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City of Utica Attorney: "city will continue ambulance service"

By JOLEEN FERRIS

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - An attorney representing the City of Utica says the city will not stop running its ambulance service Friday as it has been directed to do by the state. The New York State Department of Health has ordered the city to stop operating its ambulance service at midnight this Friday, but the city has filed an appeal and, on that basis, will continue the operation of the ambulance service.

"It's the city's position that upon filing a notice of appeal, the city is entitled to an automatic stay which would permit the city to continue operations of its ambulance service," says city’s attorney in the matter, Mary Roach, of the Albany Firm, Roemer, Wallens, Gold & Mineaux.

The State Emergency Medical Services Council, or, "SEMSCO", has denied the department the certificate of need required to keep its ambulance service running. The city asked a court to rule that the certificate wasn’t required. The court dismissed the city's proceeding.

Utica Mayor David Roefaro says he isn't surprised.

"This recent round, we lost in court," said Mayor Roefaro. "It would have went to the appellate division anyway, whether we won this case or whether we lost this case, as in this instance. If we won, I'm sure the other side would have appealed it and it would have went to the appellate division anyway. We never thought that this was the last round. We always knew that we were going to end up in the appellate division."

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