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System To Monitor Financial Accountability Of Community Fire And EMS Companies Being Created

November 4th, 2013 by WCBC Radio

Following financial breakdowns at two local volunteer fire departments recently- an effort is underway to create a system to monitor the financial accountability of community fire and emergency medical services companies. The goal is to protect those services by bolstering public confidence that donated monies are being used for fire and rescue operations. The Allegany County Commissioners endorsed a plan to have a study of financial accountability in the volunteer departments conducted, which will provide recommendations to guard against bad practices.  Both the Baltimore Pike and McCoole volunteer fire departments ran into serious financial troubles over the past two years. At the Baltimore Pike department, embezzlement by two then-members of the department caused financial problems for that organization.  The McCoole department was set up as an independent corporation and ended up more than $1 million in debt and the station in foreclosure. The cause of the department’s collapse remains under investigation by authorities. The McCoole department was shut down by the county Department of Emergency Services in April.  Clarence Broadwater, the current vice president and former president of the Allegany-Garrett County Fire & Rescue Association, says it is vitally important for the public to know any money they donate is actually being used for fire and rescue efforts…


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