FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — Three Rivers Ambulance Authority (TRAA) continues to reinvent itself in the tumultuous world of emergency services.

The most recent change is TRAA expecting county fire departments to start hiring more paramedics.

“We’ve got a limited resource in our community for paramedics, we feel like there is a need to retain them,” said TRAA Executive Director Joel Benz.

And out of that need, Benz says that his board will be putting forth a proactive system to retain paramedics and other staff.

“We have made such progress over the last year here in the right direction and making sure we have people to respond when someone calls 911, we don’t want to go backward,” Benz said.

To that tune, his board approved a $1 million plan to retain staff with bonuses.

The amounts are different, but Benz said that the stipulation is the same: if you currently work at TRAA and agree to continue working there for two years, then you qualify for the following benefits:

  • $25,000 for Paramedics
  • About $8,000 for EMTs
  • A lesser amount for dispatchers

Benz told WANE 15 that the bonuses should be implemented shortly, and the funds will come from money Fort Wayne City Council allocated to TRAA.