New EMS Plan Ends with Highland County Rescue Squad Shuttered

That’s Board of Supervisor Chairman Henry Budzinski opening the public hearings on Thursday, April 11. Decisions on both hearings, which centered around raising fees for both enterprise (trash) services and EMS,  were eventually tabled. But that wasn’t the end of everyone’s time in the Highland County Courtroom. 

Emotions ran high as a plan for EMS services was placed on the agenda at the last minute, causing many to question protocol. Supervisor Harry Sponaugle used his board comment time to give a recap of the long-standing situation as he’s been on the board the longest. 

After the motion, things get a little out of order, you’ll hear Budzinski asking for a second, Supervisor Paul Trible telling others to cast their votes, the public getting riled up, and County Attorney Melissa Dowd interjecting.

The board then voted down the comprehensive plan that had been discussed in previous meetings and opened the floor up to public comment. These comments have been collected and will be presented in part two of this story. 

After comments, the board read in the resolution for Emergency Medical Services and added a few minor changes then gave a final vote.

Sponaugle and Budzinski voted yes, Trible voted no.

The crowd gathered in the courthouse erupted in shouts and immediately called for the resignation of both Sponaugle and Budzinski via a petition.

Listen for part two of this story, or view both parts online at 

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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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