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Saturday, June 21, 2008

At Face Value

What the Citizens of Roanoke don't understand is that by taking Engine 13 out of service now, the department is setting up them up to make them feel better when they remove Engine 9 from service.

When the new Station 5 opens, it will be a combination of the current Station 5 and 9 (currently housing Engine 5, Engine 9, and Medic 9 collectively). When the combination occurs, Ladder 13 will be moved to the new station and one of the engines will move back to Station 13. The FD will come out smelling like roses. What the Citizens don't understand is that it will be smoke and mirrors. We all understand that.

Chief Hoback asked me if I knew why Ladder 9 was moved to Station 13 becoming Ladder 13. He told me it was because the new ladder would not fit in Station 9. The truth is that Chief Grigsby got all of the statistics together to prove the need for the Ladder truck at 13 instead of 9 and a medic truck was put in place of the ladder at station 9.

Now, they will sell the combination as not taking a truck out of service, but actually swapping an engine with a ladder. Everyone knows that the area covered by 5 and 9 is the busiest in the city for fires.

What sense does this make. If the news media was doing their job, they would pick up on this and run with it. Why the smoke and mirrors. This whole consolidation plan has been a huge magic trick. We are the pawns, the citizens are the pawns, and City Council has bought it all hook-line-and sinker.

There have been a lot of great comments recently. I applaud your insight. I cannot think of every angle and do not claim to.

It is amazing that our Fire Chief was worried for his job by not going against the budget proposal...supposedly. This same retaliation is what we have lived with for so long. I guess the same medicine is served to all under the current regime.



Anonymous said...

And also remember.... Only you can prevent Forest Fires.

Anonymous said...

These Ignorant people around the city just dont get it. Mrs Red needs to be S--- Canned and bought a ticket to the neverworld..Hell noone listens to me anyway..right..

Anonymous said...

90% of statistics can be made to say whatever you want... 50% of the time.

Anonymous said...

It sucks loosing Engine 13, but at least the plan is to move the ladder to 9 and the engine to 13 vs loosing another engine company. I dont support this crap but anything is beeter than loosing another company just to gain a medic truck while our guys rott away at clearbrook. hoback, tartaglia, grigsbo, and big red have done nothin but fuck us over and over again

Anonymous said...

Hmmmmmm. It appears that the frustration level is so high right now that the firefighters don't even want to talk about it anymore. Can't blame them. It appears obvious that the chiefs and the city are not listening to them, so what would be the point?

Might I suggest that the firefighters and city employees hire a private investigation group to look into possible criminal conduct by the city managers and the fire department chiefs? They cannot possibly be doing what they are without breaking federal, state, or local labor laws, and retaliation violates federal "whistleblower" statutes.

Past experiences have shown me that managers that do not listen to their employees, and hold onto their positions through fear and retaliation, are usually criminals. They use their tactics to hide their illegal activities, such as payoffs, and kickbacks. Findings of criminal behavior will probably result from a complete, independent, investigation.

Museice said...

Great... If you don't agree with someone you call them a 'Criminal'. ("they can't possibly be doing what they are without breaking... laws")

Is it possible Fire/EMS Management is correct?

The Self Dispatchers said...

It don't pay to commit crime.
Except for when you rhyme.
By the way - we are listening to sublime.
On the Cities Dime!
Cause all we gots is time.
To listen to all you people whine.
It sounds assinine.
But we are all dressed to the nines.
Some people stand in a window and look like a mime.
When the wind blows through SW all you hear are wind chimes.
And in SE all you smell is grime.
If #2 was on Nickelodeon, he would get the slime.
There are so many people around here that smell like swine.
If you post your name you will get a fine.
So... gotta go its dookie time.

Anonymous said...

You mean like the fire department paying for a golf trip at tax payers expense last year? Is that against the law or just a misuse of taxpayers funds?

Anonymous said...

Hey museice

Who called anyone a criminal? You had better read that post again. If I may quote that poster, they say,
"to look into POSSIBLE criminal conduct"
"Past experiences have shown me that managers that do not listen to their employees, and hold onto their positions through fear and retaliation, are usually criminals."
Neither one of those statements call anyone a criminal. They simply point out a possible reason for the drastic, uncooperative attitude of the fire and city administrations.

miuseice, you need to learn to read, and to comprehend what you read. Trying to put words into other people's mouths is bad..... it is very, VERY bad....

Remember, Reading is FUNdamental.

Anonymous said...

I said it before & I'll say it again.
all of us are smarter than one of us.

the truth is, they're replacing 2 engines with 1. Putting an engine in 13's territory is good.

Leaving only 1 engine in the 5/9 territory is ridiculous. Combining 5 & 9 into 1 station is the DUMBEST thing they have done. period, it exceeds everything else.

statistically it may not be, however, show us what you want to do. show us the proposal. then do what you want, that's what you have always done.

ala, Hoback saying I'll never support a 75' ladder here in the city then going & buying one.

buying E4 & E10 with ladders on top that we cant use for anything other than surround & drowned.

-cutting the number of firemen which forces defensive attacks

-cutting the number of fire stations to force defensive attacks

-cutting the number of engines which forces defensive attacks


I personally think they want more of a defensive fire dept. here's the governments plan---

-A defensive FD will cause old city houses that are run down to burn to the ground, thus eliminating the eyesore

-those lots then recieve new houses that don't burn as readily

-tax base goes up

-slums & low income people go down

see this pattern happening already???

in some ways it's not bad, but in regards to the employees that are caught in the meantime, it's bad.....

