By Orange County Supervisor Shawn Nelson
Late last week the process by which the Orange County Fire Authority awards contracts for ambulance services came into question. Emails from a Fire Authority official were revealed to members of the Board of Supervisors that contained language that appeared to give an advantage to incumbent providers. In addition the Board of Supervisors became aware that two separate pre-proposal meetings were held by Fire Authority officials regarding the ambulance proposal process. The separate meetings segregated current ambulance providers from others who do not currently have contracts.
During board comments at past Tuesday’s board meeting Supervisor Spitzer raised the issue of the legality and appropriateness of the email and ambulance process as a whole. To that end Supervisor Nelson has directed county attorneys to look in to the legality of the way the Fire Authority has conducted ambulance service selection. The Board of Supervisors will examine and determine an appropriate approach to ensure a fair and transparent contracting process.