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Old 11-02-2012, 11:34   #26
JW1178
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I live in a small town. In the last year we have built a new fire station, built a new police station, got another fire truck for the larger new station, and replaced a LOT of sidewalks, oh, and built all new structures at the town park.

One would think the economy was booming.
I see that where I live, not really a small town though. Something I have noticed, the road starts to get rough. First, they go about fixing potholes and sealing cracks, which makes it just look like crap and even rougher at times. Then they re-pave the road. Then a year later, they decide to expand the road or so some other "improvement" and ends up repaving it again. All while messing up traffic for the construction.

I-75 through North Atlanta area. They had just repaved it with asphalt, rode real nice. Then they did a ton of construction and it looked as though they were going to expand it. What they did is made huge mess and expanded the shoulders a bunch, they turned it to the concrete surface, which is kind of in sections and rides rough. Then, most recently, they decided to reroute a small part of it.

Kind of like they remodeled the courthouse in my town while building the new one, and from what I could see, they finished the renovations just in time for the move to the new building. The new building is a great improvement, and I'm glad they built it, but why did they have to spend all that money on the old one that now sits vacant?

I think a lot of people see these things, even if they don't say much. I think more people are getting fed up with the govt. wasting our money.
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Old 11-02-2012, 11:35   #27
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Can't give people things then try and take them away. My BIL drives me crazy defending the Post Office. Most of it was Bush's fault.
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Old 11-02-2012, 11:50   #28
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Can't give people things then try and take them away. My BIL drives me crazy defending the Post Office. Most of it was Bush's fault.
Like hell you can't. Looks like we're gonna do just that.
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Old 11-02-2012, 11:57   #29
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I'm pulling for certified. Get your dept. back.
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Old 11-02-2012, 12:00   #30
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Then, the department accepted a grant to hire 14 full time employees.
This is the crazy thing that went wrong. Not too late to undo it. There are a lot of volunteer fire depts around my neck of the woods and they do just fine getting people to volunteer and raising money through local donations and some fund raisers like dinners and ice cream socials. Start accepting government grants and the volunteer system dies.
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Old 11-02-2012, 12:03   #31
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As an Adminstrator for an EMS taxing district I applaud you for stepping up to the plate AFTER the department is broke. If you were involved in the departments business in any way shape or form then you would have seen this coming years ago. As budgets increase and tax base decreases, we are faced with the task of providing our tax payers the premium level of service they expect for less and less money. When houses foreclose and businesses close, the tax dollars aren't getting paid.

Now you want an appointment to the board of directors so you can carry out your agenda of busting up the union, but not addressing the real problem of decreased revenue. I am not a union member and my department is not union. I am not sticking up for the leaders of your local dept but have they been educated on how to run a public safety service? Have they been to Executive Fire Officers school at the National Fire Academy? Or taken any kind of business management courses? You have an agenda that has no place in the operations of a public safety service. You intend to harm a service instead of trying to help it.

Where were you when the dept needed help with their budget? Where were you when they had a beef with the Chief or the board and decided to go union? Why aren't you at every board meeting asking questions and holding officials responsible? You chose not to be involved and now you want to head up the destruction of the department. They really appreciate your help.

I don't think you read well before posting. There has been no drop in revenue. This is the oil patch. My home value and the economy is as strong as ever. They're asking for more taxes.

This is a spending and union problem.

Some of us are out there working to pay taxes to fund these services. You expect me to attend every fire board meeting, every water board meeting and every city council meeting? I have a job to do.

But when you come to me and ask for $500 more I start paying attention.

As for whether or not I or my agenda belong on that board, I own a home that is in the upper 1% of assessments locally. I own a prime commercial site too. This affects me more than most. You're damn right my opinion matters.

My father was on this board and president of this board for many years when it was fiscally healthy, prior to the new paid employees and unionization. He's an accountant. Go figure.
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Old 11-02-2012, 12:04   #32
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Like hell you can't. Looks like we're gonna do just that.
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Old 11-02-2012, 12:05   #33
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This is the crazy thing that went wrong. Not too late to undo it. There are a lot of volunteer fire depts around my neck of the woods and they do just fine getting people to volunteer and raising money through local donations and some fund raisers like dinners and ice cream socials. Start accepting government grants and the volunteer system dies.


