COHOES, N.Y.(NEWS10) – Less than a month of new ambulance service in Cohoes, concern and confusion remain for some residents.

For the last 30 years Empire ambulance has provided services to the city of Cohoes not charging a dime instead billing patients. However, the city has a new contract with the company Ambulnz now putting taxpayers on the hook for $50,000 a month.

Helen Annely wife of a Cohoes firefighter she says she seen first-hand the issues EMS come across on a daily basis and has organized a petition telling me the wait time for ambulance to arrive is a big concern.

“I can’t imagine what it’s like for some of these people that are waiting for 45 minutes 60 Minutes 2 hours for an ambulance it must feel like forever,” said Annely.

Annely believes the money being spent on private ambulance service could be better spent by Cohoes investing in its own transport EMS.

“Being able to collect the revenue that you get from insurance would offset the cost of getting an ambulance in the city, so it just seems to make sense to get our own”

The mayor disagrees, saying he believes response times are a product of a national increase in 911 calls and over burdening emergency rooms.

“Ambulances are getting tied up at the emergency room. You know, during the admission process. So, there are occasions where they sit there for one, two, three, I’ve heard of one story where they sat there for 4 hours,” said Mayor Keeler.

In an effort to save money Cohoes Mayor William Keeler is reaching out to his neighbors for a more affordable option as the current contract with Ambulnz is a month-to-month basis.

“The city put out a request for a proposal on Friday, a couple of days ago. We are going to see what ambulance squads want to bid on the Cohoes contracts,” said Mayor Keeler.