LANCASTER, Pa. (WHTM) — Ambulance services in the Midstate are hurting due to the financial crisis, and one service in Lancaster County is considering forming a regional EMS Authority, which would require an annual fee.

Right now, Northwest EMS in Elizabethtown is running a subscription model, but less than half of the community is paying in. For the past six years, it has been running at a deficit.

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The expected budget shortfall for 2022 is more than $500,000 and as calls increase so do the costs for equipment, fuel, certifications, training, and wages.

Their plan is to form a regional authority where multiple municipalities would come together to administer and fund EMS services in the region currently served by the northwest. It would cost people in the municipalities around $75 per year per household as well as a fee for businesses.

“You may spend the $75 and think I’m never going to need this service. But God forbid someday you do need that service, you want to know that that ambulance is there and ready to come assist you. You want to make sure that organization is financially stable for the long term,” said West Donegal Township manager John Yoder.

The goal is to have the authority up and running by next year. But, they still have to go through a regulatory process and public hearings.