Why register? ...To Enhance Your Experience
+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 14 of 14
  1. #1
    Sr. Information Officer NJFFSA16's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    25 NW of the GW
    Posts
    8,434

    Post West Virginia FF's balk...then walk

    Summersville's firefighters walk off the job in budget dispute

    (Summersville-AP) -- A budget battle between the city of
    Summersville and its volunteer fire department heated up last night
    with all 22 active firefighters walking off the job.
    The firefighters resigned after City Council balked at a plan to
    buy a new ladder truck then cut the department's budget for the
    next fiscal year by about 100-thousand dollars. The new budget go
    into affect until July First.
    Mayor Stanley Adkins said last night that he couldn't force the
    firefighters back to work because they're volunteers.
    Neighboring volunteer fire departments in Nicholas County are
    prepared to respond to any fires in Summersville.
    Volunteer firefighter Dave Morton says a budget recently
    approved by City Council didn't include enough money to run the
    fire department and maintain its equipment. He says the department
    had also been trying for the past year to buy a new ladder truck
    but had met resistance from some city officials.
    Adkins says the city can't afford both. A new ladder truck could
    cost as much as 720-thousand dollars.
    The mayor planned to call an emergency meeting of the
    Summersville City Council today.


    (Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
    Proudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
    Be Safe! Lookouts-Awareness-Communications-Escape Routes-Safety Zones

    *Gathering Crust Since 1968*
    On the web at www.section2wildfire.com


  2. #2
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    Pt. Beach, NJ
    Posts
    10,570

    Default

    Not for nothing, but numbers are looking awfully weird here. 22 active volunteers, budget that is cut by $100,000, and there is not enough money left to run the department? My entire department (2 stations, 60 active members) does not have a budget totalling $100,000 in entirety. Their's was CUT by $100,000 - what the heck amount was it before the cut?
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

  3. #3
    Sr. Information Officer NJFFSA16's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    25 NW of the GW
    Posts
    8,434

    Post UPDATED

    SUMMERSVILLE, W.Va. (AP) - Safety concerns and frustration over
    a budget dispute with city officials have prompted Summersville
    Volunteer Fire Chief Kevin Stone and his crew to threaten to quit.
    "From what the guys are saying, they're all going to walk,"
    Stone said Wednesday of the 22-member department. "We're going to
    hang it up. We're all going to quit."
    The firefighters planned to walkout Tuesday night, but agreed to
    delay the move until after an emergency City Council meeting
    planned for Thursday night.
    At the center of the dispute is the department's yearlong effort
    to purchase a new ladder truck.
    The current truck, a 1967 model, is a piece of "junk" that
    never passes its annual certification on the first try, said Stone.
    "There's a good chance ... ," he said, "that you'll have that
    ladder up in the air with somebody on it and it could fall and
    you'll lose a man."
    Stone said the previous City Council agreed last year to let him
    purchase a new truck, estimated at about $700,000, if he and a
    specially appointed committee could find a way to pay for it.
    The solution drafted last summer was to raise city fire service
    fees, which hadn't been increased since 1989, from $25 a year per
    household to $27.50. Business fees have also been changed to follow
    a scale based on square footage.
    "That was to buy the ladder truck," Stone said of the fee
    increases.
    The current City Council denied Stone's efforts to purchase the
    truck, he said, then cut the fire department's budget from $195,000
    to $95,000.
    "They said we could buy what we wanted as long as it would fit
    into our budget," he said. "You can't buy a truck like that and
    still have money to operate."
    He said the city is giving the department the money from the
    fire fees and not allocating any additional funding.
    "That's all we're getting, the fire fee money," Stone said.
    "The city is not helping in any other way."
    "They say the town is not having the revenue coming in that it
    did this time a year ago."
    Stone said that if City Council doesn't provide additional
    funding for the truck and loses the volunteer firefighters, city
    residents will see increases in insurance premiums, which are based
    partly on how soon firefighters can get to the scene of a fire.
    Mayor Stanley Adkins agreed that the city needs a new ladder
    truck, but said the money isn't there.

    (Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
    Proudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
    Be Safe! Lookouts-Awareness-Communications-Escape Routes-Safety Zones

    *Gathering Crust Since 1968*
    On the web at www.section2wildfire.com

  4. #4
    Sr. Information Officer NJFFSA16's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    25 NW of the GW
    Posts
    8,434

