Monday night, the East Contra Costa Fire Protection District comes full circle where they will decide whether to move forward or not with a plan to open a fourth fire station and explore a 2016 ballot initiative.
The meeting will shape the future of the fire district based off a self-appointed multi-jurisdictional task force who worked to seek solutions for the Districts financial and service model issues. The task force took the initiative to involve city’s and the county after the fire board twice failed on find funding relief and had little movement in both a short-term and long-term solution.
Under the plan, the Task Force proposed to seek $2.2 million in funding between the ECCFPD ($873,978), City of Brentwood ($666,000), City of Oakley ($382,202) and Contra Costa County ($311,617) to re-open a previous closed fire station as a stop gap until more long-term fund could be made available through a ballot. The station most likely to be re-opened is Knightsen Station 94.
According to Brentwood City Manager Gus Vina, since the opening of the fourth station will most likely occur in March/April 2016, there is a projected savings of $372,000 which will be applied to the costs
associated with the master planning and 2016 ballot initiative exploration.
After a presentation on November 2, the ECCFPD Board accepted the recommendation in a 6-2 vote. At November 10 meetings with the City of Brentwood and City of Oakley, both councils approved the recommendation unanimously without terms or conditions.
At the November 17 Contra Costa County Board of Supervisor meeting, the task force recommendations were approved on a 4-1 vote with Supervisor Andersen voting against the proposal. The Board of Supervisors also added a number of conditions which they said should have already been implemented years ago.
The Board of Supervisor recommendations include:
- The fourth station commissioned be the Knightsen station per the Fire Chief’s recommendation
- That as part of exploring a 2016 Ballot Initiative, such initiative would include
- The ECCFPD become an independent district with an elected board
- The ECCFPD change its name to make it clear it is not a “county” agency
- That a citizen’s oversight committee be established to oversee implementation of changes as a result of a successful revenue measure.
If you go:
Meeting begins at 6:30 pm at 3231 Main Street in Oakley. (Oakley City Hall)
Task Force Members
The Task Force, who had been meeting since June, was comprised of City Managers, fire chiefs, and local stakeholders. The members include:
- Gustavo (“Gus”) Vina, Brentwood City Manager
- Bryan Montgomery, Oakley City Manager
- Tomi Riley, Chief of Staff for Supervisor Piepho
- Krystal Hinojosa, Chief of Staff for Supervisor Mitchoff
- Vince Wells, President, IAFF Local 1230
- Gil Guerrero, Vice President, IAFF Local 1230 and ECCFPD Fire Captain
- Bob May, Representative, IAFF, Local 1230 and ECCFPD Fire Engineer
- Jeff Carman, Contra Costa County Fire Protection District Fire Chief
- Brian Helmick, ECCFPD Battalion Chief
- Hugh Henderson, ECCFPD Fire Chief
Editors Notes – Other Items in Play
- We are hearing at least one Board Member are a “no vote” based on the County Supervisor recommendations.
- The City of Brentwood is in the process of appointing members of its ECCFPD Seats.
- The Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors can replace its two representatives at anytime depending on tonight’s vote.
- the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors unanimously last month to begin a process to detach six overlapping tax rate areas by the Discovery Bay Community Services District and the Byron-Bethany Irrigation District, a total of $684,246 could be potentially reallocated to one or more of the other affected taxing agencies. If the process goes smooth, the District could get a full 100% of that money or a portion within 6-months.