Replacement vehicles frustrate Stratf...

Replacement vehicles frustrate Stratford Fire Department

There are 200 comments on the Connecticut Post story from Jun 3, 2011, titled Replacement vehicles frustrate Stratford Fire Department. In it, Connecticut Post reports that:

The Fire Department is still having problems finding replacement trucks, five months after two of its rigs were clobbered in an accident on Interstate 95.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Connecticut Post.

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Red Suspenders

Lawndale, NC

#1 Jun 5, 2011
This never happened when Jay was chief.
this says it all

New Rochelle, NY

#2 Jun 5, 2011
Quit crying!! If your "brothers" weren't so quick to retire on bogus injury claims (and then start second careers fully utilizing those same injured bodies) maybe the town could afford new equipment. Spend a day in Milford and see what a real fire department looks like.
hppla

Mahwah, NJ

#3 Jun 6, 2011
what a joke our fire dpt is ! after reading that article about pensions I can no longer be a supporter of them! notice how they are warning us about some of their future pensions!
thhpt

Southington, CT

#4 Jun 6, 2011
To "this says it all" Get your head out of your a**. you must be one of those people who blame everyone for the actions of a few. There is an entire process going on that you cannot be aware of, or just choose to ignore. My guess is the later.Stop by the FD and let them know how you feel.I'll bet you have neither the courage or the fortitude to talk to anyone of those guys in person. God forbid, if you have kids, I hope they are smarter than you.
And as for hppla, another fool heard from. Again the process involves 2 parties who make a decision. Lets hope you also find the mustard seeds to let the Firefighters know how you feel when they come to your door when you call 911.
No matter how you two troglodytes feel I'm sure Stratford's Bravest will always step up to the plate and perform their duties as they've sworn to do.
Always easy to judge from the cheap seats, how would you perform when the sh*t hits the fan?
hppla

Mahwah, NJ

#5 Jun 6, 2011
Well thank mr firefighter for telling me that when i dial 911 they will respond! kinda like i am paying them to do! thank god they will come out to fight a fire....

because i thought all they did was go shopping, lift weights, watch tv, surf the web, while they worked.........
Wow

Wallingford, CT

#6 Jun 6, 2011
Each and every contract in town was negotiated and agreed to by BOTH parties. It is not as if the firefighters, police, or public works set forth the terms and the town must follow them. Every single issue in an agreement with a union was agreed to by the town.

The Town won every issue they proposed in the last arbitration decision for the pension. The terms of the current pension contract is what the Town wanted and won. The firefighters are merely following that contract. If there are vacancies throughout varying ranks of the fire department there will of course be overtime and this is solely controlled by the Town. The Town is contractually obligated to have promotional lists in place at all times, which they did not. Some of them were over two years old. This was a violation of the Towns agreement with the firefighters and they are the ones that did not follow the agreement. As the article says the firefighters filed grievances against the town to force them to conduct promotional exams to fill the vacancies to limit the amount of overtime because the lists were required by contract. This took an absurd amount of time for the town (human resources) to complete thus further increasing the overtime. When these vacancies occur they need to be filled to ensure there are a proper amount of firefighters on duty to handle the incidents they are sent to. I know I would surely want the same number of firefighters on duty to handle an emergency involving my home or family as would be on duty any other day to handle anyone elses emergencies. If we all pay the same tax rate why should we not all be afforded the same protection?

The town has ways to limit the amount of overtime if they choose to make that decision but they have yet to do so and continue to violate agreements made with the firefighters, which in turn creates even more overtime. Why is this happening yet the head of the department charged with overseeing the town's employees is receiving a raise? Why are the taxpayers not concerned with that?

It is not the firefighters fault when vacancies occur due to inaction on the towns behalf. The firefighters are the ones coming to work, risking their life, to ensure they are there to help save others lives.