I agree. That was the tipping point. The board members who agreed to it need to be tarred and feathered.
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Old 11-02-2012, 12:06   #34
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I don't care if our ISO rating drops while we fix this. I'd rather pay Allstate than union idiots.
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Old 11-02-2012, 12:15   #35
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I don't care if our ISO rating drops while we fix this. I'd rather pay Allstate than union idiots.
Meaning of course that after you clean up the mess you and the community can work on improving the ISO rating, yes?
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Old 11-02-2012, 12:21   #36
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My city is all volunteer as well, and it probably will be for a long time to come. We have a referendum on this years election to bond $4million for new apparatus, which I will vote in favor of. We have a steady increase of tax revenue due to a ever expanding grand list, and a decrease in everyone's overall tax, so now is the time to get the equipment before it's desperately needed.
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Old 11-02-2012, 12:37   #37
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Meaning of course that after you clean up the mess you and the community can work on improving the ISO rating, yes?
Yes. If the rating drops while the department is taken back volunteer, so be it. The ISO rating hasn't increased since the union got involved, only the cost has.

I'm willing to pay allstate a little more in the meantime if that is even necessary. We had an excellent rating before, we'll get an excellent rating after.
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Old 11-02-2012, 12:44   #38
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To put it in perspective, what they want adds $500 to my property tax.

Screw em. They can collect unemployment. Call it retribution for destroying something that wasn't theirs to destroy. I can't wait to hear the whining.
Relax. A man like you can pay a tax like that.

If you don't like it, do something about it. Go out and find enough people like you to go to the polls and vote a different approach. If you're so hip on volunteer F.D., fine. Convince other people. Of course... if most of the voters are property owners who get all bent over the portion of their property tax that goes to fire services, then you'll get your way. If the majority of voters are not so inclined to go ballistic over such penny ante stuff, then you will have the happy opportunity to learn to accept what you cannot change. What's not to like about that? Hum?
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Old 11-02-2012, 12:54   #39
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Relax. A man like you can pay a tax like that.
...
I know CF, and yes he can pay a difference of $500 without even noticing..

I think that his concern is..
a) $500 increase now, but where does it end?
b) The principal of not having your basic self-interests held hostage by union influence when past history proves that the community can provide for itself without a "public service employee union".
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Old 11-02-2012, 13:00   #40
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The trick here is to not act on emotion and examine what has hapened.

Look at the rating your area has for insurance based on yoru current fire coverage, then look at what that rate will be when you go back to volunteer,

See what the difference in your Insurance will be each year, if it makes fiscal sense for you all to vote it down then do so.
If it is cheaper to pay the taxes use your best judgement..

I doubt you have a real union I am thinking your state is a right to work state.
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Old 11-02-2012, 13:02   #41
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Getting grant money is fine as long as its not abused . Biggest expense in any dept. is equipment. Our town turned all the responsibility and equipment over to the county which formed a county wide fire district in 1998.
We started with a 30x40 3 bay station built back in the 70's to a modern 50x50 2 bay( 4 doors drive thru ) station built in 2003 and we just added a 10x60 addition bay( 2 door drive thru) this year.

Since 1998 our volunteer station has grown substantially from a single 72 American LaFrance pumper and brush truck ( 80 dodge w/ 225 gal skid), 1000 gal tanker( 75 ford F700) to 2 pumpers( 1972 American LaFrance and 1999 Peirce), a 2500 gal tanker( 2007 KMC), brush truck( 2002 Chevy 4x4 3500w/400gal skid), Med Duty Equipment truck (2002 GMC W5500 w/ Hurst extraction eq : cutter, spreader, ram, and power unit w/ 2 tool connections. 9500wt Gen, porta lights, 6000psi Cascade system and various other items), a Chiefs truck ( 2002 4x4 3500 chevy w/ 10,000lbs winch) . We also just acquired 17 new sets of Turn out gear ( head to toe), 6 new Scott Air paks, 12 Scott upgraded paks, and a 6000 psi Compressor/ breathing air refill unit for our station. We also just upgraded 14 mobile radios to 800mkz (@ $3500 each) . Some of our equipment upgrades are due to grants, but the majority is from taxes accessed county wide. Our fire district has operated on the same millage rate for the past 14yrs, and we just asked for the 1st increase in millage since the county took over in 1998 and that was due to fuel cost and the match money required when equipment grants are acquired.

I've been in the fire service since 2001. I've been asked "why do I do it" and I reply, " someone has to or we would be in a world of **** when bad things happen" .
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Old 11-02-2012, 13:04   #42
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Relax. A man like you can pay a tax like that.

