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    Default Stamford Firefighter Layoffs !!!

    STAMFORD — The city police department will likely reduce staffing in the narcotics, detective, youth bureau and school resource divisions in order to cope with a $1.8 million cut to the department of public safety, health & welfare's budget, Public Information Officer Lt. Sean Cooney said Wednesday.

    Police Chief Brent Larrabee detailed the department's response to the cuts at a Tuesday staff meeting, Cooney said. Larrabee did not return phone calls for comment.

    The school resource program will likely see its nine to ten officers slashed to about four or five, Cooney said.

    Officers will likely be removed from all schools other than the high schools, he said.





    "That's a shame because that's been a very successful, very popular program," Cooney said.
    Efforts to capture Internet child predators will likely be scaled back, Cooney said, and the department's foot patrol — made up of seven officers and two sergeants who walk the city's busy downtown — likely faces elimination, Cooney said.

    Police are not allowed discretionary overtime spending beginning June 1, Cooney said, because Larrabee is trying to reduce overtime spending by about $1.5 million, as per requests from the board of finance.

    While overtime may be used to fill the mandatory minimum of 18 officers per shift, officers may not be used on an event-based basis.

    This means patrols will likely not be dispatched to non-life-threatening calls when a shift is about to end to avoid overtime, Cooney said.

    Instead, patrols will be sent out when a new shift begins, likely resulting in a service backup, Cooney said.

    "The public are going to feel the effect of the wait times, perhaps significant wait times, for non-life-threatening calls," he said.

    Plans to hold another academy class, which would have yielded about 15 new police officers for the understaffed city departments, were also scrapped due to cuts, Cooney said.

    This perpetuates a "vicious cycle" within the department, Cooney said, as the department could see as many as 20 retirements this year.

    "Cutting the academy class might be a short term solution, but it's going to exacerbate the long term problem," he said.

    Announcement of the service cutbacks comes after the recent reduction of the minimum number of police officers on the streets each beat.

    Patrols were cut to 20 officers during the day, and 18 working each night – down from 24 and 20 officers respectively, Police Union President Michael Merenda has said.

    The mandatory minimum number of officers on each shift is 18, but Larrabee has employed 22 to 24 officers per shift in the recent past.

    Larrabee has said he needed officers above to mandatory minimum in order to focus on Internet crime, youth services and homeland security initiatives.

    "We're going to do the best we can, obviously the boards have cut a lot out of the budget and it does have ramifications, and those ramifications have spread across the city," Mayor Dannel Malloy said of the police cutbacks.

    William Callion, Director of Public Safety, Health and Welfare, said "dramatic cuts" made service reductions inevitable in public safety.

    "There's obviously no wiggle room in this budget, the same thing is true with fire, there will probably be layoffs," he said.

    Callion said 10 to 20 firefighters will likely lose their jobs by July 1.

    Positions have been cut from the health department as well, Callion said.

    Board of Finance Chair Mary Lou Rinaldi said cuts were made to force efficiency and empower management to address issues within their departments.

    She said the board didn't eliminate the police department's vacant positions, or its overtime account, as it did in other departments, because it understood the importance of public safety.

    It was a very large budget and we didn't make those decisions lightly," she said. "I'd just encourage [the chief] and everybody else to be creative in managing the budget."

    The cuts leave the police department with a less than optimal budget, for which their appears to be no remedy in the near future, Malloy said.

    Reductions in service may render Stamford's police force "small and reactive," Cooney said.

    "Unfortunately the public is going to see a significant reduction in services that we're going to be able to provide," he said.

    ANY INFO ON THIS !!!!!!!!

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    What was the source of this article, please?

    Quote Originally Posted by Whaler View Post
    "There's obviously no wiggle room in this budget, the same thing is true with fire, there will probably be layoffs," he said.

    Callion said 10 to 20 firefighters will likely lose their jobs by July 1.
    Speculation like that looks like a shot across the bow to me. Words like "probably" and "will likely" only 3 weeks away from the start of a new fiscal year? Don't you think he'd know for sure by now if it was really inevitable? My hunch is that he's looking to get the natives restless and offering contract concessions in a panic to prevent the implied layoffs.

