According to Audrain Ambulance District meeting minutes, the ambulance board voted unanimously to terminate the employment of its administrator, Kevin Payne. A search for his replacement reportedly has not begun.
The May 29 minutes state that Chair JoEllen Craghead called the open meeting to order in the Bank of America Conference Room at 9:37 a.m., with six members present – Vice Chair Doris Schutte, Treasurer Paul Day, Secretary Bill Friday and members Josh Biggers and Lewis Brooks.
At 9:38, a motion was made to adjourn into closed session, to discuss personnel matters. The group returned for an open meeting on May 30, and by roll call (in less than a minute), voted 6-0 to terminate Payne.
No cause for the firing was revealed in the meeting minutes and a reason was not divulged due to laws regarding closed records of personnel matters discussed in closed session.
Payne, formerly from House Springs in Jefferson County, southwest of St. Louis, joined the Audrain Ambulance District in 2009, bringing service experience including instructor and director positions. He served as the director of emergency services with Stafford County Emergency Services in St. John, Kansas. He also served as a paramedic for more than 15 years, and had experience with the St. Charles City Fire Department, St. Joseph Healthcare Center in St. Charles, and the St. Charles City Adult Education. In 2009, the board voted unanimously to hire and pay Payne a $55,000 yearly salary.
During his tenure, Payne oversaw the purchase of property for the district's home base, kept revenues steady, purchased all-weather rescue equipment and added to the board's fleet of ambulances. Payne also increased personnel numbers and training, and served as the vice-chair on the Local Emergency Planning Committee.
In other ambulance district news, strides are still being made to break ground on the property purchased for the district's home base, located off South Clark Street. Sealed bids for the construction were reviewed at the June 3 regular board meeting.
In an update concerning the Boulevard property that was initially purchased for the district home base, the district is pursuing legal action regarding the run-off of a faulty city sewer line that was discovered months after the land was purchased. A motion was passed 5-0 to list the Boulevard property for sale with ReMax realtors. Meanwhile, the board has also hired Central Missouri Tree Care, LLC, to remove several trees and to clean up all wood and brush from the Boulevard site.