At the City Council meeting earlier this month, representatives from Clifton Park-Halfmoon EMS delivered their transition plan as Mechanicville’s ambulatory services are transferred to the multi-municipal provider from the dissolving John H. Ahearn Rescue Squad.
“We’ve provided services for 60 years,” said Larry Whalen, John H. Ahearn Rescue Squad Board President. “We realized we didn’t have the physical resources to carry-on, so we looked around [for ways to consolidate]. Clifton Park-Halfmoon [EMS] is one of the best organizations around.”
John H. Ahearn is completing the dissolution process by early spring. The local volunteer squad, founded in 1954, has had declining volunteer numbers in recent years. At one time, the squad was self-funded but has been receiving funds from the city of Mechanicville in recent years.
“This is just an evolution of what John Ahearn started in 1954,” said Eric Hanchett, Director of Administration at Clifton Park-Halfmoon EMS.
“We’ll be able to do the community services things that small squads can’t do,” said Mike Seney, Director of Administration at Clifton Park-Halfmoon EMS.
The transition of the NYS Department of Health’s “certificate of need” will take place in the near future. Mechanicville emergency calls will be responded to by a Clifton Park-Halfmoon EMS unit based out of the Halfmoon-Waterford Fire District Station #2 at 750 Hudson River Road for the next few months.
It is expected that by the end of June, Clifton Park-Halfmoon will eventually purchase and retrofit the former Strang Fire Station in Depot Square and station a unit there. All coverage areas under agreement with John H. Ahearn, including Hemstreet Park, will be provided ambulatory services by Clifton Park-Halfmoon EMS going forward.
Additionally, Clifton Park-Halfmoon EMS will expand its Board of Directors to include Larry Whalen as a representative from the consolidating John H. Ahearn Board.