Sturgis group raises more than $8,000 to help save ambulance service

STURGIS, S.D. (KBHB) – The Sturgis City Council got their first update from a group working to raise money for rural residents to save city-owned ambulance service.

Sturgis City Manager Daniel Ainslie says the group announced they had raised more than $8,000 so far, not including some campgrounds that had yet to report.

Ainslie says the group also reports they plan to begin another phase of their fundraising operation.

In July, the council voted to extend the deadline to shut off city owned ambulance service to the rural areas to Dec. 31. That came after emotional testimony from those who promised to make a good faith effort to help pay for the service.

The city was proposing redrawing their response district because those areas currently served by the ambulance service are outside city limits and don’t pay the fee city residents do. That fee is included in residents’ property taxes.

The city asked the group to try and raise $30,000 by Nov. 18. That is half of what the city says it loses in a year by serving those areas.