Mass. fire chief returns to duty after medical leave

Chief Scott Jepson has served as a town firefighter since 1992

By Michael Holtzman
The Herald News

SOMERSET, Mass. — Veteran Fire Chief Scott Jepson has been absent for medical reasons from the fire department the past two weeks but is expected to return.

“I’ve spoken to the chief and he’s authorized me to say he is out on medical leave,” Town Administrator Richard Brown said Friday.

Brown cited state personnel confidentiality laws and did not provide details beyond that.

“I expect him to return to work soon,” Brown said. He declined to give a time frame and it was unclear if he knew one.

Jepson, a town firefighter since 1992, is in his ninth year as fire chief. He also serves as the town’s Emergency Management Agency director.

Deputy Fire Chief Paul Paquette, who is in charge of inspections and fire prevention, has been serving in those capacities in Jepson’s absence, and will continue until he returns, Brown said.

He praised Paquette and the department of 31 members for its response to Jepson’s absence.

“I think we have a wonderfully talented fire department and a great command staff,” Brown said. “I think they’ll deal with this adjustment in staffing, and I’m not worried about it.”

He called the firefighters and staff a “supportive department.”

Copyright 2016 The Herald News

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