No confidence in Washington Co. supervisors

Posted 11/22/22

To the Editor, Washington County Board of Supervisors and ALL citizens of Washington County,

This is a letter of NO CONFIDENCE in the current Board of Supervisors.

The Washington County Board …

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No confidence in Washington Co. supervisors


To the Editor, Washington County Board of Supervisors and ALL citizens of Washington County,

This is a letter of NO CONFIDENCE in the current Board of Supervisors.

The Washington County Board of Supervisors are destroying the Washington County Ambulance Service, which should be a concern of ALL citizens who might need quality care in an emergency.  The minutes of the Board of Supervisors in “The Union” written by Kalen McCain and “The News” written by Mary Zielinski, and on KCII Radio indicate the micro-managing of the Ambulance Department and waste of money to Washington Co. taxpayers in handling personnel matters. The board unanimously and ILLEGALLY voted to place the ambulance director on “unpaid administrative leave.”  The board had to rescind the unpaid leave after hiring counsel outside the county found they had acted illegally.  We have a PAID county attorney.  Why is the board wasting tax payer money to hire another attorney?  The county also pays a Human Resources employee, but has found it necessary to hire other Human Resource personnel from ISAC for investigations.  In addition to one Human Resource consultant outside the county, it is on the agenda to consider still ANOTHER HR service, INCS, at a cost of $950 PER MONTH!   WHY are they wasting MORE taxpayer money?

The board appointed the administrative assistant to oversee the ambulance service while the director is on paid administrative leave.  Due to lack of respect by the board, the assistant administrator RESIGNED.  The department is now short-handed requiring the remaining personnel to put in mandatory overtime to fill the schedule.  This results in more overtime pay, an added expense to the budget. There had been NO mandatory overtime pay prior to putting the director on leave. MORE waste caused by the Board of Supervisors.  Supervisor Marcus Fedler acknowledged the micro-managing of the entire Board of Supervisors in the discussion of increasing the pay for ONE employee. 

Washington County Supervisors say they’ve heard negative feedback about the ambulance department’s Basic Life Support truck, specifically concerning a transport of a patient from the University of Iowa to Omaha, Nebraska.  How does a county citizen even know about transports or where they are transported?  Were the complaints from disgruntled employees to the board or did they again go against the chain of command set forth in the handbook by not taking their complaint to the ambulance director/administrative assistant? 

The Washington Co. Ambulance was contacted BY the University because insurance would not pay for air transport and ALS transport is often difficult to find.  The patient had no other options. At no time was the county 911 staff compromised. The staff who transported the patient were NOT REQUIRED to go yet wanted to help the patient get the medical attention he deserved. The department profit for that single transfer was $2,470.98.  Additional units remained available for all calls during that nine-hour period.

The Transfer Truck has generated a NET income of $130,000 in eight months and has roughly saved $6 for EVERY man, woman and child in Washington County.  So, what is the concern?  Bob Yoder wondered if the Transfer Truck was “running competition to private business”.  When any other business comes to Washington Co., do they take a poll to see if they are competing or interfering with other businesses???? NO!!!! The Transfer Truck helps to create income for the short fall in the budget of the ambulance service.  Why would the Supervisors even spend time questioning the service?  What was the negative feedback???

In a letter of no confidence to the board, read by Mike Freel, (part-time employee and brother-in-law of Supervisor Bob Yoder, conflict of interest?) he stated that the morale of the employees was low.  The Board of Supervisors voted to give ONE paramedic a nearly $3.00 increase in salary to discourage him from going from full-time to part time.  How does that improve morale among the other employees?  Every other county employee should be at the next meeting requesting increased pay.

When the director of the ambulance service first began his duties, he put in 840 hours of overtime to compensate for employees who hadn’t yet been hired to fill shifts.  He considered it a matter of life or death and did not want to be responsible for individuals who might need critical care by NOT sending an ambulance due to lack of staff. The director worked many shifts to provide quality service for the ambulance.  At a Board of Supervisors’ meeting, Supervisors said they could NOT pay him overtime because if they did that for one director, they would have to do the same for all other department heads.  Where was that reasoning when they voted to give ONE ambulance employee a raise of nearly $3.00, but not ALL ambulance or ALL county employees another $3.00 raise????

At the close of a BOS meeting, when taking input from people who had used ZOOM, Supervisor Richard Young told those on ZOOM that he had sold the buildings and assets, but he still retained the Washington County Ambulance Inc name.   Therefore, he could purchase an ambulance and start his own service at any time.  THAT is a conflict of interest.  Supervisor Young should recuse himself on ANY and ALL decisions concerning the present Washington County Ambulance Service. 

In closed session, the name of the employee who complained about her demotion has never been disclosed.  WHY???  The Board of Supervisors was given the original copy of a letter stating reasons for her demotion that was signed by the employee and the director, written by the administrative assistant.  The person who wrote the letter (the administrative assistant) was NEVER questioned during the investigation.  WHY? Only the director was questioned.  The letter given to the board by the employee had been falsified by changing normal text to bold text and omitting her signature.  It is a felony to falsify documents used in a formal investigation.  Is the board looking into this????

It’s time to hold the Board of Supervisors accountable for their waste of taxpayer money and inexcusable actions concerning the Washington County Ambulance Service.  The Supervisors claim they have been made aware of personnel and management issues.  It is due to their micro-managing every decision that has put the ambulance service in turmoil.  The board needs to hear from others who are supportive of the ambulance administration before the Washington County Ambulance Service becomes nonexistent and Supervisor Richard Young fulfills his threat.


Dana Peck, Joyce Smith, Nick Smith, Michelle Shalla, Art Peck, Katie Detweiler, Merle Bontrager, Fern Bontrager, Joshua Kelley, Dan Flynn, Judy Sieren,  Jessica Yoder, Carston Yoder, Karen Sypherd, Rebecca Bush, Chris Swart, Tammy Swart, Amber Swart, Brian Peck, Cathy Conway, Bob Goodrich, Heath West, Angela West, Anthony Martin, Shannon Wander, Kurt Rosbacka, Robert Kanagy, Jesse Gingerich and George Schultz