    IMHO, if layoffs were really immanent in Stamford, we'd have heard a lot more about them by now.
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"

    The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

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    Article comes from The Stamford Times.

    The Stamford Union webpage also addresses it.

    http://www.local786.org/

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    That seemed a little shocking seeing how Stamford is growing (at least as far as businesses go).

    How much you want to bet the BOE got a nice increase in their budget?
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    BOE always gets the damn money. SCUMBAGS !!!!!!!

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    There have already been layoffs in various dept with the city of Stamford, even the BOE is taking cuts and not filling positions.

    The police are not going to run an academy this summer, they planned on hiring 15 and thats with the knowlegde that up to 20 officers may retire this year.

    I doubt you will see firefighter layoffs in the 10-20 range but it could happen. I also highly doubt you will see union concessions

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    Malloy unites fire services

    By Natasha Lee and Donna Porstner
    Staff Writers

    June 1, 2007

    STAMFORD - Mayor Dannel Malloy is consolidating Stamford Fire & Rescue and four of the Big Five volunteer fire departments into one paid fire department to save more than a half-million dollars next year.

    Thirty-two firefighters now working for Stamford Fire & Rescue will be redeployed to the volunteer departments to provide consistent fire coverage citywide while overtime is cut at the volunteer companies, officials said.

    The reorganization, announced after a meeting with the fire chiefs Wednesday, was prompted by $545,000 in budget cuts by the Board of Finance and the Board of Representatives, Malloy said.

    "We have more than enough people to cover the districts, but the way we have staffed it in the past has not been terribly efficient," he said.

    The system is costly because the Belltown, Glenbrook and Turn of River volunteer departments have separate staffs and often pay employees overtime to cover for co-workers out sick or on vacation, Malloy said. By sharing employees among departments, he can increase staffing from two or three paid firefighters per shift at the volunteer houses to four, while reducing costs, the mayor said.

    "This is a group plan that saves $545,000 without laying off firefighters and, I want to add, increasing coverage in the Belltown, Glenbrook and Turn of River districts," Malloy said.

    Volunteer chiefs, however, are skeptical and intend to present a counter proposal within the next few weeks.

    No changes are expected for Springdale, which already is staffed by Stamford Fire & Rescue firefighters, or the Long Ridge Fire Company, which gets city funding but is not staffed by city employees.

    If the departments are not unified, there would have to be layoffs in all of the fire departments because there is not enough money in the budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1 to continue operating as they have, Malloy said.

    Under Malloy's plan, employees of the Belltown, Glenbrook and Turn of River fire departments would work for Stamford Fire & Rescue and would be covered under the same union contract as the firefighters downtown.

    Bill Callion, director of public safety, health and welfare, and Stamford Fire & Rescue Chief Robert McGrath met with the fire union yesterday to create an interim agreement that will remain until the city conducts a strategic study of fire services that might prompt additional changes.

    Fire union President Brendan Keatley said the plan would help get the departments through budget cuts and keep paid firefighters employed. Keatley said the plan did not violate the contract.

    "The city's fire service budget has a huge cut in it this year, and I have to do whatever I can do to avoid people being out of work come July 1," he said. "I don't think this is the best plan for the city, but it's the best alternative."

    The volunteer chiefs would retain oversight of volunteers and continue to receive city funding for gasoline and operating expenses.

    Paid firefighters would be assigned to fire trucks and engines when responding to calls, reducing the number of staffed apparatus from 15 to 13.

    Fire marshals would continue to have jurisdiction over their districts but would work out of the government center and report to Chief Fire Marshal Barry Callahan.

    Response times, oversight and management should improve, Malloy said.

    The new system mirrors recommendations from a 1995 fire protection study commissioned by the city. The study concluded Stamford's system is distressed, with understaffed volunteer fire departments. It called for redistributing Stamford Fire & Rescue firefighters to the volunteer departments as a cost-effective way to improve public safety.

    Volunteer chiefs said the new system violates agreements they have with the city that give them the authority to hire and deploy their paid firefighters. The five volunteer companies are autonomous under the city Charter and have their own ways of staffing their firehouses and responding to calls.

    Malloy agreed the reorganization would require the city to terminate management agreements with each department, but he said those would be terminated anyway because the city cannot afford the manpower prescribed by them.

