HCVRS is Back in Service and Board Accepts EMS Captain Nick Fialo’s Resignation

During a closed session meeting after the public hearing on May 10, the Highland County Board of Supervisors reconvened to announce the resignation of Captain Nick Fialo from Highland County EMS effective immediately. Supervisor Chair Henry Budzinski said that the supervisors will be hiring a new chief and that the resignation ends that sexual harassment investigation that was announced on May 7.

This is the second resignation from the Highland County EMS staff in as many weeks, with another full time staff member resigning earlier this month. The board did state that the two were not related and that the paid squad remains fully staffed and has backup from Bolar Volunteer Rescue Squad.

Meanwhile, on May 8, the Highland County Volunteer Rescue Squad was granted a consent order stemming from the injunction filed by HCVRS. This order allows HCVRS to resume operation in Highland County while the current litigation proceeds. The order reads, “After the case was called, counsel for the parties advised the court of an agreement in resolution of Plaintiff’s Motion for Preliminary Injunction.” Handwritten at the bottom of the order is an addition stating, “Defendant Board of Supervisors of Highland County, Virginia agrees to the relief granted by this order but does not concede the factual or legal allegations in the complaint or motion.”

The agreement was discussed and voted on at the May 7 meeting. Here’s the audio from that discussion with Budzinski making the motion and Supervisor Paul Trible asking what the purpose is. Ultimately at the vote, Budzinski and Supervisor Harry Sponaugle voted yes and Trible voted present, which passed the motion.

Public budget hearings are still under way, with the next meeting on May 15 at the Highland Modular Conference Center.. According to postings, “a public hearing will be held to receive comments on the Revised proposed Budget for fiscal year 2025 for the County Budget, the

Emergency Medical Services Budget, and the Enterprise Budget. A copy of the County Budget, the Emergency Medical Services Budget, and the Enterprise Budget can be obtained from Jerri Botkin, Interim County Administrator, in the County Administrator’s Office.”

Allegheny Mountain Radio will continue to cover this story. 

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Brit Chambers

Brit Chambers is a resident of Highland County, Virginia and a news reporter for Allegheny Mountain Radio. She loves living in a small town and relishes the outdoor adventures and community feeling that Highland has to offer. Brit has a background in journalism, marketing, and public relations and spends her free time reading good books, baking sourdough bread, and hiking with her family.

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