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Fire Service Staffing

State fire association official believes improvements are needed but proposed regulations are not achievable for small departments
Voters in Missoula approved a fire levy to increase staffing, purchase equipment and build a new fire station
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Alexandria Interim Fire Chief Jim Schwartz stated that staff are reviewing years of call data to assess the impact on neighborhoods
Webster Groves and its union firefighters have settled a long-running dispute over staffing requirements and OT costs
Survey respondents share their experiences with staffing stressors
Auditors said they found that fire department overtime exceeded what was covered in the 2023 budget by almost $253,000 as of Sept. 27
Leaders, we must stay focused the myriad issues impacting our membership, even those that can feel distant from day-to-day operations
Mayor Eric Adams has announced a 5% budget reduction and directed uniformed agencies to reduce overtime costs
The union filed an unfair labor practices charge, claiming that West Chester “unilaterally changed the terms and conditions of employment”
“We’re still having issues with the administration on calculations,” said Gary Firefighters Union 359 President Larry Tillman II
Lynn’s city council approved of the funds to help with staffing as some firefighters are being treated for injuries or work-related illnesses
The Portland City Council’s provision is part of a labor deal to increase pay for firefighters forced to work mandatory overtime due to short staffing
Decatur Fire & Rescue Lt. Michael Leonard is pushing back after being accused of mishandling a conflict with a crewmember over mandatory OT
Spokane FD overtime allowances were doubled in the budget, although the city hopes the new positions will reduce the need for unbudgeted OT
Hampton Fire and Rescue may face citations if the inquiry determines it violated occupational safety and health regulations
“We have firefighters that are working 96-hour shifts,” said Isaac McLennan of the Portland Firefighter’s Association
“For the third time, we told you we are out of service,” an EMT is heard saying on a recording of Baltimore City Fire Department radio traffic
The cost of overtime in 2021 broke a department record, and the city continues to grapple with understaffing on shifts
Gadsden Fire Department members said in the original complaint that the city violated overtime pay requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act
Glynn County needs at least 37 firefighters and EMS providers per shift, said Chief R.K. Jordan. “With 31 people per shift right now, that’s six overtime shifts a day”
“His hair was up, and it was legal,” said District Fire Chief Terrance Jones, a spokesman for the Brotherhood of Firefighters
Spokane’s fire union cites staffing shortages from retirements and departures, plus an uptick in sick leave from COVID-19 cases
In a near equal split, 52% of respondents say their department does not have residency restrictions, while 48% say their department does
The numbers underscore the toll the coronavirus is taking on staffing amid a battle over the city mandate that employees receive vaccinations
DFR is hoping to cut down on burnout, response times and overtime with single-role paramedics
The decision by Anchorage Fire Chief Doug Schrage drew criticism from the local fire union leaders who raised concerns about public safety
In the past year, Polk County first responders have been asked to pick up 4,495 mandatory OT shifts, totaling 89,434 hours