Great Neck Estates renews Vigilant contract, adopts budget

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Vigilant Fire Company’s newest paramedic response vehicle and ambulance stationed outside the Fire Company (Photo courtesy of Vigilant Fire Company).

Great Neck Estates adopted a $9.43 million budget and renewed its contract with Vigilant Fire Company last Wednesday, marking a victory for Vigilant.

The village’s approval of a new contract with Vigilant Fire Company came amid questions about whether it will remain the primary emergency care provider in the Great Neck area. Discussions are still ongoing with the villages of Great Neck, Saddle Rock and Kings Point, David Weiss, board chairman of the Vigilant Fire Company, said.

“While we continue to work towards a definitive resolution, contracts have yet to be signed,” Weiss said. “In the coming weeks we hope village mayors come to an agreement to have our group of highly trained community members continue responding to emergency calls in our villages for years to come.”

Great Neck Estate’s annual contract with Vigilant Fire Company, which handles fire and ambulance services for the area, is worth about $736,918, of which $638,376 goes toward fire services and the rest for the ambulance, according to the fire company.

“We love them, we are delighted with them, they do a great job, [and] we don’t want to lose them,” said Great Neck Estates Mayor William Warner.

Vigilant Fire Chief Josh Forst said the department values the continued partnership between the village and the company and that they will continue to improve their services.

“We appreciate the support and commitment from Great Neck Estates,” Forst said. “We’re extremely proud of our response time and thank them for the support of everything we do.”

The overall village budget is about $164,000, or 1.7 percent, less than the previous year. This year’s budget features spending increases in public safety, culture and recreation, home and community, and employee benefits. Transportation costs also inched up about $6,000.

Reduced debt service payments offset these increases. The payments were more than halved from $959,593 last year to $472,464 this year. Total government support also fell about $17,000.

Most of the government’s revenue came from property taxes, which amount to $7,673,326, about $43,000 higher than last year. Overall, revenue from other sources dropped nearly $100,000.

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