Dear Brothers and Sisters

On August 12, 2002 Miami-Dade FL Fire Rescue will open its Applicant Filing period to last until August 26, 2002. This is the first step in compiling the hiring eligible list that will be certified in July 2003. I am putting this info out (Unofficial and ON My Own) in attempt to get experienced FF's from all over the country to Miami-Dade. We have had an incredible turnover in recent years and are hiring less and less experience. YOU MUST FILE IN PERSON!! No interest cards to fill out and NO APPS BY MAIL.
Listed below is some background info about Miami-Dade Fire Rescue.

On Hiring

The dept. hires off of a written exam (40%) a pass/fail CPAT, and oral interview (60%).
Extensive background check, drug screen, medical exam. NO Polygraph.
At this time there are NO policies in place to give preference to certified FF's/EMT's/or Paramedics. Just Veterans 5 points per Florida Law. There will be NO lottery, Florida folks you know what I'm talking about.

FL State Certifed FFs/EMTs/Paramedics go thru a mini 8 week Fire Academy. You must have the FF cert to go thru the mini academy. All others go thru a 6 month academy. However, this can be reduced if you "challenge" the state FF, EMT or paramedic certifications. EMT/Paramedic is pretty easy to challenge, just a written exam, if you are Natioanl Registry. If you get EMT/Paramedic certified, that cuts 2 months off of your academy time. Fire Academy time is full pay at about a $28,000 salary.

Dept. Operations

MDFR utilizes a "single tier" system. We do it all. ALL FF's must be minimum FF/EMT's and almost a majority are FF/Paramedics. There are 3 Operations Div Chiefs, 12 Battalion Chiefs. Suppression units are Engines and 50' Tele-Squrts (Pierce Quantums) for the most part, with a 5 65' aerials and 2 100' platforms, 2 2000gal tankers, 1 Heavy Rescue, 6 MIA Airport trucks, 1 air truck, 1 HAZMAT, 3 Air Rescue Helicopters (We own the Helos and FF's fly em) and a Marine Services Division thrown in. Total of 49 staffed units. Suppression Units are staffed with 4 FF's at all times per our IAFF Local 1403 Contract. 3 more suppression units are scheduled to open in the next year. 12 suppresion units are ALS/Paramedic with more to be converted. 4 units are TRT (Technical Rescue) capable. 1 Engine and 1 Aerial are also HAZMAT.

Rescues (not Heavy, ambulances) are staffed with 3 at all times. In addition to running med calls, they operate as truck companies at fires. SAR, Forcible Entry, Ventilation. Most rescues carry full compliment of JAWS and some carry K-12 saws. FF's on these units are paramedics and go from cardiac arrests to entrapments to house fires. There are a total of 43 of these units with 2-3 more slated for the next year.

Salary and Benefits

Starting Salary upon Fire Academy Graduation is about $43,000 for FF/EMT and
about $49,000 for FF/Paramedics. This does not include extra pay for college, which is 5% for Fire, EMS, Nursing or Public Admin, 2 or 4 year degrees. There are also other additional incentives.

Due to the current rate of retirees and contractual staffing requirements, Overtime is plentiful and "always there." Work schedule is 24on/48off, with a kelly day.

Florida is a "NO TAX" state. No state income tax, property taxes are significantly lower when compared to other major metro areas. State sales tax is only 6%.
Our retirement is Florida Retirement System (FRS) at 3% annually with NO payroll deduction and a 457 fund (deferedComp). You can retire without penalty at 25 years at any age or at age 55 with at least 6 years served. FRS DOES have a provision for buying back other state, municipal or federal time served.

Health/Dental Insurance is a PPO, Health Insurance trust, meaning it makes money for us. So when you retire your Health Insurance is FREE. Single FF's Health Insurance is also free, once the county kicks in there share. Lasik eye surgery is covered, braces, etc. We are a "Heart Bill and Disease Presumptive State"


I personally transferred from New York City in 1998, where I worked as a FED FF on Governors Island in Lower Manhattan. I can honestly say this was a great move for me.
I and a few other MDFR FF's have put together a support network of sorts for out of town FF's. If you plan to come down and file in August, let me know. We will arrange for a place for you to stay (our homes), get you to Applicant Filing, plan some "ride alongs" if you want and just party. If enough "out of towners" come in, we will try to plan some sort of "social" maybe in conjunction with our South Florida F.O.O.L.S Chapter. (

Any other questions hit me up here or at (preffered)
FF Jim Dolan
MDFR Engine 56"A"