If you don't like it, do something about it. Go out and find enough people like you to go to the polls and vote a different approach. If you're so hip on volunteer F.D., fine. Convince other people. Of course... if most of the voters are property owners who get all bent over the portion of their property tax that goes to fire services, then you'll get your way. If the majority of voters are not so inclined to go ballistic over such penny ante stuff, then you will have the happy opportunity to learn to accept what you cannot change. What's not to like about that? Hum?

I take it you haven't read the whole thread.

Perhaps you'd like to send in my $500 additional tax? You'll receive the same value as me for it.
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Old 11-02-2012, 13:06   #43
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Yes. If the rating drops while the department is taken back volunteer, so be it. The ISO rating hasn't increased since the union got involved, only the cost has.

I'm willing to pay allstate a little more in the meantime if that is even necessary. We had an excellent rating before, we'll get an excellent rating after.
Probably not, ISO is a scam and once you lose a paid department look to see that rating screw you royally...Who do you think is employed to do the surveys???

Someone will drop a dime once your full time unit is disolved and that rating will go south.
It is based on where the water is, how many firefighters, type of equipment,, response times.... there is NO WAY a volunteer department can rate as good as a full time paid all else being equal.

Look here..
http://www.isomitigation.com/ppc/2000/ppc2005.html
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Old 11-02-2012, 13:06   #44
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I know CF, and yes he can pay a difference of $500 without even noticing..

I think that his concern is..
a) $500 increase now, but where does it end?
b) The principal of not having your basic self-interests held hostage by union influence when past history proves that the community can provide for itself without a "public service employee union".
I'd rather burn the $500 than pay it to the worthless union thugs
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Old 11-02-2012, 13:10   #45
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Probably not, ISO is a scam and once you lose a paid department look to see that rating screw you royally...Who do you think is employed to do the surveys???

Someone will drop a dime once your full time unit is disolved and that rating will go south.
It is based on where the water is, how many firefighters, type of equipment,, response times.... there is NO WAY a volunteer department can rate as good as a full time paid all else being equal.
We had an excellent rating as a volunteer department. It hasn't improved since becoming paid and unionized. The only thing that has changed are the expenses.

Yet interestingly enough the new chief is issuing all sorts of veiled threats about how the rating will drop and services will be less. We were fine before these THUGS came along. Where is their value?
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Old 11-02-2012, 13:11   #46
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Like hell you can't. Looks like we're gonna do just that.
Just to be clear, you can but prepare for a lot of *****ing. Good luck!
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Old 11-02-2012, 13:12   #47
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Let me add this about ISO ratings

10------bad ( basically save the chimney)

8-9 usual rating for rural area with no water
6-7 usual rating for rural area with water source ( hydrants)
5 -good rating municipality w/ water
4- very good rating municipality w/ water
3- very very good
2 -almost excellent
1 -outstanding , the best of the best
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Old 11-02-2012, 13:14   #48
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Originally Posted by certifiedfunds View Post
We had an excellent rating as a volunteer department. It hasn't improved since becoming paid and unionized. The only thing that has changed are the expenses.

Yet interestingly enough the new chief is issuing all sorts of veiled threats about how the rating will drop and services will be less. We were fine before these THUGS came along. Where is their value?
I doubt that, you may believe it but it is not true 15% of your score is based on firefighters in service. and a deduction will be made when /if you go to volunteer.

As far as unions go again your state is right to work? how is this happening?
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Old 11-02-2012, 13:14   #49
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Originally Posted by Mayhem like Me View Post
The trick here is to not act on emotion and examine what has hapened.

Look at the rating your area has for insurance based on yoru current fire coverage, then look at what that rate will be when you go back to volunteer,

See what the difference in your Insurance will be each year, if it makes fiscal sense for you all to vote it down then do so.
If it is cheaper to pay the taxes use your best judgement..

I doubt you have a real union I am thinking your state is a right to work state.
It's a real union. "Firefighters Local #####" I believe. Was just on the web page.

Once a union is involved,it will continue to grow and grow in terms of cost and everytime they ask for more tax money they'll issue the same veiled threats if we don't give it.
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Old 11-02-2012, 13:19   #50
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I doubt that, you may believe it but it is not true 15% of your score is based on firefighters in service. and a deduction will be made when /if you go to volunteer.

As far as unions go again your state is right to work? how is this happening?
The rating has not changed from volunteer to paid.

Right to work doesn't mean no unions. I don't follow.

As I understand it most of the paid unionized employees came from the volunteer force. Others left volunteer service.
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