South Jacksonville initiates five-mile radius acceptance for volunteer fire/rescue department

By Benjamin Cox on May 3, 2019 at 9:49am

The South Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Chief is offering thoughts on changes to the village department.

Two major changes to the village’s volunteer fire and rescue department occurred yesterday evening during the South Jacksonville Board of Trustees meeting.

The village board voted yesterday to raise rates for certain services offered by South Jacksonville Ambulance and also to implement a 5-mile radius in regards to volunteer residency requirements.

Previously, anyone who wanted to be considered as a volunteer for the South Jacksonville fire department was required to live within the village boundary limit.

South Jacksonville fire and rescue chief Richard Evans Jr. details how the radius works

“The new residency requirement that was passed by the board will allow a 5-mile radius for volunteers centralized at the South Jacksonville Emergency Complex on Sequoia. I believe it will be beneficial for our department. This opens up the door for a larger population to serve the residents in west central Illinois which we as South Jacksonville volunteer firefighters are designated to protect. I know there are quality individuals out there in this new residency capacity for the South Jacksonville department, and I look forward to exploring additional personnel potential.”

Chief Evans also says the ambulance rate increase puts the village at a similar level with LifeStar Ambulance’s current service rates.

“In the beginning of the year, I reviewed our ambulance rates and decided that setting a number of our rates in accordance with what LifeStar Ambulance is an appropriate motion to make, and the board agreed. We offer the same service, so these rates should be equal.”

Both the five-mile radius and the new ambulance rates were implemented with unanimous votes.