Goshen paramedic departs for ministry

Goshen Mayor Jeremy Stutsman swears in Jade Murphy as a probationary officer with the police department Monday.

GOSHEN — The Goshen Board of Works approved a repayment agreement with a firefighter who left to join the ministry.

The board on Monday approved an agreement with Ryan Ule, a former paramedic-in-training with the Goshen Fire Department, over repayment of the cost of his training. Ule recently left the department to become a missionary in Maine, according to Chief Dan Sink.

“It doesn’t surprise any of us, he and (wife) Lisa were very involved in the church,” he said. “He was a good kid, we hated losing him, (but) it was obvious when you spoke with him, the conviction he had. He and Lisa both felt strongly about that.”

Ule was sworn in as a probationary firefighter in February 2018. Incoming firefighters sign an agreement that if they leave the department within three years, they must repay the cost of their training, up to $15,000.

City attorney Larry Barkes said it’s a common practice and a way for fire departments to guard against someone taking advantage of training and then quickly leaving for another department. But he noted in this case, Ule isn’t joining another department, so he isn’t taking a benefit with him.

The city will charge him $12,531 at 5 percent interest, which Barkes indicated is a lower rate than usual.

Also Monday, the board approved a $2,950 contract with Abonmarche Consulting to evaluate Pringle Park as a possible location for the city’s third splash pad. The firm will do a topographical survey of the land at the park, which is at 1912 W. Lincoln Ave., and see where nearby water and sewer lines could be accessed.

Parks Superintendent Tanya Heyde said the proposal is still in its early stage, and that they wanted to start by identifying a good location for a splash pad and then go from there. The city also has splash pads at Walnut and Rieth parks.

She said Pringle Park is being looked at because of the space available and the number of nearby residents. It’s also next to the Little League field.

Also Monday,

In other business, the board approved:

n The hiring of Jade Murphy as a probationary patrol officer with the Goshen Police Department. She previously worked with the IUSB Police Department as a cadet officer.

n A $6,830 agreement with Earth Source Inc. for wetlands reconnaissance and delineation along the Lincoln Avenue corridor in the East Goshen area. The study is being done in preparation for water line improvements in the area.

The existing water main along the corridor was installed before 1933 and provides a lower than optimal flow for fire hydrants, according to information from Public Works Director Dustin Sailor. The wetland delineation will provide background information to help in designing the replacement water main.

n The purchase by the police department of three new pursuit vehicles at a cost of $26,052 each. The board ratified an agreement made before the end of October in order to meet the order cut-off date for the 2020 Dodge Chargers, which would normally cost more than $40,000 each.

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