    Post They balk, they walk, they talk

    SUMMERSVILLE, W.Va. (AP) - A two-day standoff between the
    Summersville Volunteer Fire Department and the city ended Thursday
    night after a tentative compromise was reached in a dispute over
    funding.
    The firefighters planned to walkout Tuesday night, but nearly
    all agreed to delay the move until after the emergency meeting.
    At the center of the dispute is the department's yearlong effort
    to purchase a new ladder truck. The current truck, a 1967 model, is
    a piece of "junk" that never passes its annual certification on
    the first try, said Fire Chief Kevin Stone. The city also cut about
    $100,000 from the department's budget that begins July 1.
    Under the agreement, any money received from selling the
    existing ladder truck will be applied to the principal loan amount
    of the new aerial truck.
    City Council also will pay off a 1992 truck, freeing up about
    $18,000 a year that can be used to buy a new truck.
    The department will receive all money collected from fire
    service fees.
    City Council also will budget an additional $33,000 a year for
    the department for payments on the new truck.
    The department also will receive money collected from
    nonresidents involved in accidents or fires to which the department
    responds.
    Mayor Stanley Adkins, Recorder Jeff Asbury and three council
    members said they would approve the proposal. Four other members
    said they wanted more time to review the bids for the new truck and
    the city's budget.
    Stone said the firefighters were disappointed the department
    would receive only the money collected in fire service fees and not
    from property or B&O taxes.
    Council is expected to vote on the compromise April 12.
    ---
    Information from: The Register-Herald,
    http://www.register-herald.com

    (Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

    APTV 04-02-04 0228EST
    Proudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
    Be Safe! Lookouts-Awareness-Communications-Escape Routes-Safety Zones

    *Gathering Crust Since 1968*
    On the web at www.section2wildfire.com

  5. #5
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    19

    Default

    As a firefighter, located about two counties over from the town of Summersville I see no reason why Summerville needs a ladder truck that cost $720,000. I my self own a camp right outside the town and travel there several times a year. The $95,000 they recieve from the city and $50,000 they recieve form the state should be more than enough to run the fire department. I think the fire department has a wishful dream of operating a $720,000 truck in which they have no need for....a small quint or even a nice used ladder truck would be more of a reality...jus my opinion.....

  6. #6
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Location
    New South Wales, Australia
    Posts
    262

    Default

    I don't know anything about the town, or it's structural risk profile, but if a ladder truck is required by this dept, I'd suggest the 1967 model, now 37 years old is well past it's use by date.

  7. #7
    Forum Member cellblock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    St Gabriel, La
    Posts
    708

    Default

    Mayor Stanley Adkins said last night that he couldn't force the firefighters back to work because they're volunteers.
    HeHe...had to laugh at this one. It's my favorite excuse used by my Chief when we can't get anyone to attend meetings, training or take classes. His answer is always the same, "You can't make a volunteer do anything."
    Steve
    EMT/Security Officer

  8. #8
    MembersZone Subscriber mohican's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    850

    Default sounds like there is some blame on both sides...

    It would take a lot, I mean an extreme amount of BS, to walk out on my volunteer FD. The article makes it sound like the village council reneged on an agreement, but still, to walk out? And over a ladder truck?

    I guess I need a little more info before I cast too many stones at them. Is this ladder their "first due" piece, or is it used as support or for taller structures?

    I see so many rural vfd's that still have primary engines from the 70s, or hand me downs. A 22 person vfd needing a high dollar ladder?

    On the other hand, it sounds like the council did a bait and switch ie you can raise the fire fund for additional funds. And when they raise their fee, say "there's your money, boys, and lower the rest of the budget, so that there is not net gain. kinda like lotteries. The lotteries are "to help fund schools"? right? but when other parts of their budget are cut, then is there a gain?


    Bones, I know what you mean. We cover fire,ems, and rescue 53 square miles on 66k year tax funds, + ems billing.

    If the town can't afford a new ladder, isn't that what the FEMA grant is for

  9. #9
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    3

    Thumbs up Summersville VFD

    Are you Kidding me?

    First of all, the person that made the laugh at the fact that "You cann't make volunteers do anything" is the biggest problem in many of the Rural fire departments. Some times, it is even the standard. I know fire dept. members that have joined our dept. on fire to do everything to help the fire department's public image and before all is said and done, they are chastised and eventually they leave feeling that they done something wrong. Yes, we are volunteers and can leave at any time, but if you are not going to take the job serious the way it needs to be, then you shouldn't be in the dept. in the first place. To laugh at a chief because he can't make members do anything is sad and you should be ashamed.

    I know Summersville. I have familey there. There is plent of reason to have a small ladder truck, I don't know that a $750K would be over kill but I am not on thier department. For the city to cut the department budget $100K would hurt. It would be like a man and his familey living on $75k a year, losing his job then having to flip burgers for 15K per year. By the way, I am the fincial officer at my department and the state does not pay $50k per year. They just bumped it to 37k gaurantee just this year from just over 25k gaurantee last year. We actually recieved 38k.

    Our County give us a $20,000 alotment from the budget and has since 1994. They also give us $5000 for a First Responder contract. This just happened 2 years ago. I just went before them with a presentation showing that 6 years ago, I could run the day to day expences with the county money and use the state money and fund raisers for equipment. Now the $20k bearly pays all the insurance and utilities. As a matter of fact, it doesn't.

