Editorial: When time matters most
In February 2009, Rowan County commissioners looked at a long list of building and technology needs and put a "2" beside the ones that would have to wait. That included an ambulance station for western Rowan County.
Acquiring and funding a building, ambulances and more than a dozen new positions was out of the question in those extremely tight times. The jail annex was at the top of the list, the people in western Rowan would have to wait a little longer for their own EMS station.
And "wait" was the pivotal word; people in the rural area face longer response times than the rest of the county.
Thankfully, that wait appears to be nearing an end, now that the jail is done and the budget picture has improved. Commissioners took the first step Monday, approving a modular structure on the Cleveland Fire Department's property.
Even this has a sizable price tag. A budget for the first six months is more than half a million dollars. But all of Rowan County should rally around this facility and press for full services - even a handicap-accessible building, one of the corners that might be cut. The people of western Rowan deserve the same level of life-saving service as the rest of the county.