6 Herkimer Co. fire departments consider consolidation

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option 2

Utica, NY

#2 Oct 21, 2013
is no brainer...

Consolidation: The options
Below are the five options provided by the fire department consolidation study done by Summit Lake Consulting LLC in Albany for six departments in Herkimer County.

OPTION 1-A

Employee status: All would be paid. There would be 17 firefighters on duty 24/7 and six firefighters trained as medics on duty 24/7, with 119 personnel total.

Estimated cost:$8,613,860

OPTION 1-B

Employee status: This option would be the same as 1-A, however, instead of using firefighters as medics, full-time medics would run the ambulances.

Estimated cost:$7,794,660

OPTION 2

Employee status: Basically the same as the six departments have now but would operate under one fire chief and dispatching program. The six municipalities still would control the finances and income generated by the departments would be out of their control.

Estimated cost:$4,168,888.81

OPTION 3-A

Employee status: Would man three companies 24/7 and three others 10 hours during the day Monday through Friday with paid firefighters. Three ambulances would be manned 24/7 by full or part-time medics. Volunteer firefighters would fill in after paid firefighters leave after eight or 10 hours each day.

Estimated cost:$5,911,860

OPTION 3-B

Employee status: Basically the same as Option 3-A except that qualified call-in personnel would be used to fill in for paid personnel when they are off-duty. Volunteers would have the option to train at no cost to them to a level of a career firefighter and fill in as necessary.

Estimated cost:$4,967,000

Source: Fire department consolidation study done by Summit Lake Consulting LLC in Albany.
Blah

Utica, NY

#3 Oct 21, 2013
This is all baloney. If this was truly some huge savings then let's print what it costs now. They are not doing this simple thing, and it's very telling the fire unions in the valley are behind this all.

This is similar to how the UFD wants to take over the suburbs. These union fire Union fire fighting jobs are not serving the population or call volume they were decades ago. This is not good for their continued existence. So what has to be done is that they need to take over new territory beyond what they have now. It's not good for the communities or the overall health of the tax payer.

This study shows no cost savings. Just basically spend 8 mill so you can have paid guys at the station for 2 dozen calls a week. It doesn't mention in the paper article if response times will increase or decrease. Why? Why is there no mention of the pension costs for these new paid positions? Healthcare? Who's responsible for disability or future and current comp issues? Who will the fire chief be accountable to, the new district commissioners or the towns and villages heads of office? Will there be a lack of accountability and control for those municipalities. Will this staffing be compliant with NFPA? Will the area see ISO rates plummet with less stations and manpower even if that manpower is now career based?

Everyone runs to the word consolidate because our rag paper thinks it's the end to all evils. If done right for the right reasons it can be beneficial. Done for personal or reasons of special interests than the tax payer will always lose.
Scum

Utica, NY

#4 Oct 21, 2013
IAFF scum at its finest.
Hey

Clinton, NY

#5 Oct 21, 2013
Its just a study, most studies see no action afterwards. If this sparks interest in working together and sharing, then at least something was accomplished. I don't hardly think that fire unions influenced independent consultants. The recommendations might come to improve response times. Unless you've read the study its hard to pass opinion on it. I wouldn't even begin to form an opinion based on the small amount of info in the newspaper.
daleuscum

Little Falls, NY

#6 Oct 21, 2013
Could six fire departments in Herkimer County consolidate to form one fire district?

It depends on whom you ask.

For volunteer fire departments in Frankfort, Mohawk and East Herkimer, manpower issues would be resolved with consolidation, but it could mean an increase in taxes in the coverage area.

For paid fire departments in Ilion, Herkimer and Little Falls, it could mean a decrease in costs to taxpayers.

A consolidation study recently completed by Summit Lake Consulting LLC in Albany examined the six fire departments and came up with five options that would help improve services and potentially save money.

“The way they’re operating now, they’re really doing the best they can,” said Marty Tillapaugh, a consultant on the study and retired fire chief.“Now they have six chiefs, six management styles, six operation procedures. We just feel in their situation with the problems they have, one department would solve a lot of their problems and we think it would improve their response times.”