    The issue here is that Summersville is a growing community and I don't understand why the council cut there money. Yes, there are many options to research but when a VOLUNTEER organzation can not keep the support of the very people they protect, it is sad. They must have not had a reminder of how important the Volunteer fire department is.

    My problem is that we are 1 of 5 independant VFDs in a county that can't agree on anything so a walk out could not happen. Most of the fire departments in our county have a bad enough public opion (including mine) that some people just would not care.


    This is just my opinion and opinions are like breath, everyone has it and lot of them stink.

    Hats off to S.V.F.D. for sticking to there guns.
    Capt. David B. Farra
    Cottageville Volunteer Fire Department, Inc.
    Secretary / Treasurer

    EMT-B, SSI Certified Diver, Bomb Tech. Asst. Fire Fighter, Haz-Mat Ops

  10. #10
    Forum Member cellblock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    St Gabriel, La
    Posts
    708

    Default

    To laugh at a chief because he can't make members do anything is sad and you should be ashamed.
    I wasn't laughing at my Chief. I was laughing because the Mayor made a statement which defines the way departments like mime operate.
    What do I have to be ashamed of?
    Ashamed for standing up and demanding an end to the apathy prevailant in my department regarding training? Ashamed for criticizing the officers who would rather run the department as a social club instead of a emergency service organisation? Ashamed for looking outside of my department for training when none is offered locally? Ashamed for trying to pass a ban on alcohol consumption at monthly business and training meetings? Ashamed of trying to require members to attend a minumim persentage of meetings and training drills to maintain membership? Ashamed that my department's unofficial motto seems to be "You can't make a volunteer do anything"?
    No. I'm not ashamed of anything. I'm ****ed off. So ****ed off that after 4 years of trying to change things as a member of the Board I realised that I was just spinning my wheels. So I gave up my position and decided to just do the minumum required to keep my active status. Maybe in a few years, attitudes will change and then, if I'm still around, I will be there to support those wanting change.
    Steve
    EMT/Security Officer

  11. #11
    Sr. Information Officer NJFFSA16's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    25 NW of the GW
    Posts
    8,434

    Post April 13th Update

    SUMMERSVILLE, W.Va. (AP) - City Council has agreed to pay half
    the monthly cost of a loan so the town's volunteer fire department
    can buy a new ladder truck, Mayor Stanley Adkins said Tuesday.
    The council on Monday voted 7-1 to pick up half the $66,000
    monthly payment for a 15-year loan to buy the $687,000 vehicle. The
    city's annual budget is $2.5 million.
    The fire department will pay the other half of the monthly cost.
    The old truck will be put up for sale and the proceeds used to
    reduce the debt, Adkins said. He has been told the truck is worth
    about $30,000.
    The fire department has several other trucks that will continue
    to be used.
    The city had wanted to buy a used truck, but firefighters said
    they needed a new one and had threatened to walk out over the
    issue. A two-day walkout ended earlier this month when the city
    agreed to finance half the cost of the new truck.
    The fire department had been trying for a year to buy a new
    ladder truck. The current truck, a 1967 model, is a piece of
    "junk" that never passes its annual certification on the first
    try, Fire Chief Kevin Stone has said. The city also cut about
    $100,000 from the department's budget that begins July 1.
    The agreement called for the department to receive all money
    collected from fire service fees and money collected from
    nonresidents involved in accidents or fires to which the department
    responds.

    (Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
    Proudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
    Be Safe! Lookouts-Awareness-Communications-Escape Routes-Safety Zones

    *Gathering Crust Since 1968*
    On the web at www.section2wildfire.com

  12. #12
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    136

    Default Re: Summersville VFD

    Originally posted by unit105
    Hats off to S.V.F.D. for sticking to there guns. [/B]
    I highly disagree. I give them a big thumbs down for telling the citizens of Summersville "We don't give a damn about you." That makes FFs everywhere look bad. To put all of their lives at risk because it didn't appear they could get a brand new $700,000 ladder truck shows no class.

  13. #13
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    4

    Default

    Hey, I'm from the area of summersville and know the place blind folded
    I don't like the idea of them walking off the job, and it will not prove any thing knowing the city officals there really is no reason for them to have a ladder truck unless it is a 4-wheel drive cause all
    there is hills and big drop offs down the side of a mountain and a lot
    of curves with coal trucks, Yes we are all volunteers and we may not get all the stuff we need, but it is the residents that suffer not
    anyone else. oh, I am new at this computer stuff.

  14. #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    136

    Default

    RAK, I am from WV too and have been to Summersville a few times. I'm not all that familiar with it, but I've been to the lake a few times.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts