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Wyatt Howell

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May 10, 2013
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Drop personal issues and focus on citizen safety

The members of Nevada County Professional Firefighters, Local 3800, are dedicated to providing the citizens of the areas they protect with exceptional emergency fire, medical and rescue services in the most efficient and cost-effective manner possible.

We focus on this every day, and the citizens of our area have a highly trained and competent workforce of firefighters protecting them.

Recently, however, the focus within Nevada County Consolidated Fire District at the administrative level has shifted to issues of district governance, employment disputes and public bickering among elected officials and management. The district is governed by a seven-member board and all are responsible for the decisions that are made. No single member has the ability to act or pass directives or commit the use of public funds.

These points of focus are appearing to have adverse effects on the provision of emergency services, making it seem as though they are less efficient and hampering the day-to-day operations of multiple fire agencies in western Nevada County. The truth is that an exorbitant amount of time and resources are being devoted to a seemingly never-ending litany of problems encompassing employee sensitivity, potential disputes and a punitive recall campaign.

It is now time for all stakeholders in the provision of fire, emergency medical and rescue services throughout western Nevada County to make the delivery of these services their sole priority. This includes all elected, appointed and line staff of the fire agencies involved. The citizens deserve to have organizations performing this work that are transparent, in compliance with the law and well governed. They deserve a workforce that is free from hostility. They deserve a rapid, highly skilled and efficient response to their emergencies, whatever they may be.

This can only be accomplished if all parties, from the top of these organizations to the bottom, get together and make the health of the agencies their primary goal over any personal issues or agendas they may have individually.

Wyatt Howell writes on behalf of Nevada County Professional Firefighters.


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The Union Updated May 10, 2013 09:36PM Published May 10, 2013 09:34PM Copyright 2013 The Union. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.