Cochise County Tea Party

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FRY Fire Department Mo. Mtg...Interesting....


Fry Fire Department Monthly board Meeting - first attempt so may not have gotten it all....highlighted a couple of items


FFD = Fry Fire District

FFC = Fry Fire Chief


By way of information and introduction - The Fire Fry Board is voluntary, made up of 5 members.


Reports included – Fire Chief, financial report, review of warrants issued during the past month, application for Governor’s Highway Safety Grant.


Fire Chief’s Report – There is approximately $300,000 on federal community block grant money available.  The BOS has $226,000 worth of requests throughout the county and FF has requested $51,000 for one of the fire stations.


Upgraded/advanced the physical fitness requirements for fire fighters, based on an independent study assessment – which cost the FFD $10,000.


The FFD was recognized as best of the best – 1% of 1% of fire stations in Arizona.  This is a first for Arizona. 


FFC identified the number of calls FFD was involved with:


138 FFD only; 556 SV; 35 assists outside FFD


Auto Aid (these are agreement whereby fire stations backup/assist other fire stations in the area – SV, Palominas, Bisbee).


204 FFD assists to SV

42 SV assists to FFD


New Radio system atop the Mule Mountains will save about $7000 in phone costs to FFD.  The radio system was provided by an $80,000 federal grant.  The phone coverage will be from Whetstone through SV to Palominas.  The antenna meets the 2013 FCC requirements.  The directional antenna is stronger, but does not cover Bisbee.  Bisbee, FFD will have to use the County communications system.


FFD section budgets due on Friday; final budget to be announced June 2011. 


Legislation FFD is following (did you know we have two lobbyist in Phoenix?) 


SB 1218 and SB 1361 – from the bill:

6.      Declares that any surplus in the district’s Fund for which it was collected for the succeeding fiscal year, and after the subtraction of accounts payable and encumbrances, is used to reduce the property levy in the following tax year.


SB 1279 –  from the Bill.  Apparently before allowed a consolidated fire district to retain from both (which could be $300,000 from each = $600,000)


Prohibits a fire district or consolidated fire district from receiving more than $400,000 in fire district assistance tax monies, beginning in FY 2013, without regard to whether that fire district is located in more than one county.


SB 1333 – Annexation.  Sierra Vista….I’m still reading…it was sponsored by Antenori, Gowan and Stevens…has to do with City Sierra Vista trying to annex more and more county.... ”stuck in committee”


SCR 1039 1018          Amends the Constitution to only allow 1% or 2%

Would circumvent Prop 13….Still reading….but looks like it “is” Prop. 13


HB 2153 would provide the homeowner a CHOICE whether to install residential sprinklers.  Governor signed.  FFD opposed (???)


Retirement Programs – FFD the employee pays 2.5% and the district (read taxpayer) pays 20%.  It is 65% funded.  FFD wants 100% so they can include payment of sick leave, vacation, etc…

State Legislatures Retirement plan gives them a full pension after 3 terms.


Budget is the first priority for our legislature.


Bisbee will be losing $250,000 in revenue sharing.


Every year FFD requests approval from the board to apply for the Governor’s Highway Safety Grant – board approved


FFC requested approval to purchase three (3) $4200 blood IVs (this is above his spending level of $10,000).  Stated that they have an 85% success rate for IV insertion (no one asked how many patients they assisted or why SV didn’t purchase/or could SV purchase)


Palominas Fire Station – Chief Miller has been assisting for the past several weeks in the absence of a fire chief.  He’s suggested three solutions – hire a chief; contract the service with a private company or contract with FFD.


Medical Marijuana was discussed, and the board asked whether FFD had a policy – yes they do.  Interesting, the comment was made that a fire fighter would need a prescription, just like for other meds….


I have a copy of the budget and warrants, which I'm familiarizing myself with. 


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Comment by j fredenburgh on April 16, 2011 at 8:08pm
Missed the april meeting to make the CCTP meeting, but will be back on tap in May.  Finding out the the School Board and fire departments/districts have a say in their budgets with the BoS (per pat call at the $/13 CCTP meeting) makes me want to attend and ask more questions!
Comment by j fredenburgh on March 26, 2011 at 1:36pm
Good, was wondering!  I do have senior moments....but....
Comment by Joanne C Daley on March 26, 2011 at 9:42am
I posted the "business card" comment but don' know how it got to your response....  it's just the NING more thing for the list  
Comment by j fredenburgh on March 26, 2011 at 7:42am

Still gathering information.  Based on their salary budget, the "mean" salary is about $50,000.  They have about 50 fire fighers and about 5 staff.  Overtime is budgeted at about $8000 per fire fighter based on the information I have.  Plan to attend the next meeting and ask about union and also how they intend to fund pensions (change the formula, increase the tax rate).  Want to ask Pat Call.


On legislators, still isn't as clear as it seems it should be...


another subject: 

Now you can order business cards with your name on them and the title of "Non-Profit Blogger"  - I DIDN'T POST THAT NOTE????

Comment by j fredenburgh on March 21, 2011 at 5:18pm

Fry Fire - don't know, am checking the number  of employees also since I have their budget for compensation.  Don't think they are a union.  The 100%...yup that's my question are they going to fund.


Legislators - I believe it is for them....but don't know if the pension is based on their salary, service, etc...checking also.


Was eye opening...I just listened this go-around...but have lots of questions before the next meeting and at the meeting.  Will keep you posted via "my blog"....


Now you can order business cards with your name on them and the title of "Non-Profit Blogger"

Comment by Joanne C Daley on March 21, 2011 at 5:11pm

Is the Fry Fire Dept in a union??  Where do the pension funds go? is it a special account at the Az Retirement System or do they pay directly into the ARS?

When I left ACE 11 years ago they were just raising the health ins premium to employee pay 20% of premium, they matched 401K up to a percentage of salary and I think it was 10%,  we got 14 personal days--those were sick or vacation or whatever, but we could accumulate them from year to year.  So I guess my question is what does 100% mean and where is the money going to come from?  Does that mean that our property taxes have to be raised by 35%( for the FFD) in order to fund their retirement?  That won't fly!


State Legislatures Retirement plan gives them a full pension after 3 terms.  who gets a full pension of what amount??  If it is the legislators I don't have a problem with that because they get paid peanuts to be our legislators but I don't think they get the pension until they reach 65 (maybe older by now) I think they have only gotten one raise by the taxpayers in the last 20 years and it was like $3,000 each.   You don't get rich serving for the State of AZ.



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