Loudoun supervisors in budget straw votes have approved a full-time operational medical director for the Department of Fire, Rescue and Emergency Management.
“Considering that we’ve been hobbling along with a part-time person, who in reality has been providing full-time work to the county for more than a decade, we need the full-time position,” said Supervisor Suzanne M. Volpe (R-Algonkian). “In reality, if we look back on it, he really should have charged for more.”
The department also won funding for a human resources administrative assistant, a payroll assistant, and a quality assurance and quality improvement officer. Combined Fire-Rescue System Chief W. Keith Brower Jr. said the latter position would help the department catch up on quality monitoring.
“In theory, every EMS call should be reviewed for compliance,” he said. “As it stands right now, we are not looking at calls proactively. We are reacting to complaints about service delivery.”
Supervisors also met part of Sheriff Mike Chapman’s request, although they couldn’t stomach the bill for his full request of $2.7 million above what is covered in the equalized tax rate budget, including both new positions and one-time startup expenses. Of Chapman’s $6.7 million total request, $1.3 million appears in County Administrator Tim Hemstreet’s recommended budget, which, as is, includes a tax increase.
Vice Chairman Ralph M. Buona (R-Ashburn) said the sheriff had “outdone” himself with his request.
“You’ve just added a half a penny to the tax rate, by yourself, with your enhancements,” Buona said.
Ultimately, supervisors voted to fund an administrative assistant, a juvenile sex crimes detective, a community resources deputy, and in increase to the business licensing enforcement unit.
Other motions to hire an adult detention center cook and and two additional traffic deputies failed narrowly.