HAZARD — The Perry County Ambulance Authority board met Monday night amid some controversy.
Lloyd Engle, a retired Perry County postmaster, said he attended the meeting as a concerned citizen hoping to voice his issues, but was unable to.
“Well, I came up here tonight, I’ve got stuff here that shows that the bylaws they made, they’ve not kept the bylaws,” Engle said.
Engle alleges Perry County Judge-Executive Denny Ray Noble, who chairs the ambulance authority board, has not scheduled and held the number of meetings the board is supposed to have held in the last three years. He also claims that minutes from past meetings of the board have been altered, and said he wanted to discuss the assistant director’s salary.
“They’re supposed to meet four times a year, and in the last three years they’ve met four times. Four times in three years ain’t it,” Engle said. “I’ve got the minutes to prove it.”
Engle said he tried to bring the issue up at the last fiscal court meeting, but was told to come to the ambulance authority meeting instead to have his concerns addressed, however he was not allowed to speak because he was not on the agenda. Engle had to be forcibly removed from the meeting when it went into executive session.
“To not let a citizen speak, the reason I got out of order was because I had to do that because he [Noble] wanted me just to be quiet. I probably only would have spoken about 10 minutes. I’ve got my notes here, I’ve got my stuff to back it up,” Engle said.
Noble said that although he cannot keep citizens from attending the meetings, according to the bylaws he does not have to allow a citizen to speak at the meeting. He also admitted that the board has not met on a regular schedule, but their policies are being reviewed.
“Now, I’ll admit that we’ve not been on schedule, so we hired Rookie Medaris to reset all the guidelines policies and procedures,” Noble said. “Sometimes it’s just oversight, you know. We was in the middle of an election, in the middle of black topping like $3-$4 million worth of road, and all this stuff’s going on, and it skipped my mind. I’m not perfect.”
Engle alleges Noble asked a former secretary to change the minutes of the meetings so that they would fit the bylaws.
“Lloyd asked me, in court, when we was going to have an ambulance board meeting. I called and told him … but he brings his friends and gripes. It’s just a gripe session, and they’re making a circus out of the fiscal court and I won’t let them do that to the ambulance board,” Noble said.
Noble said after the policy changes go into effect, in about two weeks, that anyone of the board members will be able to put any citizen’s concerns or issues on the agenda if they deem them appropriate. However, until then, citizens will have to submit their requests for the meetings to him.
“If he (Engle) wants to say something, he needs to call me and get on the agenda,” Noble said.