The study offers varying options — a fire district with paid firefighters and emergency medical services to a mix of paid and volunteer firefighters and part-time paramedics — all honing on the creation of one fire district, which would be governed by a board of fire commissioners.

None of the options, however, illustrate a cost savings when comparing them to the total budgets of the six departments combined. Tillapaugh contends that depending on how the fire district is set up, there could be savings.

Cost savings?

Ilion Village Fire Chief Jim Trevett said if the fire departments combined, the cost per resident would go down.

“We are a career department. It’s going to help us save in costs joining forces,” he said.“I’m absolutely interested in pursuing (consolidation)… anything that’s going to save money for the villages and residents is well worth looking into.”

Tillapaugh said they used a population estimate of 43,000 in the new fire district, and divided that number into each option’s estimated total cost. Tax data was not available.

Doing the same for the current total costs for each department, Ilion Herkimer and Little Falls residents would save money if one of the last two options was pursue. Those options would man three companies 24/7 and three others 10 hours per day Monday through Friday with career firefighters and three ambulances manned 24/7 with full-time or part-time medics.

The other options show increases — especially for volunteer fire departments, which have no salary and benefit costs.Read more: http://www.uticaod.com/news/x638682536/6-Herk...
real firemen r out west

Utica, NY

#7 Oct 22, 2013
Go volunteer and save millions
be real

Sistersville, WV

#8 Oct 22, 2013
who wants a bunch of drunk ilion firemen trying to save their home?
circling

New York, NY

#9 Oct 22, 2013
the wagons, part deaux
truth is

Utica, NY

#10 Oct 22, 2013
the cooks from the herk fire dept, that's when they are not doing construction
Laughing

Fayetteville, NY

#11 Oct 22, 2013
Blah wrote:
This is all baloney. If this was truly some huge savings then let's print what it costs now. They are not doing this simple thing, and it's very telling the fire unions in the valley are behind this all.
This is similar to how the UFD wants to take over the suburbs. These union fire Union fire fighting jobs are not serving the population or call volume they were decades ago. This is not good for their continued existence. So what has to be done is that they need to take over new territory beyond what they have now. It's not good for the communities or the overall health of the tax payer.
This study shows no cost savings. Just basically spend 8 mill so you can have paid guys at the station for 2 dozen calls a week. It doesn't mention in the paper article if response times will increase or decrease. Why? Why is there no mention of the pension costs for these new paid positions? Healthcare? Who's responsible for disability or future and current comp issues? Who will the fire chief be accountable to, the new district commissioners or the towns and villages heads of office? Will there be a lack of accountability and control for those municipalities. Will this staffing be compliant with NFPA? Will the area see ISO rates plummet with less stations and manpower even if that manpower is now career based?
Everyone runs to the word consolidate because our rag paper thinks it's the end to all evils. If done right for the right reasons it can be beneficial. Done for personal or reasons of special interests than the tax payer will always lose.
Apparently you have this all figured out, it's some big conspiracy! You pick out the most expensive option and probably the one that no one will consider just to jump on your soap box. Your rant shows you already have disdain for UFD and career departments.
Since there are 3 career and 3 volunteer departments in the study, I think the playing field is pretty level. I give them credit for even looking into sharing or consolidation. It's just a study, now I would imagine their next step is to digest information and come up with options they have, if any.
Don't try starting friction for your self-gratification, especially when you apparently have no clue.
Yep Yep Yep

Washington, DC

#12 Oct 22, 2013
only makes sense
yep yep yep

Little Falls, NY

#13 Oct 24, 2013
its being brought into legislation, thank all mighty allah
pretend to be smart

Utica, NY

#14 Oct 25, 2013
yep yep yep wrote:
its being brought into legislation, thank all mighty allah
Except that it is not. Besides, being "brought into legislation" doesn't even make any sense.

