2-17-11 Fire Task Force Mtg.

Posted by MJ

Here is the agenda for tonight's initial meeting of the Fire Task Force talked about ealier this week here: Fire Task Force.


Anonymous said...

A friend of mine lives in the town and just got his yearly tax bill:


I thought volunteers were free???
According to the above figures an average taxpayer in the city pays about $496 a year for a paid fire department, a difference of $206. If my friend lived in the city and they had volunteers instead of a paid department he would save an extra 56 cents a day! Also adding to that cost of these “free” services is the recruitment and retention incentives for volunteers. Volunteers also enjoy a length of service pension funded by the taxpayers. Factor in your ISO insurance rating to this cost. Businesses in the town pay a much higher premium for insurance than City businesses.


Have a heart attack in the town you will wait an average of 9+ minutes, at best, for a volunteer to arrive, and usually that is in a pickup truck, you will then wait another 5+ minutes for the ambulance to arrive with basic EMT’s that do not carry drugs. They in turn call Rural Metro Ambulance that have paramedics, but by then you are dead or close. If you live in the city you will wait an average of 3 minutes for paramedics to arrive. I know, this will never happen to you, it only happens to other people. 3000+ city residents called 911 last year.

Big fire in the town yesterday, made the t.v. news and the papers, the house was destroyed. The city had a fire on Niagara St. last week. You did not hear about it? I guess it was not newsworthy; the house had minimal damage because of the less than 3 minute response time. You will never hear about the numerous house fires that are put out quickly every year and keeps the houses on the tax rolls. You will hear about the towns though, because more often than not the house is totaled.

These are all facts I have presented. What are your facts? Before you start with the standard “Delphi is shrinking” response, Delphi contributes about 3% to the City of Lockport’s tax revenue.

Give me real facts and figures what the taxpayer will save and lose.

Anonymous said...

You will not get intelligent responses. The people who are against the city fire department dislike them for personal reasons. All you are going to get is “we don’t need a Cadillac service” or “Lockport is shrinking”. You will not get facts to back up their arguments. Keep up the good work by providing us with the unbiased facts.

jaws said...

While anonymous3:18 may have valid points....comparing a trailer fire in the Village and a house fire literally up the street from the LKPT FD is hardly a fair comparison.

Anonymous said...

Ok, how about Kitchen World then.

Anonymous said...

and does that $495 a year include all the pension fund payments and life time health insurance payments for retired fireman?

Anonymous said...

Is the $496 a household or a person for the city?
And you be9ing a firefighter really should know the difference between a trailer fire and a house fire.
And yes, the "Delphi is shrinking" is still a valid statement. They contribute 3% NOW, but when they were thriving they WERE paying a lot more which allowed the city to stay in the unsustainable mode of keeping a full time fire dept. I think the mayor said the other day Delphi was assessed at something like $80M and is now assessed at $15M! Someone here can probably tell me how much of a tax difference that is, I'll bet it wouod be close to the cost of the dept!

Anonymous said...

The argument is not about trailer fires vs. house fires and it is not meant to pit volunteers vs. paid. The argument is about response times and why you do not hear about the numerous house fires in the city every year, simply because they are not newsworthy. Because of the city fire departments fast response times, the fires are put out before they turn into headlines. The city fire department performs its job consistently and professionally year after year but is always the first to be blamed for the city’s leader’s mismanagement.

You are kidding yourselves if you think your taxes will go down if the city went to a volunteer force.

Hypothetically, let’s say Mr. Chapman was an alderman 4 years ago and got his wish of a volunteer force:

In 2008 there was a house fire on Vine Street, the city fire department arrived in 3 minutes to a screaming mother, and a little girl was trapped inside the house. Firefighters searched for her and pulled her out alive, but unconscious and she made a complete recovery. What would have happened if the city fire department was a volunteer department for that fire? I think you know the answer. Is a child’s life really worth the small, if any, savings the taxpayer will save? I am not being dramatic; lives and property are saved every year because of a paid fire department and their fast response times.

Anonymous said...

If this response time is so important to your fellow firefighters then why do over a third of them (if this fact isn't right please correct it)not live in the city?
One reason the lfd is blamed a lot is the number of grievances you file. If you would recognize the city is in trouble, everyones budget is shrinking, and you must too - it would help. There has to be some ideas that you guys could propose which would eliminate ot, such as lower minimum staffing but have 'call-in's' for major fires (or accept volunteer help), change your scheduling to get rid of the long shifts, or other ideas which you might have.

Rocketboy said...

"If this response time is so important to your fellow firefighters then why do over a third of them (if this fact isn't right please correct it)not live in the city?"

Maybe response time isn't as important to them. Just like to people who live in California, being in an earthquake zone is not as important to them. Or like people who live in the Southtowns who are in lake effect snow areas. Or people who live in New Orleans that are below the waterline. To others, response time is important, earthquakes are important, snow is important, floods are important, and they can live where they want.

When the firefighers have so many days off, they think nothing of calling in sick so they can have some me time, so the taxpayers end up overpaying for the labor, that's a problem.

Or when every truck gets dispatched when there's a low speed non-injury accident between a car backing up and a parked car, there's a problem. Send the police, and if needed, the ambulance (no harm in being careful, but if it's reported as non-injury, I would leave it in the officer who is on the scene to determine if it's worthwhile to call someone in.). You don't need a firetruck on scene.

MJ said...

While response times are important to people return on investment is probably front and center. More people will take the safety in thier finances over the chance of a fire which is less tangible.

A lot of government policies have put older areas at a competitive disatvantage to newer areas.

Anonymous said...

If Chapman wants to do a cost/benefit analysis, why not have the firemen do a cost/benefit analysis every time they get to a fire? Run the numbers through the computer and see if it's worth saving whoever is inside, or if it's worth trying to put the fire out.
It is about people's lives, and with protection, and I am fine with paying even more tax if it means we have happy, dedicated, well-paid firemen. Wasn't so long ago people thought of firemen as heroic--why the change?

Anonymous said...

Fireman are heroic there isn't any doubt... Ohh, that includes volunteer fireman too.

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