Anonymous said...

What's up with ryhme time???

Anonymous said...

Hmmm... How about a review
Currently (since Grigsby)
Engine 12 - Gone................-1
Engine 1 - Moved to 14...........0
Ladder 1, Engine 3 to station 1..0
Ladder 9 moved to 13.............0
Engine 7- Gone..................-1
Engine 13- Gone.................-1

Total of 3 Engine companies lost
5&9 merger - lose 1 engine......-1
for a total of 4 engine companies lost

Engine 2, watch your backs! Engine 10 is moving closer, the county is putting in a station (on top of engine 10)that can reach your run area, and you have been out of service a lot....

Anonymous said...

Gross negligence is criminal. Any one that does something for self gain, knowing it, could in danger people is criminal.....


jrod said...

Why does this museice guy always take the city's side? Are you on big red's payroll? Don't you think if the fire/ems management was right the 265(formerly 271) firefighters would agree with them? Instead we are all speaking out AGAINST management. The employees who do the job everyday know what is needed to do the job. LISTEN TO THEM! The problem with America is now everyone thinks if you have a degree and a management position, you know everything.I am here to tell you that is not the case. Listen to the firefighters, their voice and morale will tell you everything you need to know about the current state of affairs in this department.It WILL get worse before it gets better. The heart has been cut out of this group of execellent firefighters and we are tired of being kicked around.Alot of people are looking at other options and it will be a great loss if some of them leave. It is time to start letting our opinions be known loud and often. I am signing my name bcause I don't give a fuck anymore. I encourage you to join me. They have broken my heart, but they will never break my spirit.

Jeremy Bennington

Anonymous said...

no more teaching classes
no more driving personal vehical
no more tech rescue
no more car seat
no more overtime working
no more above and beyond
no more comittees
no more coming on in when sick
no more sucking ass
no more steping on you brother for promotion
no more talking bad about others command decisions.
no more making your self sick at night thinking about this place
no more taking this home with you
no more paded gloves bareknukles
no more beating around the bush
no more taking it lying down
no more broken hearts
no more maybe someone in there
no more chiefchiefchiefchief
NO MORE anything else

Anonymous said...

As a city firefighter, I would like to address the latest assault on city employees by the city.

The city is going to make us pay more for our health insurance. They put an article about it in the city corner newsletter and sent letters out to retirees. Why didn’t they send the letter to all employees?
The increase will begin January 2010. This encourages those close to retirement to leave before then or pay more out of pocket. Will the increases continue throughout our pensions?
I heard they didn’t include the retirement board in the process. More of big reds bully tactics I suppose.
Why are they doing it? There are several thoughts here.

They seem to be following selected parts of a suggestion by the Governmental Accounting Standards Board, an independent organization (private agency) that accountants and auditors follow.
In my opinion, their observations are based from the perspective of providing financial accuracy and accountability for businesses. They are not working to provide for employees or look after our interests.
It suggests employers set aside funds in a trust fund for retiree’s benefits.
Wonder how much interest they’ll make on that money?

How will it affect Roanoke city employees?
It will increase costs for health care and reduce benefits. Yes, for current employees and for retirees.
There are no guarantees in your benefits. Hang on; it’s going to be a bumpy ride.

Why is the city doing it? The emotional response is that it is to run off older employees.
There’s a lot to think about here. The loss of experience is not an issue with this administration.
They don’t realize how critical experience is in the fire service.
But one thing that really gets under my skin about it is this;
After spending 25 to 30 years of dedicated service to the city, you’re not appreciated or respected.
In fact firefighters are treated so bad that many have left, many of the young are looking to leave and many of the older men are counting the days. That’s a sour way to end a career.

In fact when ask about why they were changing the costs of our insurance, one person in Finance said we already have a better retirement package than the other departments; like we shouldn’t complain.
She doesn’t realize that they keep chipping away at our benefits more and more every year.
The pitiful raises, the utter failure of the pay for performance review, the corrupt promotional system and the way we are mistreated doesn’t help morale. It seems to never end.
Furthermore, she doesn’t appreciate that emergency services SHOULD have better benefits for the risks within our jobs. The worse risk she takes every day is a paper cut.
Fire, shootings, heart attacks, car wrecks, fights, stabbings, electrical or chemical hazards, flooding, disease or any other kind of tragedy, you call 911 and we’re there within minutes. Try that with your doctor, lawyer, plumber or electrician.
We accept risk of injury, death or exposure to medical nightmares and are not adequately compensated or even appreciated.
No, we’re treated with utter disrespect by this administration.

The citizens appreciate us. God bless them. But you folks downtown; I can overlook your arrogant self-absorbed ignorance until you reduce our manpower, reduce our apparatus, increase our risks and then are coy about our inadequate salaries and ever shrinking benefits.
“Well we are building you new stations. “
Administration built the new #1 so they would have new offices for themselves. They are building the others to continue downsizing. We didn’t ask for the buildings. I’d rather have a raise and better equipment. Buildings don’t fight fire.
Things continue in an ever downward spiral. I move further and further away every day.

Anonymous said...

dido dido dido

Anonymous said...

ditto ditto ditto

Anonymous said...

Amen to that. Ditto