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  • Last modified 131 days ago (July 20, 2022)

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Targeted EMS chief resigns

Staff writer

The county is in need of a new emergency medical service director after the resignation Friday of department head Travis Parmley.

Parmley’s resignation was effective immediately. Paramedic Chuck Kenney was appointed interim director. Parmley will remain with the department during a 30-day transition period.

Kenney was a shift supervisor before he temporarily was promoted.

Parmley’s resignation comes after weeks of criticism over transfers of patients from local hospitals to larger hospitals able to provide care for those whose conditions could not be treated here.

At the bottom the criticism is a department policy that local hospitals must make other arrangements for patients who need to be taken farther than 60 miles from the county line. The county, with two full-time ambulances, will not take patients farther. When ambulances are outside the county, only part-time ambulance attendants may be available for emergency calls in the county.

“At this time right now I’d just like to say we have nothing but praise for our ambulance department,” commission vice chairman Randy Dallke said.

Commissioners went into a 15-minute executive session with Parmley before they came back into open session, announced no action, and took a five minute recess.

Kenney entered the meeting during the recess, and a longer executive session, including Kenney, was conducted.

“Travis Parmley has tendered a resignation effective immediately,” Dallke said when open meeting resumed. “We met with Chuck and offered an interim director position to him.”

The EMS transfer policy would be reviewed for possible adjustments, Dallke said.

“This is a short-term decision we may have to make,” Dallke said.

After the meeting, Dallke said the county had lost a good ambulance director.

Commissioner Dave Crofoot echoed that thought.

“For all of his term with us, we’ve heard great comments,” Dallke said. “He set some policies and we were good with those policies, and apparently in the last 30 days, that hasn’t been good enough for some people.”

This is not the first time a good leader for Marion County has resigned, Dallke said.

Crofoot said the county would work through what it needs to work through and seek another good ambulance director.

At commissioners’ regular meeting Monday, pay for Kenney and office administrator Jamie Shirley were increased. Parmley’s salary was reduced 20% for the transition.

Kenny will be paid $18.10 an hour plus overtime, Shirley will temporarily be paid $4,132 a month during the 30-day transition, and Parmley’s salary will go from $5,881 a month to $4,705 a month.

Commission chairman David Mueller said Kenney would meet with chief executives of St. Luke and Hillsboro Community Hospitals to discuss options to resolve issues that provoked strong criticism of Parmley.

Last modified July 20, 2022

 

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