ECCFPD set to vote on new staffing model at June 11 meeting
As a result of East County voters rejecting Measure S (a parcel tax specifically aimed at increasing revenue within the ECCFPD) the District will immediately begin plans to close two or three fire stations and issue up to 19 layoff notices. The upcoming ECCFPD Board meeting has been rescheduled for Monday June 11, to allow Board Members (and District staff) time, in the event there were any late swings with the election results, to then proceed on voting for one of two new staffing models, a 3-station, or 4-station model. The District has already studied and provided the public with “what if” scenarios’, if new funding sources (like Measure S) weren’t created and approved by the end of this summer.
The 3 & 4 station models was specifically born out of the May 7 ECCFPD Board meeting, where Chief Henderson presented the board with two staffing options on how to proceed, in the event Measure S was not successful at the ballot box. The Board has until June 25, 2012 to make a final decision on new service models. “While this isn’t the outcome we desired, we’re prepared to provide the best possible service, with the resources available to us,” said Fire Chief Henderson.
Measure S required 2/3’rds voter approval to pass and initial results, though not certified by the County Registrar of Voters, appear to indicate Measure S will not pass.
“We’ve been directly engaged with East County residents since last October and conducted dozens of community meetings on the state of our district. It was at those meetings we heard a desire for increased services and that’s what we put before the voters. Right now, it’s clear a super-majority of voters aren’t willing to pay for additional services, so, now, we have our marching orders and will work with the budget we have, providing the best service possible, even as we are forced to vote on what stations to close and how many firefighters to layoff,” said ECCFPD Board President Kevin Romick after hearing the initial returns for Measure S. “We simply wanted to give voters a choice and we feel we did that, in a straightforward and transparent process,” he later added.
The ECCFPD provides firefighting personnel and emergency medical service (basic life support) to the residents and businesses in Brentwood, Oakley, Discovery Bay, Bethel Island, Knightsen, Byron, Marsh Creek and Morgan Territory. We protect approximately 250 square miles, over 105,000 residents and respond to over 6,200 calls for service a year.
ECCFPD Fire Chief