Letter to the Editor: Support Riverside EMS Levy


Riverside Fire Authority is running an Emergency Medical Services levy renewal on Feb. 9, and I encourage your voting in favor of this request.

I have had an optometric practice in Centralia for 40 years now and have utilized the fire district’s EMS teams multiple times with very successful results. I was most impressed with their speed of response and the manner in which they interplayed with American Medical Response units to quickly determine who needed timely life support actions or required transport to Providence Centralia Hospital, leaving the other unit available for service.

I became the newest member of the RFA Board of Commissioners a year ago and have witnessed the high level of fiscal responsibility that the administration has used over the last year to provide 3,081 EMS calls with a seven-minute response time to a 184 square-mile service area containing over 24,000 residents.

This levy is a six-year replacement for one approved in 2015 that is now expiring. It continues the funding for EMS personnel, their vehicles with maintenance costs, their medical equipment, ongoing training and dispatch fees. This is not a new tax but rather a continuation of funding for emergency medical services that I have seen firsthand aid local residents in periods of medical crisis when prompt professional actions were crucial.

As a healthcare provider, I appreciate the quality of EMS professionalism RFA personnel provide, and as a commissioner, I am impressed with the manner in which their funding is managed. As a voter, I am not only supporting this levy but will make sure to return my ballot to pass it. I urge you to do the same.


Dr. Joseph Dolezal

Commissioner, Riverside Fire Authority