1. #1
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Question Unqualified appointed chief

    I live in a small town of about 300.
    we have as firedepartment, but the same four guys show up to the meetings. At the end of the year the others complain about the pay " we were at more then 5 fires" wehatever...
    Any way the mayor of our village has appointed an un certified firechief to train us/ what grounds does thea mayor have in doing that, and what laws let her do that.
    and what do we do as a fire department. I don't want to be trained wrong. or have someone perish because of this decision.
    the boatman...

  2. #2
    Firehouse.com Guest


    The problem is that if you are a village fire department then they own you. Your mayor is in charge if the city council says she is not much you can do other than talk to them about your concerns and hope they care(odds are they do).

    Good luck!!!

  3. #3
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Red face

    NOT, I'll have to disagree with you d308, odds are most likely not. My board appointed the Unqualified chief of my department and we have come to them countless times with concerns and complaints. If they were concerned, they would at least say they were.

    Training Officer
    Olney - Walluski Fire District # 35 (Oregon)

    [This message has been edited by james35 (edited 05-13-2001).]

  4. #4
    Dr. Law
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Try this.
    Get yourself a set of Essentials of Firefighting Books. Have a slug of them with you when you next see your chief. If need be, talk to him or her in private. Point out the need for training (not for the chief - but for the crews) because of the risk of injury or death without proper training, the ability to improve an ISO rating with training, and most important of all, the liability that comes with being a Chief. Save that one for last.
    Oh yes, since you posted here, and you identified yourself as coming from this small town, do you think that there might be some odds on your chief finding this post already? If so, might be time to come hat in hand on this. After all, that person, qualified or not, is the chief, appointed by the Mayor, who, in Illinois, can be a king or queen in a small town.
    Also, if you looked, you might have noticed that FIREHOUSE.COM has downloadable training session material. This whole website is a fairly valuable resource, from the standpoint of educating your chief on the responsibility that rests on the Chief's position.
    Another thing is to use area resources. Does your county have Mutual Aid Associations? If not, why not start one?
    Hope this helps.

  5. #5
    Firehouse.com Guest


    james35, You may be right, lets just hope for his sake that you are not. It is a shame that there are people that get in positions like mayor our counciler and do not care about fire protection our the lives of their firefighters.

    Any way no insult intended.
    BE SAFE!!

  6. #6
    Firehouse.com Guest


    I don't know the demographics of your department, but here's one thing to keep in mind...there's a thin line between "unqualified" and "most qualified." Being from a small town myself (Pop. 1000), we got into this last year. I was appointed chief by the mayor (city ran fire department). Now, I'm not qualified to be a chief by most standards, however, compared to the rest of the dept. I was the "most qualified." Since then every FF has had his say in most issues and everyone helps out in training, etc. Give your chief a chance and help him out. Takes more than one guy to make a good fire department.

    Now, I'm assuming your dept. is much like ours, funded by the city, ran by city council. The mayor is the "President" and the council your "board of directors." If she appoints someone to the chief spot and the council approves with a majority vote, I don't see much you can do there. Hope things go well for you.

  7. #7
    Firehouse.com Guest


    I know some guys don't like it because of the "good ole boys" syndrome but our departent membership elects the chief and then he is "approved" by the city council. I personnally prefer this (not just because I'm chief now). Our mayor tries a couple of years ago to change the city ordinance to have the chief appointed by himself. Most of our council members agreed that the people best qualified to decide who is qualified to be chief is the firefighters themselfs. After the members let it be known they would walk if this choice was taken away from them and the council let the mayor know they would not support him he dropped the issue. Perhaps you could swing this decision from the council to your membership. If not try working with your council and your new chief on developing guidelines and qualifications for appointment of future chiefs. We have by-laws that pertain to the qualifications of the chief and other officers. This helps avoid it becoming simply a popularity contest. Good luck.

    I shall fear no evil, for I am a Firefighter

  8. #8
    Brian Dunlap
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs down

    It is sad to say but when this un-qualified Chief makes a decesion that destroys a piece of equipment, someones property, gets somebody hurt or God-For-Bid Killed then maybe the Mayor will stop playing pollitics and appoint someone with training before she goes on trial --- Someone from this Community should go to the state and report this before something un-godly does happen


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