    "My hands are tied," Malloy said. "We've got to cut spending by $545,000 and it's got to be real."

    Attempts over the last 10 years to give the city more control over the volunteer departments failed.

    Malloy issued a statement Wednesday evening saying the plan was developed by Callion in consultation with fire officials. But the volunteer chiefs said they were informed of the changes and were not a part of the decision-making.

    "We had one prior meeting with him where he just put this on our laps and (said) 'This is how we are going to do it' and he just wanted our input," Turn of River Fire Chief Frank Jacobellis said.

    Springdale Fire Chief Shawn Fahan said he questioned Callion on how the plan would save the city $545,000 but was never given an answer.

    "They're still employing the same people, they're just sending them to different buildings," he said.

    Belltown Fire Chief John Didelot said the volunteer chiefs were not given anything in writing outlining the reorganization.

    The chiefs said they left the meeting unclear about who would supervise the paid firefighters at their volunteer companies. The paid staff at the volunteer companies now report to the volunteer chiefs.

    "No official answers have been given to a lot of the questions, yet," Jacobellis said.

    Malloy said some of the responsibilities might be shared.

    "Those issues have to be worked out," he said.

    Callion said it will not be a major change because he is ultimately responsible for all fire service in the city - paid and volunteer.

    "The buck stops here," he said.

    Didelot is working with Glenbrook Fire Chief Frank Passero to develop an alternative plan they hope to present to Callion within the next couple of weeks.

    "It's no mystery that Stamford Fire & Rescue is overstaffed, and it's no mystery that the volunteer companies are understaffed," Didelot said. "No one is questioning the over and the under, we're questioning the implementation of getting the two of them together and trying to get it together in 30 days."

    Jacobellis said he favors changes that save taxpayers' money but said Turn of River wants to maintain control over the paid firefighters working there. Having two chiefs -Êone for the volunteers and one for the paid firefighters -Êwouldn't work, he said.

    "A fire scene is confusing as it is. It's organized chaos is what it is," Jacobellis said. "If you've got people not listening to orders you're going to have people get hurt."

    Callion said that concern is unwarranted because two or three departments frequently respond to the same scene "and you don't hear yelling and screaming."

    If the leaders of the departments set an example of working together the rank-and-file will follow suit, Callion said.

    "If the leaders are positive, the team is positive," he said.

    Didelot said assigning firefighters to specific equipment limits firefighters' abilities to respond to calls and could jeopardize public safety.

    "Employees at the firehouse need to be able to take the apparatus as needed to an incident." he said. "You can't just assign a firefighter to one piece of apparatus, and leave all the rest in the firehouse, when the incident calls for a different piece of apparatus."

    As for Malloy's assertion that response times would improve, Jacobellis said it's unlikely.

    "I don't see any changes in response times," he said. "They are still going to be at the same station. They are still going to be going through the same traffic."

    Fahan, the Springdale chief, said the plan would create more tension between the volunteers and paid firefighters, and sharing equipment would lengthen response times.

    "I think the reorganized plan is going to be disorganized," he said.
    Copyright © 2007, Southern Connecticut Newspapers, Inc.



    How does Stamford currently operate thier fire service?

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    Quote Originally Posted by FFEMT99 View Post

    How does Stamford currently operate thier fire service?
    You heard of the Hatfields and McCoys?

    Here is a run down as I understand it:

    The city has six fire dept's, one is all career and 5 combo depts.

    Stamford Fire and Rescue (All career)

    The combo depts refer to themselves as "The Big 5"
    Long Ridge which has two stations
    Turn of River which has two stations
    Belltown
    Glenbrook
    Springdale (which is staffed 24/7 with a SFRD engine and personnel )

    TOR, Belltown and Glenbrook have paid personnel who are in the union (with SFRD) but under a separate contract. They also hire off of the test the city gives.

    Long Ridge has a separate agreement with the city, get funding from the city but do everything on their own. Their paid people are not in the union with SFRD plus TOR, Belltown and Glenbrook.



    And thats my understanding of how Stamford operates.

