average-age (32) voter in Durham.  

The fact that there is no representation of that generation, or even the previous one for that, on any of our elected boards plays a major role in that lack of engagement. Also, there is not a Latino or an individual under the age of 50 on City Council, County Commissioners or the Durham School Board.

My opponent, Eddie Davis was a long-time educator here in Durham.  His entire career was centered on education. However, City Council has absolutely nothing to do with our educational system.   Eddie Davis would best serve this community on the school board.  

With Cary’s recent rating as the safest city in the country, crime is issue number-one here in Durham.  I believe Durham can be equally as safe as Cary with the right leadership.  My career as a bail bondsman has spanned for over 20 years.  I know firsthand how the criminal justice system and law enforcement operate here in Durham.  I have relationships with judges, district attorneys, defense attorneys, courtroom clerks, law enforcement (city and county), the alleged and their families.  It’s that expertise that will allow me to help implement strategic solutions to immediately help reduce the crime rate in the Bull City.

I am asking for you all to vote for true diversity and for the future of Durham. 

Omar S. Beasley


Realtors’ spending

I'm shocked, shocked at how little the Realtors think they can spend to buy Durham's elections.  Their lobbyist probably drives a car that costs more!  

Please vote for Don Moffitt and Eddie Davis, who will represent their wards, not out-of-town interests.

Patricia Carstensen