WTSB News has learned that Selma EMS, one of only three remaining independent EMS agencies in Johnston County, is expected to be taken over by Johnston County EMS this summer.
Selma, Four Oaks and 50-210 EMS all have working agreements in place with Johnston County to provide EMS services to residents in their districts through 2018.
WTSB News has learned Johnston County officials have been in talks recently about taking over Selma EMS and that could happen later this year.
“Over the years we’ve talked about the fact that the EMS system will eventually be under the county umbrella,” Johnston County Manager Rick Hester told WTSB News. “We’ve always had general discussions it would be under the county.”
Hester said the takeover has not been about any one particular incident. “We have respect for Selma EMS, the Board of Directors, and staff. They’ve provided a great service for a long time.”
However, Hester’s comments come just two weeks after a WTSB News exclusive story of a January 1, 2017 incident involving Selma EMS and a Johnston County EMS paramedic who responded to a shooting call on Elizabeth Street. A man who was shot during an attempted break-in, was declared dead, only to start moving minutes later. He was rushed to the hospital where he underwent emergency surgery and survived.
Hester said talks about the county taking over Selma EMS began well before the incident. “There is no one issue. They are not in financial stress.”
The county manager anticipates the transition will take place over the summer.
Selma EMS has their Main Station in Downtown Selma but also provides one ambulance which is staffed during the daytime hours in Pine Level.
Hester said current Selma EMS employees would be eligible to apply for a position with the county.
Selma EMS referred all comments about the matter to their attorney who declined comment.
Hester said there have been no discussions with 50-210 and Four Oaks EMS about their working agreements which are in place through next year.