City Council takes a step towards fire department enlargement

February 23, 2002
Santa Paula News

The Santa Paula Fire Department took a step towards enlargement when the City Council approved the recommended salary range and job description for three new full-time firefighters that hopefully will be aboard this summer.

By Peggy KellySanta Paula TimesThe Santa Paula Fire Department took a step towards enlargement when the City Council approved the recommended salary range and job description for three new full-time firefighters that hopefully will be aboard this summer.The council gave its approval at a January meeting.It was late last year when the City Council, in a surprise move, approved hiring three more full-time firefighters so each shift would have engines staffed with three public safety workers.In November during the budget hearing, the council approved and appropriated funding for same for the department to be able to have three full-time firefighters on duty around the clock.
But its all not fire fighting, according to the report on the issue submitted by Chief Paul Skeels, now Interim City Manager.Not only do firefighters respond to fires and accident scenes, but they also respond as EMTs to give preliminary treatment to victims of accidents or having a medical emergency. In addition, firefighters act as inspectors for property and businesses to ensure compliance with fire and safety laws and regulations; responds to citizen questions and complaints; provides fire and life safety education programs; and performs enforcement assignments for fire prevention.It will cost the city an estimated $163,096 for the salaries and benefits for the three new firefighters, which includes costs for uniforms, safety equipment, training and overtime expenses.The goal is to have the new firefighters trained and ready for duty by July 1. The SPFD also has a full-time assistant chief as well as the chief and present six full-time firefighters.



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