published Sunday, October 30th, 2011

Ambulance service set for Marion County

By Ryan Lewis/Correspondent

JASPER, Tenn. -- After months of sending out requests for proposals, the Marion County Commission is nearly ready to hire a new ambulance service.

County Mayor John Graham said the commission's Ambulance Committee recently interviewed three prospective companies for the job.

Puckett EMS in Austell, Ga., was the clear choice, he said.

"There was unanimous approval [by the committee] to make a recommendation to the board that we begin the process of entering into contract negotiations with Puckett EMS," Graham said. "This was obviously, in the committee members' minds, the best option for the county, and I would agree with that."

The board unanimously approved the committee's recommendation.

Puckett EMS launched a new operations division in Chattanooga last year, officials said, and the company is now a service partner with Erlanger Health System.

Officials said a new chairman for the Ambulance Committee will be chosen soon. Graham, County Attorney Billy Gouger and that person will negotiate the contract with Puckett EMS and bring it back to the Ambulance Committee for consideration, they said.

Ryan Lewis is based in Marion County. Contact him at ryanlewis34@gmail.com.

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