Dont blame the firefighters who have and always will follow the contract. The firefighters have and will continue to file grievances when the town fails to follow the negotiated agreement, whether it is beneficial to the firefighters or not because it is the honest thing to do. Once an agreement is negotiated and agreed to both parties should follow that agreement. When the town fails to do so it surely costs them more money in overtime, legal fees, etc. If concerned with money why is it the town continues to do so? Sure seems like alot of money going to attorneys to fight these cases. There is no need for this money to be spent on attorneys and no need for the increase in overtime if the town simply followed the contract they negotiated and agreed to.
Wow Weeee

Bowling Green, SC

#7 Jun 6, 2011
Wow is right. The employees don't set the rules. All the unions have to negotiate with the town to get every contract. The town decides when they will under staff a department and pay overtime, or not have a promotional list and pay overtime. Seems after the politicians approve these contracts they then turn and demonize the employees when taxes need to be raised. It seems they cry poor when it comes time to fund obligations they agreed to in the past, especially at election time. It seems to be the popular thing- attack public employees.
What if all public employees decided to take the first week of July? or September?
No Fire Dept, no police, no trash pick-up, no building inspections, no library books, no parks/beaches open, no schools open, no streets repaired, no sewage disposal, no senior service, no health department, no animal control, no property records......and the list goes on and on.
You don't know what you've got until it's gone.
Wow

Wallingford, CT

#8 Jun 6, 2011
Red Suspenders wrote:
This never happened when Jay was chief.
This is not true. This has been going on for years and not at the fault of the department, its members, or past Chiefs. The Town hires someone as Chief to run the Department but when that Chief, whether it be Natrass, Cybart, Hostetter, or Cavanaugh, plans needed expenses to maintain equipment and replace equipment past its service life and the town fails to fund it you end up in this situation. The apparatus problems the department is dealing with today became paramount when Cybart was Chief, at no fault to Chief Cybart, and have since continued due to the Town not listening to whom they hire to run the department.
hppla

Mahwah, NJ

#9 Jun 6, 2011
I have a great idea......

since we ALL want everything to be "manned" properly so all our families are protected why not go along with the following:

If manning goes below the minimum then why not have a volunteer system in place so that they can come in and fill the vacancies?

I am sure you wouldn't mind that as long as the volunteers are trained properly beforehand. This way we would have a group on call at all times in case of emergencies...... your familiy might be safer in the long run, isn't that what this is all about? everyone being safer?

or is it about the 2 MILLION DOLLARS in the overtime budget.
Oh Great

Hyde Park, NY

#10 Jun 6, 2011
FD still needs trucks to get them there. Isn't that the point of the article.
Wow

Wallingford, CT

#11 Jun 6, 2011
hppla wrote:
I have a great idea......
since we ALL want everything to be "manned" properly so all our families are protected why not go along with the following:
If manning goes below the minimum then why not have a volunteer system in place so that they can come in and fill the vacancies?
I am sure you wouldn't mind that as long as the volunteers are trained properly beforehand. This way we would have a group on call at all times in case of emergencies...... your familiy might be safer in the long run, isn't that what this is all about? everyone being safer?
or is it about the 2 MILLION DOLLARS in the overtime budget.
That is laughable. First we already have a volunteer system in town that had to begin to pay people because there isnt enough volunteers and now has just as many if not more paid employees (that actually work) than volunteers. This is not to speak ill of this department, its members, or any volunteers but it is simply the truth.
Secondly it takes a great amount of time to be trained initially as a firefighter and then even more time to continue to train to stay proficient in all of the various skills that the Stratford Fire Department provides to the citizens. In this town you would never have enough volunteers and they would not have enough time to stay proficient.
Lastly if volunteers are such a good idea I am sure that you would also not mind having volunteers for every type of employment, to include yours. Would you want volunteer teachers for your children, volunteer doctors for your ailments, volunteer mechanics fixing your car, or volunteer carpenters building your house? None of these seem like a good idea so why is it a good idea when it comes to a profession that saves peoples lives?
Wow

Wallingford, CT

#12 Jun 6, 2011
Oh Great wrote:
FD still needs trucks to get them there. Isn't that the point of the article.
You are correct sir and that is the topic this discussion should focus on.
the point

Brooklyn, NY

#13 Jun 6, 2011
Oh Great wrote:
FD still needs trucks to get them there. Isn't that the point of the article.
FD wanted to get their $124,000 in concessions back, but since they cann't , they are going to cry about equipment. Instead of time and a half for ot, do for straight time and use the remainder of the $2 MILLION overtime cash for your equipment brother.
hppla

