2023-07-13 Minutes

Board of Trustees                                July 13, 2023 
West Blount Fire & EMS District 
The Board of Trustees for West Blount Fire and Emergency Medical Services District met at Fire Station No. 1 on July 13, 2023, the meeting was opened at 6:15 PM by Marty Stover, Chair, with prayer by Danny Smith.  All five trustees were present, plus JJ Ivey, Fire Chief, Melissa Thomas, Treasurer, and Stacy Quinn and Christie Moore, Billing Managers, and Whitney Eiland, attorney.  One guest signed the attendance sheet.         

The minutes of the June 8, 2023 meeting were accepted on motion by Jamie Huffstutler, seconded by Mark Giddy.  

Financial report – The operating balance for June 2023 was $461,153.08.  Total income was $36,455.27, with dues of $25,127.89.  Total expenses were $55,935.59 with payroll of $29,144.87, and repair and maintenance of $7,821.74.      
     The financial report was accepted on motion by Mark Giddy, seconded by Jamie Huffstutler.      

Chief’s Report

Total calls for June were 153, including 7 out-of-area (3 – Mt. High/Ricetown; 1 – Bangor;  1 – Nectar; 1 – Locust Fort; 1 – Dallas/Selfville;  1 – Nectar/Cleveland): 94 medical, 3 structure fire, 9 auto accident, 11 fire alarm, 0 vehicle fire, 13 public service, 1 wild fire, 5 fire other, 10 tree down.  Breakdown by station = Sta. 1 Hayden, 64; Sta. 2 Smoke Rise, 67; Sta. 3 Sugar Creek, 11; Sta. 4, Nyota, 4.

The following was also reported:
    Renovation has started at Sta. 2
    Dylan Chappell, a volunteer who has been with us for about 4 months, used our new extrication tool
    Upgrades on the service truck from Holly Springs will begin in the fall
    SCBA compressor is down because of transformer hit by lightning and the sensor is not working   

The Chief’s report was accepted on motion by Danny Smith, seconded by Mark Giddy.

Old Business

Billing Update – The attorneys at the end of June had a total of 339 accounts, two were paid in full, and 113 2022 past due accounts were added making a total of $186,358.49 for collection.  There was a check received from MSN (Massey, Stotser, & Nicholas) in the amount of $2,022.99 for June collections with totals of $13,127.97 collected in 2023, and $185,137.08 since first turned over to MSN.   Four new accounts were added in June.  There are currently 135 accounts on a payment plan.  There were no exemptions in June, leaving total exemptions for this year at 97 approved, representing dues of $14,550, and 7 denied.  Applications for exemptions are closed as of April 13, 2023 until January 1, 2024 for the new fiscal year.  Fire dues received in June was $9,303.39 in checks or cash, $15,017 50 Credit/Debit card, plus $215 assessment fees, and other income of $2,620.59 from Blount County Health Care.  Total collected for June was $27,756.61 [income from 2022 was $24,689.93] and total income for 2023 is $475,938.25.  There are 776 accounts in the system with a balance totaling $347,934 (roughly 60% with liens) as of June 30, 2023, which includes all outstanding dues from the beginning.  So far this year there is 79% participation of dues payment.  As of the end of June 
West Blount Fire Board – July 13, 2023                            Page 2

there were 2,812 accounts paid in full, 763 with a balance and 3,575 billed as of the end of June.
     FDARS balance has been out-of-balance for several years.  Mr. Funderberg, unfortunately is not returning phone calls, the last conversation being April 19.  The managers are looking for a new system, checking with other fire departments.  

Third Party Billing – Due to getting a late start in the month of May, the first full month of Cost Recovery yielded exceptional results.  After submission from WBFD, Fire Recovery USA typically bills insurance companies within 24 hours if submitted Monday through Thursday.  Insurance companies (particularly Allstate) fight the claim for reduced invoicing and settle for less than invoice. 
   Our department received our first check (for the month of June) in the amount of $1,099.80, which included recovery from two incidents totaling $549.90 each. 
   Currently, there are four active runs in the billing system totaling $1,685.88 (after 22% fee).\
   Thus far, we are at a 100% pay rate with insurance companies and no claims have been denied. 

Blount Springs – Blount Springs water is working with Blount County Water Authority to increase water volume.  The water meter is too small, three inch, and will be changed, paid for by Mr. Tullis.
Fourth of July – A thank you card was signed by the board and will be sent to Mayfield for the ice cream that the Fire Department gave away during the celebration. 

New Business

Purchase of Service Vehicle – Through email notification to all board members because of time constraints a vote was taken to purchase the vehicle from Holly Springs.   For the record, a motion was made by Mark Giddy, seconded by Jamie Huffstutler, for the purchase of this vehicle.  Motion passed.  

Christmas Dinner – The end-of-year recognition and Christmas dinner will be on Friday, December 1, 2023.

Christmas Parade – The Christmas Parade will be Tuesday, December 5, 2023  

Web Page – Our Billing Managers are currently working on setting up a web page for our department.  Progress will be reported next month.    

Announcements – A report was made on Billy Giddy, who is now home after a long battle in the hospital.  It was also announced that Jerry Cox, husband of Annette Cox had passed away.  Both Billy and Annette are former board members.  They will both be invited to the Annual End-of-Year Dinner. 

The next Board meeting will be Thursday, August 10, 2023, 6:00 PM at Fire Station No. 1.

The meeting was adjourned at 7:15 PM on motion by Danny Smith.

West Blount Fire Board – July 13, 2023                                Page 3


Present            Not Present                 Guests                 
Dolores Fort                                Thomas Henderson     
Mark Giddy                            
Jamie Huffstutler
Danny Smith                                
Marty Stover                
JJ Ivey
Melissa Thomas                    
Stacy Quinn
Christie Moore    
Whitney Eiland 

                        Dolores Fort