Our Volunteer Dept. uses a voting process to place officers. There are criteria that come with being able to "run" for a postition though. You must have been on the dept for so many years, etc. I personally do not like this process at all. I have been trying to gather some facts and information in regards to testing candidates before they are allowed to become an officer. Appointments for some positions are acceptable, and elections aren't bad either in some situations, but when it comes down to the life and death scenerios I want a competent source.
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04-02-1999, 06:32 PM #21stone35Firehouse.com Guest
04-05-1999, 10:36 AM #22Perry2085Firehouse.com Guest
I come from a small department who has our Chief appointed by our local Trusties. In our department you have to take a test for the positions of Lt., Captain and Asst. Chief. We currently do not have the position of Asst. Chief but it was replaced by a Executive Captain. My thinking is it shoud be obtained by the best person who's skills of a Firefighter as well as the skills of a manager. The good old days have come and gone. We have to start thinking what is best for our members. Times are changing and we have to change with them.
I once took a exam out of state and I was #1 on the list after the written and physical agility. When I interviewed with the BC's and Captain, I was told I was over-qualified due to my extensive Instructor certificates in Haz-Mat, River, EMS and Extrication. They felt I knew more than thier own training officers and did not want me to show them up.
These days of the good old boys are thru and in every dept there are some that one day will be officers and until then we will have to live with it.
Also we have to inform the public on what we do. PR is what we need these days in order for our money to keep flowing. We take a proactive approach within our dept. It is still unbelivable that we still have people that do not know that we are here 24/7. We need to educate our public and get out and be seen. Let them know what we do for them and others. I hope this helps some. These are just my views expressed here and I hope one day that I will be in a position to charge on with these views.
04-06-1999, 04:39 PM #23Capt. SkippyFirehouse.com Guest
On our Division, the Fire Chief (full-time) is hired by the City Manager (CM), who is hired by city council. The Fire Chief is directly responsibile to the CM, who is resposibile to the council. The rest of the Division are paid-on-call volunteers. The Fire Chief has set up a system where the Asst. Chief, two station Captains and four Lieutenants have to take a written exam and an oral board to be promoted to their positions. This systems includes a point system for years of service (lightly weighted), training hours received (heavily weighted), percentage of runs made (moderately weighted), personnal attitude (moderately weighted) and a set of minimum qualifications (very heavily weighted!). The Asst. Chief is evaulated by the Chief alone, all other positions the Chief and Asst. Chief evaulate them together. Once a decision is made on the appointments by the Chief and Asst. Chief, a recommendation is passed along to the CM for him to make the final decision, since he is the man who "hires and fires". All officers and firefighters are considered part-time city employees by virtue of being paid-on-call, and are thus subject to the same employee handbook as all other city employees. The Fire Chief recommends any disiplinary actions to the CM who then approves or directs otherwise. All in all, the system works relatively well, but as was mentioned earlier, what do you do when there are no canidates that meet the minimum qualifications or the only canidates that apply have extremely poor people skills or none at all. These individuals, in my experience, can cause a department a lot of negitive feelings in the community by their lack of these skills.
04-07-1999, 08:52 AM #24turbotim66Firehouse.com Guest
I worked on a vol fire dept that the officers were all elected by popular vote. Each position had minimum Qual's, and had to be nominated by at least 2 members.Each member had 1 vote/position. they dept was one of the best I have been on, been on 5, 3 vol and 2 paid. the officers voted in know they are there to do a job and get it done. if they mantain a professional attitude there is nothing wrong with this system. If it becomes political the members have no one but them selves to blame.
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