Mahwah, NJ

#14 Jun 6, 2011
Wow wrote:
<quoted text>
That is laughable. First we already have a volunteer system in town that had to begin to pay people because there isnt enough volunteers and now has just as many if not more paid employees (that actually work) than volunteers. This is not to speak ill of this department, its members, or any volunteers but it is simply the truth.
Secondly it takes a great amount of time to be trained initially as a firefighter and then even more time to continue to train to stay proficient in all of the various skills that the Stratford Fire Department provides to the citizens. In this town you would never have enough volunteers and they would not have enough time to stay proficient.
Lastly if volunteers are such a good idea I am sure that you would also not mind having volunteers for every type of employment, to include yours. Would you want volunteer teachers for your children, volunteer doctors for your ailments, volunteer mechanics fixing your car, or volunteer carpenters building your house? None of these seem like a good idea so why is it a good idea when it comes to a profession that saves peoples lives?
At the rate I pay taxes...... yes I would like volunteers ALL around! I know that isn't going to happen but we would be able to get volunteers ( Shelton and other small towns around) where we could get trained people aalready looking to fill in right here in stratford....
green monster

Mahwah, NJ

#15 Jun 6, 2011
There is no way to justify a 2 million dollar OVERTIME budget......
Wow

Wallingford, CT

#16 Jun 6, 2011
the point wrote:
<quoted text>
FD wanted to get their $124,000 in concessions back, but since they cann't , they are going to cry about equipment. Instead of time and a half for ot, do for straight time and use the remainder of the $2 MILLION overtime cash for your equipment brother.
Where do you come up with your information? This is an outright lie!
Wow

Wallingford, CT

#17 Jun 6, 2011
green monster wrote:
There is no way to justify a 2 million dollar OVERTIME budget......
You are correct it should not be $2 million and if the contract was followed and vacancies were filled it would not be close to that. Again this was at no fault of the firefighters!
Wow

Wallingford, CT

#18 Jun 6, 2011
the point wrote:
<quoted text>
FD wanted to get their $124,000 in concessions back, but since they cann't , they are going to cry about equipment. Instead of time and a half for ot, do for straight time and use the remainder of the $2 MILLION overtime cash for your equipment brother.
]

Furthermore check the dates on any articles regarding problems with equipment and apparatus. This started well before the firefighters gave their concessions. Problems with apparatus and equipment have been going on for years and the firefighters have repeatedly brought it to the publics attention, but nice try Mark.
arbitrator

Mahwah, NJ

#19 Jun 6, 2011
I am sure that now you are in contract negotiations you would be more then willing to address the overtime and come up with a plan to rid the department of overtime.....

we should maybe look to close one of the houses if you guys can't find a way to bring the ot back to reason.....
Wow

Wallingford, CT

#20 Jun 6, 2011
arbitrator wrote:
I am sure that now you are in contract negotiations you would be more then willing to address the overtime and come up with a plan to rid the department of overtime.....
we should maybe look to close one of the houses if you guys can't find a way to bring the ot back to reason.....
The firefighters cannot fix something they did not create and again BOTH sides must agree to a contract. How do you know there hasnt been attempts to address this that fell on deaf ears?

If you want to close firehouses and put the citizens lives in further danger that is your choice but you would be punishing the citizens, not the firefighters, and all because the administration of the town, past and present, cannot follow agreed upon contracts. If these administrations would listen to the unions and department heads and hire new firefighters to fill vacancies, and have current promotional lists to ensure that no vacancies occur the overtime wouldnt be so high.

Same as the position the firefighters are in with the apparatus. If the administrations would listen to the department heads we wouldnt behind the ball on apparatus replacement, but they all know better until it blows up in their face then the blame game starts and the smoke and mirrors come out to attempt to make everyone blame the big bad firefighters, cops, public works, teachers, whoever is the target of the week.

That would be par for the course though Statford Administrations. They do not do their job well, when they are called on it they blame someone else, and they punish the public.

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