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    Cool Malloy unites Fire Services

    You have got to br kidding Malloy... Seems like if you are trying to save the City 545,000 you should look at cutting 3 out of the 4 Asst. Supt. of Schools that Joshua Star has hired... Plus seriously looking at all the PERKS that he receives... With his salary to increase to almost a Quarter of a Million Dollars is disgusting.
    The Mayor is obviously getting what he wants.... It has been a know fact for years that he is against ALL Volunteer Firefighters.. But no problem keep on increasing the Taxes for all the people that work and live here... while giving all the "BIG CORPORATIONS" thier big tax breaks.
    Lets play scare tactics and intimidation with the Volunteer Fire Companys and give them Pink Slips... Jeoperdize Public Safety of the community by Laying off Firefighters...
    And to think that your Board that you yourself have appointed to Office voted on giving you all Pay Raises... Way to go Mayor Malloy knowing that this would up your Pension even more being that this would be your last term in Office.
    SHAME ON YOU Malloy.
    There are plenty of other ways to save money for the city.
    Lets start by giving out more Traffic Tickets for those People who still decide to Drive while talking on thier Cell Phones.

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    Thumbs down

    Quote Originally Posted by 990230 View Post
    The Mayor is obviously getting what he wants.... It has been a know fact for years that he is against ALL Volunteer Firefighters.. But no problem keep on increasing the Taxes for all the people that work and live here... while giving all the "BIG CORPORATIONS" thier big tax breaks.
    Lets play scare tactics and intimidation with the Volunteer Fire Companys and give them Pink Slips... Jeoperdize Public Safety of the community by Laying off Firefighters...

    So the mayor is anti-volunteer but he is laying off paid firefighters? Please explain how that is anti-volunteer, seems like he is anti-paid to me.

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    Well the layoffs are official now. As of today, July 12th, 5 firefighters have been laid off. The layoffs came from Belltown and Glenbrook. I find it insane that the city could not find any other way to "save" money. What the city should have done was lay off the firefighters from Stamford Fire Rescue since they just hired 16 guys and save the jobs of the guys who have been on for 6+ years. This whole plan is not about saving money it's about control. And Brendan Keatley the Union President is not going to do a damn thing to save their jobs since he could care less about the combination departments and their small-minded and narrow-minded chiefs.

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    Great point, small minded volly fire chiefs. They are the ones who cannot see the big picture, providing equal service to all of stamford. The mayor is right by trying to combine all these little kingdoms into one proffesional (and i didn't say career) department. A department that will provide more than just one person on an ems call, 12 or more on a report of a fire, etc...

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    Were they part of a union?

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    It's funny since 4 out of the 5 combination depts and the all paid downtown section are all part of the same union. And the paper does not print the full stories. The city is strong arming the combination departments to be taken over when they have no say in how that is going to happen. Would you want someone coming into your department and telling you how things are going to be and you have no input? I don't think so. It is not the chiefs that are the problems, it is the city and the top Stamford Fire officials who are trying to take over the combination departments. If you knew the real details you would be thinking completely differently about this situation.

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    Fact: Four firefighters on a rig 24/7 is better then 3 or 2 firefighters on a rig depending on time.

    " 'Volunteers' and 'guarantee' don't really go together. Having a set number of firefighters to respond to a call, you can't argue with that,"
    -Edward Rondano, President of the Glennbrook fire dept (who is not a resident of Stamford) 6/29/07 Stamford Advocate

    "The loss of two paid firefighters leaves the Glenbrook firehouse, "not functionable," said volunteer firefighter Lt. Troy Jones, a six-year veteran.
    Down to seven career firefighters, only two will be on duty on daytime shifts, and one at night and on weekends, he said.
    Jones said having Stamford Fire & Rescue firefighters would have increased manpower responding to emergency calls, especially during the day, when volunteers are scarce." "The numbers aren't there," he said. "You can't function with one guy on a rig. And in the daytime, you only get two or three people able to respond, versus 10 to 12."

    5 paid city firefighters are laid off - The Stamford Advocate 7/12/07


    Fact: NO firefighters (SFRD, BELLTOWN and GLENBROOK) had to be laid off. The city made this clear, the volunteers rejected it.

    Some people(engine62ff) want to see the layoffs come from SFRD as opposed to belltown or glenbrook.

    I ask why should anyone get laid off?