Trolls will troll...
torch shamwow house

Utica, NY

#15 Oct 25, 2013
real firemen r out west wrote:
Go volunteer and save millions
Right after they go volunteer, we'll be sure to start your house on fire so you can see how well your idea worked out.
tuff guy

Little Falls, NY

#16 Oct 27, 2013
Your threat has been repoted. Now go fcuk yourself
talks continue

Utica, NY

#17 Nov 4, 2013
well keep talking and save us millions, volunteer now

Herkimer Firefighter and EMT Tim Hartman prepares to check the gauges on a pumper. Herkimer was one of six area fire departments that took part in a consolidation study that determined the departments would function more efficiently and effectively if they consolidated into one department. Posted Nov. 3, 2013 @ 5:38 pm

Herkimer, N.Y.
HERKIMER — The six area fire departments that participated in a recent study would function more efficiently and effectively if they consolidated into one department, according to a consulting firm.

Summit Lake Consulting came to this conclusion after reviewing and analyzing data from the Herkimer, Ilion, Mohawk and Little Falls career fire departments and the Mohawk, Frankfort and East Herkimer volunteer departments, and meeting with fire chiefs and others to discuss the various departments’ needs and expectations.

“We found the departments are functional, but not as effective as they could be. Most alarms are answered within a reasonable time span, but not always within the current national standards,” according to the study.“There is a tendency to have a ‘do the best with what we have’ attitude that can be dangerous to the operational effectiveness of the departments.”

The consultants outlined three possible options for a consolidated fire district and stated,“The consolidation of fire service deliveries will lead to more efficient use of public money.”

The outcome of those findings is now in the hands of local fire chiefs and elected officials.

“There’s no time frame. The chiefs are going to sit down and see what each is willing to accomplish,” said Robert Vandawalker, director of Herkimer County Emergency Services. He said some departments might pull out of the study.“We may use none of the options listed, but it may give us some good ideas. At least it will open up the line of communications.

“Something does need to be done,” he added.“We’ve seen response time increase, especially in the volunteer departments where manpower is down. That’s a good indication we need to reverse that trend somehow.”

As a department loses manpower, he said, the ratio of responders to citizens increases.“People don’t get the individual attention they should or it could be delayed unless you have a good warning what is coming and we didn’t,” said Vandawalker.

On June 27, he said,“We had a watch for minor flooding; that’s culverts and puddles. While we did look at the situation, we went to bed pretty confident that the storm would miss us, but it tracked a different way.”

The study shows a duplication of apparatus and vehicles, said Vandawalker.

“We could look at sharing more on that end,” he said.

He added,“We’re also trying to break a huge culture and tradition — unfortunately, tradition doesn’t mean progress. Whatever comes out of it should be an improvement.”

Career departments

Ilion Fire Chief James Trevett didn’t know how the village board in Ilion would respond to the study.

“The chiefs will still meet and hopefully come up with something we could present to all the boards,” he said.“Whether they agree or disagree, my hope is that the six chiefs will still meet together. These weren’t the perfect suggestions for us, but my hope is that we will keep moving forward. There are a lot of things in there that might not work for us, but there may be some things that would give us an idea of something that might work.”

Read more: http://www.herkimertelegram.com/article/20131...
torch shamwow house

Utica, NY

#18 Nov 4, 2013
talks continue wrote:
well keep talking and save us millions, volunteer now
There is no "millions" to save.

We vote to burn your house down first as a new test of the volunteer system if it passes. You want to push this bullshit so hard then step up and volunteer your shack as the first burn building.

Don't like what services are offered here, move. Problem solved. Nobody will miss you, Blais.
chief

Utica, NY

#19 Nov 4, 2013
og kcuf ruoy rehtom
torch shamwow house

Utica, NY

#20 Nov 4, 2013
chief wrote:
og kcuf ruoy rehtom
wow, aren't you about as clever as a second grader.....
supporter

New York, NY

#21 Nov 4, 2013
First off for little falls to take part is crazy. you know how long it would take them to get to Herkimer area. I am sure that they would not leave the city until they got backup in to their station first. second, herkimer and ilion have now idea how to fight a fire out in the counry with limited water supply. third where are you going to get more career firefighters. there is not a career department out there, that have a large waiting list. as for the vol firemen, with all the state requirements, it is hard for them to get the time to do all. as for the vol. depts. in this county they out number the career depts. by 90 per cent. as for a career firemen they can get paid for their training, a vol. can not under sate law. if this law was to be changed I really think you would see more vols willing to try it. as for east Herkimer, Mohawk and Frankfort I do not believe the taxpayers could take and more cost.

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