    Why would any firefighter be opposed to an increase in response levels?

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    What the paper doesn't tell you is that they would be moving guys around and adding officers positions at all the combination houses. Layoffs did not have to happen and everyone knows that. The city is full of crap and the plan to merge the departments is something the combination departments want a say in but the city, the UNION and Stamford Fire are forcing a plan and saying this is the plan take it or leave it, if you dont like it screw your department your guys are getting laid off. Fair? I think not. If anyone knew the real story and not the fake distorted crap they publish in the advocate you would realize that there is a problem. But until then I am going to continue to tell the truth.

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    Default Misrepresentation

    Quote Originally Posted by Engine62FF View Post
    What the paper doesn't tell you is that they would be moving guys around and adding officers positions at all the combination houses. Layoffs did not have to happen and everyone knows that. The city is full of crap and the plan to merge the departments is something the combination departments want a say in but the city, the UNION and Stamford Fire are forcing a plan and saying this is the plan take it or leave it, if you dont like it screw your department your guys are getting laid off. Fair? I think not. If anyone knew the real story and not the fake distorted crap they publish in the advocate you would realize that there is a problem. But until then I am going to continue to tell the truth.

    More mis information E62FF. If they are moving guys around, how are they adding officer positions. You and your cohorts "are the problem" Stop hiding behind your computer keyboard, and accuse the union president to his face. Be a man. Get your facts straight, before you misrepresent.

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    E62 -

    You have mentioned the real story/real details/the truth in your posts. However, you have yet to state some additional info that has not made it to the papers.

    I have some knowledge of this system, but am not sure of the additional story that is out there?

    It would also help if you clarified your relationship here. Are you one of the guys laid off? (or one that could be laid off)?

    Looking forward to learning more.

    Squad

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    Engine62FF,

    Can you tell me what the real story is? I would love to hear it.

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    Engine62 -

    Where did you go? I was hoping for the real story by now. Perhaps you are busy getting your "facts" together?

    Your audience is larger than ever now (most of the Local 786 membership).

    Please do not disappoint.......

    Eagerly waiting.....

    PS - Special meetings of the Union were also just posted for next week. Hopefully you will be there. It would be far more productive for you to discuss your version of the "real story" in that forum.

    See you there!

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    Thumbs up

    I am aware most of the 786 members heard my post and I am glad. Maybe I will attend the meeting and voice my opinion. I have also heard there are threats made against me so I am not about to have a union president get in my face over an opinion I posted online.

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    I would not worry about any threats. I hardly think anyone would risk their jobs over such a trivial matter as an internet posting. But if it really is a concern then you should stay happilly anonymous as you have done so far. We all know that you feel bad for the 5 laid off brothers and would not want anyone else to be out of work over this stressful situation.

    Stay strong brother

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    Quote Originally Posted by 13victor View Post
    We all know that you feel bad for the 5 laid off brothers and would not want anyone else to be out of work over this stressful situation.
    Actually Engine62ff said in his first post in this thread "What the city should have done was lay off the firefighters from Stamford Fire Rescue since they just hired 16 guys and save the jobs of the guys who have been on for 6+ years."

    So pretty much he is a scumbag. I highly doubt he is a paid firefighter in Stamford or anywhere else. I'd be willing to bet he is stamford volley just trying to rile up the Union guys.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DarkLight View Post
    I'd be willing to bet he is stamford volley just trying to rile up the Union guys.
    So I decided to check out his public profile and look what I found. Check it out for yourselves.
    Attached Files Attached Files

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    Quote Originally Posted by Engine62FF View Post
    I am aware most of the 786 members heard my post and I am glad. Maybe I will attend the meeting and voice my opinion. I have also heard there are threats made against me so I am not about to have a union president get in my face over an opinion I posted online.
    Well Engine 62 if you are comfortable with all your "REAL FACTS" you won't have a problem presenting them to the union membership. That is if you really are a union member. You are the one who called out the union president, now you don't want to confront him? I don't understand. Once again you are showing your true colors..."YELLOW". If you won't come out with the REAL FACTS, and stop hiding behind your keyboard, then no one will be able credit you with factual information. Please enlighten everyone with the truth, or please mark your posts as fiction, not fact.

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